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  • Theories of history

    Theories of history

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    • Civilizations

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    • Cultural globalization

    • This piglix contains articles or sub-piglix about Cultural globalization


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    • Marxism

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    • Marxist schools of thought

    • This piglix contains articles or sub-piglix about Marxist schools of thought


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    • Societal collapse

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    • Sociocultural evolution theory

    • This piglix contains articles or sub-piglix about Sociocultural evolution theory


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    • Theorists on Western civilization

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    • World systems theory

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    • Accelerating change

    • In futures studies and the history of technology, accelerating change is a perceived increase in the rate of technological change throughout history, which may suggest faster and more profound change in the future and may or may not be accompanied by equally profound social and cultural change. In 1938, Buckminste ... Read »


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    • Agricultural revolution

    • Agricultural revolution may refer to: ... Read »


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    • American exceptionalism

    • American exceptionalism is one of three related ideas. The first is that the history of the United States is inherently different from other nations. In this view, American exceptionalism stems from its emergence from the American Revolution, thereby becoming what political scientist Seymour Martin Lipset called "the f ... Read »


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    • Annales School

    • The Annales School (French pronunciation: ​[a'nal]) is a group of historians associated with a style of historiography developed by French historians in the 20th century to stress long-term social history. It is named after its scholarly journal Annales d'histoire économique et sociale, which remains the mai ... Read »


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    • Archaic globalization

    • Archaic globalization is a phase in the history of globalization, and conventionally refers to globalizing events and developments from the time of the earliest civilizations until roughly 1600 (the following period is known as early modern globalization). Archaic globalization describes the relationships between commu ... Read »


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    • The Automated Society

    • In a diagram from the book The Automated Society, Bloomfield defines the history of humanity beginning over two million years ago and ending over a hundred thousand years in the future. The diagram is base on biological punctuated equilibrium and a parallel cultural evolution. The predictions of the future follow what ... Read »


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    • Base and superstructure

    • In Marxist theory, human society consists of two parts: the base (or substructure) and superstructure; the base comprises the forces and relations of production—employer–employee work conditions, the technical division of labour, and property relations—into which people enter to produce the necessities a ... Read »


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    • Big History

    • Big History is an emerging academic discipline which examines history from the Big Bang to the present. It examines long time frames using a multidisciplinary approach based on combining numerous disciplines from science and the humanities, and explores human existence in the context of this bigger picture. It integrat ... Read »


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    • Big History Project

    • The Big History Project was started by Bill Gates and David Christian to enable the global teaching of Big History. Big History “is the attempt to understand, in a unified way, the history of Cosmos, Earth, Life and Humanity.” It is a course that covers history from the Big Bang through to the present in an i ... Read »


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    • Marc Bloch

    • Marc Bloch

      Marc Léopold Benjamin Bloch (/blɔːk/ French: [maʁk blɔk]; 6 July 1886 – 16 June 1944) was a French historian who cofounded the highly influential Annales School of French social history. Bloch was a quintessential modernist. An assimilated Alsatian Jew from an academic family in Paris, he was dee ... Read »


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    • Bonapartism

    • Bonapartism is the political ideology of Napoleon Bonaparte and his followers and successors. It was later used to refer to persons who hoped to restore the House of Bonaparte and its style of government. After Napoleon, the term was applied to the French politicians who seized power in the coup of 18 Brumaire, ruling ... Read »


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    • Fernand Braudel

    • Fernand Braudel

      Fernand Braudel (French: [bʁodɛl]; 24 August 1902 – 27 November 1985) was a French historian and a leader of the Annales School. His scholarship focused on three main projects: The Mediterranean (1923–49, then 1949–66), Civilization and Capitalism (1955–79), and the unfinished Identity of F ... Read »


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    • Budapest School (Lukács)


    • Cambridge School (intellectual history)

