AMERICA: QUESTIONS OF POWER
Laurie Taylor meets three social scientists who have each produced a book exploring the nature and extent of the power of the United States. Three very different books: Incoherent Empire by Michael Mann, the forth-coming After the Empire by Emmanuel Todd and Empire Lite by Michael Ignatieff.
Michael Ignatieff believes that American leadership is the key to world order and the continuation of the human rights project.
Michael Mann has spent much of his life exploring the sources of social power and he believes the US has become a one-eyed giant, its current over-emphasis on military might distorting both its place in the world and its future prosperity at home.
Neither question the reality of US military power but a generation ago the historian and demographer Emmanuel Todd predicted the collapse of the Soviet Union he now proposes a similar fate for an America using micro-militarism as a smoke screen for real structural weaknesses.
Carr Professor of Human Rights Practice, Director of the Carr Center of Human Rights Policing at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.
Carr Center for Human Rights Policy http://www.ksg.harvard.edu/cchrp/index.shtml
Empire Lite: Nation Building in Bosnia, Kosovo, Afghanistan
Minerva ISBN 0099455439
Professor of Sociology at UCL, Los Angeles
Verso Books ISBN 1859845827
Researcher at the French National Institute for demographic studies
Institut National D’études Démographiques (INED) http://www.ined.fr/englishversion/index.html
After the Empire: the Breakdown of American Order
Columbia University Press
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