Debating a Post-American World: What Lies Ahead?, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Debating a Post-American World

What Lies Ahead?, 1st Edition

Edited by Sean Clark, Sabrina Hoque


316 pages | 6 B/W Illus.

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The United States is currently the linchpin of global trade, technology, and finance, and a military colossus, extending across the world with a network of bases and alliances. This book anticipates the possible issues raised by a transition between American dominance and the rise of alternative powers.

While a ‘post-American’ world need not be any different than that of today, the risk associated with such a change provides ample reason for attentive study. Divided into four parts, 50 international relations scholars explore and discuss:

    • Power Transitions: addressing issues including the rise of China; the passing of American primacy and the endurance of American leadership.
    • War and Peace: addressing nuclear weapons; the risk of war; security privatization and global insecurity
    • Global Governance: addressing competition, trade, the UN, sovereignty, humanitarian intervention, law and power.
    • Energy and the Environment: addressing resource conflict, petrol, climate change and technology.

This unique project offers a compilation of disparate arguments by scholars and policy practitioners, encompassing a plurality of disciplines and theoretical perspectives. By providing clarity and focus to this essential debate on the future of the world in the next several decades, Debating a Post-American World will be of interest to students and scholars of International Relations and global politics, American politics, US Foreign policy and International Security.


"Lieberman challenges traditional deterrence theory, arguing that the concepts developed to explain Cold War rivalries are not suitable for non-nuclear (conventional) deterrence. He uses as case studies the Egyptian-Israeli rivalry up to 1973 and the tension between Israel and Hezbollah." - Survival

Table of Contents

Foreword Madame Louise Frechétte 1. Introduction: Into the 21st Century 2. The Rise of the Rest Fareed Zakaria 3. Optimism and Pessimism in an Era of Changing Power Sean M. Lynn-Jones 4. Global Transitions Jacek Kugler, Ronald L. Tammen and John Thomas Part 1: Power Transitions: America in World Politics 5. The Real Post-American World Christopher Layne 6. Grace, Murder, or Suicide? The Passing of American Primacy Terry Terriff 7. A Flawed Lens for Viewing U.S. Foreign Policy Steven Holloway 8. Analyzing Relative Decline in Zakaria’s Post-American World William R. Thompson 9. Déjà Vu All Over Again? Kim Richard Nossal 10. Constancy and Change in the Future International System James Fergusson 11.A Post-American World? Perils, Possibilities, and Preparations Mark R. Brawley 12. The American World, Mark III William C. Wohlforth 13. The Misleading Metaphor of Hegemonic Decline Joseph Nye 14. Postscript: Whither the American Colossus? 15. Three Questions on China's Rise: What is causing it? Will it continue? What are the consequences? Paul Bowles 16. Scenarios for China’s Role in a Post-American World Charles Burton 17. A Hard Act to Follow: Thoughts on World Leadership in America’s Shadow Alexander Moens 18. What Do Americans and Chinese Think of Themselves and Each Other? David R. Mandel 19. The ‘Rest’ and the Global South: Varieties of Actors, Issues, and Coalitions Timothy M. Shaw 20. America and the Emerging Powers in Tomorrow's Middle East Paul Salem 21. Two Hubs, Many Spokes, No Frame: The Shape of the Post-American Americas Jean Daudelin 22. Attraction and Repulsion: Brazil and the American World Paulo Roberto de Almeida 23. Pondering Canadian Defence in a ‘Post-American’ World Philippe Lagassé 24. Canada in the Post-American World John English 25. Postscript: Balances Disturbed Part 2: A Golden Age: The Passing of American Primacy 26. Paths to War and Peace in a Post-American World Brandon Valeriano and John Vasquez 27. Our Nuclear (Free?) Future David Mutimer 28. Nuclear Weapons: Stability of Terror Kyungkook Kang and Jacek Kugler 29. An Increasingly Fragile World David Carment and Yiagadeesen Samy 30. New Wars, the Age of Risk, and the Future of International Relations Andrew Latham 31. Security Privatization in a Post-American World Christopher Spearin 32. The Global Insecurity Future Wesley Wark 33. Zakaria’s Past Meets Zakaria’s Future Robert Bothwell 34. Postscript: Security in the Post-Cold War Era Part 3: Global Governance 35. What Lies Ahead for the OECD? Richard Woodward 36. Competing Rules of the Game in a Post-American World Richard Stubbs 37. Global Governance from America, Canada, and the Responsible Rest Aarie Glas and John Kirton 38. Lies Ahead for the Emerging Countries? Denise Gregory 39. On Free Trade, and the Post-American World C.L. Lim 40. The United Nations and Europe in a Post-American World Thomas Fues 41. 2025: A New World Order? Jeremy Kinsman 42. Addressing ‘So What?’ Sovereignty and Humanitarian Intervention in a ‘Post-American World.’ Alistair Edgar 43. Law, Power, and the International System Steven Haines 44. Postscript: Ordering Anarchy 45. Postscript: Ordering Anarchy. Part 4: Energy and the Environment 46. Still Living in a Material World? The ‘Rise of the Rest’ and the Question of Resource Conflict David G. Haglund 47. Democracy's Petro State Satya Brata Das 48. In the Face of an Unknown Future Matthew Paterson and Simon Dalby 49. American Prosperity and the High Politics of Climate Change Radoslav S. Dimitrov 50. Words From the Forgotten: The Environment in The Post-American World Heather A. Smith 51. Technology and the Future: Lessons from the Green Revolution Howard D. Leathers 52. Postscript: Our Fragile Home. 53. Concluding Reflections Denis Stairs

About the Editors

Sean Clark and Sabrina Hoque are PhD candidates in International Relations and Doctoral Fellows at the Centre for Foreign Policy Studies at Dalhousie University.

About the Series

Security and Governance

International Editorial Board

Mohammed Ayoob, Michigan State University, Richard Caplan, University of Oxford
Neta Crawford, Boston University, Stuart Croft, University of Warwick, Donatella della Porta, European University Institute, Michael Doyle, Columbia University, Lynn Eden, Stanford University, Takashi Inoguchi, Chuo University and University of Tokyo, Elizabeth Kier, University of Washington, Keith Krause, Graduate Institute of International Studies, Geneva, Bruce Russett, Yale University, Timothy Sisk, University of Denver, Janice Gross Stein, University of Toronto, Stephen Stedman, Stanford University and Mark Zacher, University of British Columbia

This series publishes high quality original research that reflects broadening conceptions of security and the growing nexus between the study of governance issues and security issues. Scholarship published in the series will meet the highest academic standards, and will be both theoretically innovative and policy-relevant. Work appearing in the series will be at the cutting edge of debates taking place at the intersection of security studies and governance studies.

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