    • In intellectual history and the history of political thought, the Cambridge School is a loose historiographical movement traditionally associated with the University of Cambridge, where many of those associated with the School held or continue to hold academic positions, including Quentin Skinner, J. G. A. Pocock, Pete ... Read »


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    • Capitalist mode of production (Marxist theory)

    • In Karl Marx's critique of political economy and subsequent Marxian analyses, the capitalist mode of production refers to the systems of organizing production and distribution within capitalist societies. Private money-making in various forms (renting, banking, merchant trade, production for profit, etc.) preceded the ... Read »


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    • Capitalist peace

    • The capitalist peace, or capitalist peace theory, posits that according to a given criterion for economic development (capitalism), developed economies have not engaged in war with each other, and rarely enter into low-level disputes. These theories have been proposed as an explanation for the democratic peace theory b ... Read »


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    • Carneiro's circumscription theory


    • Civilization

    • A civilization, or civilisation (see spelling differences), is any complex society characterized by urban development, social stratification, symbolic communication forms (typically, writing systems), and a perceived separation from and domination over the natural environment by a cultural elite. Civilizations are inti ... Read »


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    • Classical Marxism

    • Classical Marxism refers to the economic, philosophical, and sociological theories expounded by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, as contrasted with later developments in Marxism, especially Leninism and Marxism–Leninism. Karl Heinrich Marx (May 5, 1818, Trier, Germany – March 14, 1883, London) was an imme ... Read »


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    • Cliodynamics

    • Cliodynamics /ˈkli.oʊdaɪˈnæmɪks/ is a transdisciplinary area of research integrating cultural evolution, economic history/cliometrics, macrosociology, the mathematical modeling of historical processes during the longue durée, and the construction and analysis of historical databases. Cliodynamics t ... Read »


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    • Cliometrics

    • Cliometrics (klīəˈmetriks), sometimes called new economic history, or econometric history, is the systematic application of economic theory, econometric techniques, and other formal or mathematical methods to the study of history (especially social and economic history). It is a quantitative (as opposed to qua ... Read »


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    • Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed

    • Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed

      Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed (titled Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Survive for the British edition) is a 2005 book by academic and popular science author Jared Diamond, in which Diamond reviews the causes of historical and pre-historical instances of societal collapse — particularl ... Read »


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    • Auguste Comte

    • Auguste Comte

      Isidore Marie Auguste François Xavier Comte (/ˈɪzədɔːr oʊˈɡuːst məˈriː frænˈsweɪ seɪvi.ər kɒəmˈteɪ/; 19 January 1798 – 5 September 1857) was a French philosopher who founded the discipline of sociology, coining the term, and the doctrine of positivi ... Read »


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    • Conceptual history

    • Conceptual history (also the history of concepts or, from German, Begriffsgeschichte) is a branch of historical and cultural studies that deals with the historical semantics of terms. It sees the etymology and the change in meaning of terms as forming a crucial basis for contemporary cultural, conceptual and linguistic ... Read »


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    • Conflict theories

    • Conflict theories are perspectives in sociology and social psychology that emphasize the social, political, or material inequality of a social group, that critique the broad socio-political system, or that otherwise detract from structural functionalism and ideological conservatism. Conflict theories draw attention to ... Read »


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    • Counterfactual history

    • Counterfactual history, also sometimes referred to as virtual history, is a form of historiography that attempts to answer "" questions known as counterfactuals. Black and MacRaild provide this definition: "It is, at the very root, the idea of conjecturing on what did not happen, or what might have happened, in order t ... Read »


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    • Creative destruction

    • Creative destruction (German: schöpferische Zerstörung), sometimes known as Schumpeter's gale, is a concept in economics which since the 1950s has become most readily identified with the Austrian American economist Joseph Schumpeter who derived it from the work of Karl Marx and popularized it as a theory of econo ... Read »


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    • Critical Path (book)

