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New Left Review I/224, July-August 1997


Robert Pollin

Response to Giovanni Arrighi

The Long Twentieth Century is a volume of great historical sweep and originality. I don’t think my review could have been clearer in recognizing the many strengths of Giovanni Arrighi’s work. However, I did also find that much of the book’s core theoretical framework was in disarray. This need not be a critical problem in a work whose primary contribution is historical synthesis, but it is a major problem in my view in The Long Twentieth Century, since at least part of Arrighi’s stated ambition was to bring much greater analytic cohesion to Braudel’s similarly original but even more sprawling works.

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