This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse this site you are agreeing to our use of cookies. For more information, see our privacy statement

New Left Review 40, July-August 2006

Will strategic failure in Iraq hasten a decline in US hegemony? Immanuel Wallerstein surveys the global landscape that might emerge from the longue durée of American rule, with rival regional powers competing for energy, water and markets in an unstructured world-political order.



Since the end of the Second World War, the geopolitics of the world-system has traversed three different phases. From 1945 until around 1970 the us exercised unquestioned hegemony in the world-system. This began to decline during the period between 1970 and 2001, but the extent of the decline was limited by the strategy that the us evolved to delay and minimize the effects of its loss of ascendancy. Since 2001 the us has sought to recuperate its standing by more unilateralist policies, which have, however, boomeranged—indeed actually accelerating the speed and depth of its decline.

Subscribe for just £40 and get free access to the archive
Please login on the left to read more or buy the article for £3


Immanuel Wallerstein, ‘The Curve of American Power’, NLR 40: £3

If you want to create a new NLR account please register here

’My institution subscribes to NLR, why can't I access this article?’