    • Critical Path

      Critical Path is a book written by US author and inventor R. Buckminster Fuller with the assistance of Kiyoshi Kuromiya. First published in 1981, it is alongside Operating Manual for Spaceship Earth one of Fuller's best-known works. Vast in its scope, it describes Fuller's own vision of the development of human civiliz ... Read »


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    • Cultural ecology

    • Cultural ecology is the study of human adaptations to social and physical environments. Human adaptation refers to both biological and cultural processes that enable a population to survive and reproduce within a given or changing environment. This may be carried out diachronically (examining entities that existed in d ... Read »


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    • Cultural evolutionism

    • Cultural evolutionism or cultural evolution attempts to describe and explain long-term change in human sociology, insofar as those ways are socially rather than biologically acquired. As the development of a culture, it may be viewed as a uni-linear or multi-linear phenomenon. Uni-linear describes the change in human b ... Read »


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    • Cultural globalization

    • Cultural globalization refers to the transmission of ideas, meanings and values around the world in such a way as to extend and intensify social relations. This process is marked by the common consumption of cultures that have been diffused by the Internet, popular culture media, and international travel. This has adde ... Read »


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    • Cultural history

    • Cultural history combines the approaches of anthropology and history to look at popular cultural traditions and cultural interpretations of historical experience. It examines the records and narrative descriptions of past matter, encompassing the continuum of events (occurring in succession and leading from the past to ... Read »


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    • Cultural materialism (anthropology)

    • Cultural materialism is an anthropological research orientation first introduced by Marvin Harris in his 1968 book The Rise of Anthropological Theory, as a theoretical paradigm and research strategy. It is said to be the most enduring achievement of that work. Harris subsequently developed a full elaboration and defens ... Read »


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    • Cybernetic Culture Research Unit

    • The Cybernetic Culture Research Unit (Ccru) was a student-run interdisciplinary research collective founded in 1995 out of the University of Warwick's philosophy department. The collective's research was closely tied to the work of philosophers Sadie Plant (around whom it was founded), Nick Land, and their colleag ... Read »


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    • Deglobalization

    • Deglobalization or Deglobalisation is the process of diminishing interdependence and integration between certain units around the world, typically nation-states. It is widely used to describe the periods of history when economic trade and investment between countries decline. It stands in contrast to globalization, in ... Read »


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    • Democratic Rationalization

    • Democratic Rationalization is term used by Andrew Feenberg in his article "Subversive Rationalization: Technology, Power and Democracy with technology." Feenberg argues against the idea of technological determinism citing flaws in its two fundamental theses. The first is the thesis of unilinear progress. This is the b ... Read »


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    • Despotism

    • Despotism is a form of government in which a single entity rules with absolute power. That entity may be an individual, as in an , or it may be a group, as in an oligarchy. The English dictionary defines despotism as "the rule of a despot; the exercise of absolute authority." The root despot comes from the Greek word ... Read »


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    • Dialectical materialism

    • Dialectical materialism (sometimes abbreviated diamat) is a philosophy of science and nature, based on the writings of Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, and developed largely in Russia and the Soviet Union. Inspired by dialectic and materialist philosophical traditions, it accepts evolution of the natural world and the e ... Read »


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    • Dunning School

    • The Dunning School refers to a group of historians who shared a historiographical school of thought regarding the Reconstruction period of American history (1865–1877). The Dunning School viewpoint favored conservative elements in the south (the Redeemers, plantation owners and former Confederates) and disparaged ... Read »


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    • Dynastic cycle

    • Dynastic cycle (traditional Chinese: 朝代循環; simplified Chinese: 朝代循环; pinyin: Cháodài Xúnhuán) is an important political theory in Chinese history. According to this theory, each dynasty rises to a political, cultural, and economic peak and then, because of moral corru ... Read »


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    • The Eastern Origins of Western Civilisation

