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Outside InThe Transnational Circuitry of US History$
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Andrew Preston and Doug Rossinow

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780190459840

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: December 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190459840.001.0001

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Globalization’s Paradox

Globalization’s Paradox

Economic Interdependence and Global Governance

(p.36) 2 Globalization’s Paradox
Outside In

Daniel Sargent

Oxford University Press

This chapter surveys US engagement with the responsibilities of international economic governance, responsibilities that the United States began to assume from the 1930s, after a false start in the 1920s. It explains the connections between US foreign policy in general and US foreign economic policy in particular. The Bretton Woods institutions of 1944 formalized a new era of rules-based global governance, in which the United States took a central role. This new era endured until the early 1970s, when it broke down as a result of relative decline in US capacities. No new system of rules-based governance emerged, a failure that the chapter attributes to the thickening interdependence of the United States with the world economy in a new era of globalization. Intensifying interdependence, the chapter argues, increases the domestic costs associated with the performance of hegemonic responsibilities and makes unlikelier the orchestration of hegemonic leadership. The mid-twentieth-century heyday of US responsibility coincided, conversely and somewhat paradoxically, with a phase of relative US disengagement from the larger global economy.

Keywords:   global governance, interdependence, globalization, US foreign policy, US foreign economic policy

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