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The Globalization of International Society$
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Tim Dunne and Christian Reus-Smit

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780198793427

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: February 2017

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198793427.001.0001

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Economies and Economic Interaction across Eurasia in the Early Modern Period

Economies and Economic Interaction across Eurasia in the Early Modern Period

Chapter:
(p.82) 5 Economies and Economic Interaction across Eurasia in the Early Modern Period
Source:
The Globalization of International Society
Author(s):

Hendrik Spruyt

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198793427.003.0005

A prevailing view suggests that the European order was distinct. Due to Europe’s political decentralization, economic interaction occurred across borders, facilitated by an international society based on common interests and values. By contrast, hegemonic political systems prevailed elsewhere. Such universal imperial systems constituted self-contained polities that stifled economic development. Consequently, capitalism arose in Europe alone. Gradually, European expansion led to the incorporation of the non-European regions into a global capitalist system. This chapter contends that the prevailing view is incorrect. The universal empires were neither self-contained nor stagnant. Significant interactions occurred across the Eurasian sphere with transnational networks creating conduits of knowledge and cultural exchange. Shared norms and practices were not the sole prerogative of the European state system. Globalization did not commence with the European maritime breakout. Moreover, rather than unidirectional expansion and displacement, Europeans layered on to existing organizational practices.

Keywords:   regional systems, international society, tribute system, Eurasia, mercantilism

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