    • The Eastern Origins of Western Civilisation

      The Eastern Origins of Western Civilisation, written by John M. Hobson in 2004, is a book that argues against the historical theory of the rise of the West after 1492 as a "virgin birth", but rather as a product of Western interactions with more technically and socially advanced Eastern civilization. The text reinterp ... Read »


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    • Economic determinism

    • Economic determinism is a theory that economic relationships (such as being an owner or capitalist, or being a worker or proletarian) are the foundation upon which all other social and political arrangements in society are based. The theory stresses that societies are divided into competing economic classes whose relat ... Read »


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    • Empire and Communications

    • Empire and Communications is a book published in 1950 by University of Toronto professor Harold Innis. It is based on six lectures Innis delivered at Oxford University in 1948. The series, known as the Beit Lectures, was dedicated to exploring British imperial history. Innis however, decided to undertake a sweeping his ... Read »


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    • The End of History and the Last Man

    • The End of History and the Last Man

      The End of History and the Last Man is a 1992 book by Francis Fukuyama, expanding on his 1989 essay "The End of History?", published in the international affairs journal The National Interest. In the book, Fukuyama argues that the advent of Western liberal democracy may signal the endpoint of humanity's sociocultural e ... Read »


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    • Friedrich Engels

    • Friedrich Engels

      Friedrich Engels (English /ˈɛŋɡəlz/ or /ˈɛŋəlz/;German: [ˈfʁiːdʁɪç ˈɛŋəls]; 28 November 1820 – 5 August 1895) was a German philosopher, social scientist, journalist, and businessman. He founded Marxist theory together with Karl Marx. In 1845, he published Th ... Read »


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    • Ethnohistory

    • Ethnohistory is the study of cultures and indigenous peoples' customs by examining historical records as well as other sources of information on their lives and history. It is also the study of the history of various ethnic groups that may or may not still exist. The term is most commonly used in writing about the hist ... Read »


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    • The European Miracle

    • The European Miracle: Environments, Economies and Geopolitics in the History of Europe and Asia is a book written by Eric Jones in 1981 to refer to the sudden rise of Europe during the late Middle Ages. Ahead of the Islamic and Chinese civilizations, Europe steadily rose since the Early Modern period to a complete domi ... Read »


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    • Fourierism

    • Fourierism is the systematic set of economic, political, and social beliefs first espoused by French intellectual Charles Fourier (1772–1837). Based upon a belief in the inevitability of communal associations of people who worked and lived together as part of the human future, Fourier's committed supporters referr ... Read »


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    • Frankfurt School

    • The Frankfurt School (German: Frankfurter Schule) is a school of social theory and philosophy associated in part with the Institute for Social Research at the Goethe University Frankfurt. Founded during the interwar period, the School consisted of dissidents who felt at home neither in the existent capitalist, fascist, ... Read »


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    • Functionalism versus intentionalism

    • Functionalism v. intentionalism is a historiographical debate about the origins of the Holocaust as well as most aspects of the Third Reich, such as foreign policy. The debate on the origins of the Holocaust centers on essentially two questions: The terms were coined in a 1981 essay by the British Marxist historian Ti ... Read »


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    • Gaza Thesis

    • The Gaza or Gazi Thesis (from Ottoman Turkish: غزا‎, Ä¡azā, "holy war," or simply "raid") is a historical paradigm first formulated by Paul Wittek which has been used to interpret the nature of the Ottoman Empire during the earliest period of its history, the fourteenth century. The thesis addresses ... Read »


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    • Ernest Gellner

    • Ernest Gellner

      Ernest André Gellner (9 December 1925 – 5 November 1995) was a British-Czech philosopher and social anthropologist described by The Daily Telegraph, when he died, as one of the world's most vigorous intellectuals, and by The Independent as a "one-man crusader for critical rationalism". His first book, Words an ... Read »


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    • Globalization

    • Globalization or globalisation (see spelling differences) is the process of international integration arising from the interchange of world views, products, ideas, and other aspects of culture. Advances in transportation (such as the steam locomotive, steamship, jet engine, and container ships) and in telecommunication ... Read »


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    • Globalization and disease

    • Globalization, the flow of information, goods, capital, and people across political and geographic boundaries, has helped spread some of the deadliest infectious diseases known to humans. The spread of diseases across wide geographic scales has increased through history. Early diseases that spread from Asia to Europe w ... Read »


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    • Great Divergence

    • "Great Divergence" is a term coined by Samuel Huntington (also known as the European miracle, a term coined by Eric Jones in 1981) referring to the process by which the Western world (i.e. Western Europe and the parts of the New World where its people became the dominant populations) overcame pre-modern growth constrai ... Read »


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    • Great Man theory

    • The Great Man theory is a 19th-century idea according to which history can be largely explained by the impact of "great men", or heroes; highly influential individuals who, due to either their personal charisma, intelligence, wisdom, or political skill used their power in a way that had a decisive historical impact. Th ... Read »


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    • Guns, Germs, and Steel

    • Guns, Germs, and Steel

      Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies (also titled Guns, Germs and Steel: A short history of everybody for the last 13,000 years) is a 1997 transdisciplinary non-fiction book by Jared Diamond, professor of geography and physiology at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). In 1998, Guns, Germs, ... Read »


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    • Hamiltonian spite

    • Within the field of social evolution, Hamiltonian spite is a term for behaviours occurring among conspecifics that have a cost for the actor and a negative impact upon the recipient. W. D. Hamilton published an influential paper on altruism in 1964 to explain why genetic kin tend to help each other. He argued that ... Read »


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    • Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel

    • Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel

      Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel (/ˈheɪɡəl/;German: [ˈɡeːɔɐ̯k ˈvɪlhɛlm ˈfʁiːdʁɪç ˈheːɡəl]; August 27, 1770 – November 14, 1831) was a German philosopher and an important figure of German idealism. He achieved wide renown in his day and, while pri ... Read »


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    • Hegelianism

    • Hegelianism is the philosophy of G. W. F. Hegel which can be summed up by the dictum that "the rational alone is real", which means that all reality is capable of being expressed in rational categories. His goal was to reduce reality to a more synthetic unity within the system of absolute idealism. Hegel's method ... Read »


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    • Heroic theory of invention and scientific development

    • The heroic theory of invention and scientific development is the hypothesis that the principal authors of inventions and scientific discoveries are unique heroic individuals – "great scientists" or "geniuses." A competing hypothesis ("multiple discovery") is that most inventions and scientific discoveries are ... Read »


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    • Historic recurrence

    • Historic recurrence is the repetition of similar events in history. The concept of historic recurrence has variously been applied to the overall history of the world (e.g., to the rises and falls of empires), to repetitive patterns in the history of a given polity, and to any two specific events which bear a striking s ... Read »


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    • Historical anthropology

    • Historical anthropology is a historiographical movement which applies methodologies and objectives from Social and Cultural Anthropology to the study of historical societies. Like most such movements, it is understood in different ways by different scholars, and to some may be synonymous with the history of mentalities ... Read »


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    • Historical determinism

    • Historical determinism is the stance that events are historically predetermined or currently constrained by various forces. Historical determinism can be understood in contrast to its negation, i.e. the rejection of historical determinism. Some political philosophies (e.g. Early and Stalinist Marxism) assert a histori ... Read »


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    • Historical materialism

    • Historical materialism is a methodological approach to the study of human societies and their development over time that was first articulated by Karl Marx (1818–1883) as the materialist conception of history. It is principally a theory of history according to which the material conditions of a society's way of pr ... Read »


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    • Historical realism

    • Historical realism requires the writer’s critical knowledge of the historicist who has a different interpretation of the historical events. Hegel’s dialectical theory affected many thinkers concerned with social issues. Both realist and modernist writers wanted to reflect the very changes in their societies i ... Read »


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    • Historicism

    • Historicism is a mode of thinking that assigns major significance to a specific context, such as historical period, geographical place, and local culture. As such it varies in emphasis from individualist theories of knowledge such as empiricism and rationalism, which neglect the role of traditions. Historicism therefor ... Read »


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    • Historiometry

    • Historiometry is the historical study of human progress or individual personal characteristics, using statistics to analyze references to geniuses, their statements, behavior and discoveries in relatively neutral texts. Historiometry combines techniques from cliometrics, which studies the history of economics and from ... Read »


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    • Historism

    • Historism is a philosophical and historiographical theory, founded in 19th-century Germany (as Historismus) and especially influential in 19th- and 20th-century Europe. It pronounces the historicity of humanity and its binding to tradition. Historist historiography rejects historical teleology and bases its explanatio ... Read »


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    • History of mentalities

    • The history of mentalities is a calque of the French term histoire des mentalités, which might also be translated as "history of attitudes", "mindsets" or "world-views". The term describes a particular manner of doing history associated with the "critical turn" (tournant critique) of the latter generation of the Ann ... Read »


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    • History of modernisation theory

    • This article delineates the history of modernisation theory. Modernisation refers to a model of a progressive transition from a 'pre-modern' or 'traditional' to a 'modern' society. The theory looks at the internal factors of a country while assuming that, with assistance, "traditional" countries can be brought to devel ... Read »


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    • The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire

    • The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire is a book of history written by the English historian Edward Gibbon, which traces the trajectory of Western civilization (as well as the Islamic and Mongolian conquests) from the height of the Roman Empire to the fall of Byzantium. It was published in six volumes. ... Read »


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    • History wars

    • The history wars in Australia are an ongoing public debate over the interpretation of the history of the British colonisation of Australia and development of contemporary Australian society (particularly with regard to the impact on Aboriginal Australians and Torres Strait Islanders). The Australian debate often conce ... Read »


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    • Hydraulic empire

    • A hydraulic empire (also known as a hydraulic despotism, or water monopoly empire) is a social or government structure which maintains power and control through exclusive control over access to water. It arises through the need for flood control and irrigation, which requires central coordination and a specialized bure ... Read »


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    • Ibn Khaldun

    • Ibn Khaldun

      Ibn Khaldun (/ˌɪbənxælˈduːn/; Arabic: أبو زيد عبد الرحمن بن محمد بن خلدون الحضرمي‎‎, AbÅ« Zayd ‘Abd ar-Raḥmān ibn Muḥammad ibn KhaldÅ«n al-ḤaḍramÄ«; 27 M ... Read »


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    • Idea of Progress

    • In intellectual history, the Idea of Progress is the idea that advances in technology, science, and social organization can produce an improvement in the human condition. That is, people can become better in terms of quality of life (social progress) through economic development (modernization), and the application of ... Read »


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    • Industrial Revolution

    • The Industrial Revolution was the transition to new manufacturing processes in the period from about 1760 to sometime between 1820 and 1840. This transition included going from hand production methods to machines, new chemical manufacturing and iron production processes, improved efficiency of water power, the increasi ... Read »


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    • Industrial society

    • In sociology, industrial society refers to a society driven by the use of technology to enable mass production, supporting a large population with a high capacity for division of labour. Such a structure developed in the west in the period of time following the Industrial Revolution, and replaced the agrarian societies ... Read »


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    • Industrious Revolution

    • The Industrious Revolution is the title given to a period of time, usually given as between 1600 and 1800 that led up to the Industrial Revolution. It is a term first coined by the Japanese demographic historian Akira Hayami (), and accepted by other historians to help further explain the advent of the Industrial Revol ... Read »


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    • Information revolution

    • The term information revolution describes current economic, social and technological trends beyond the Industrial Revolution. Many competing terms have been proposed that focus on different aspects of this societal development. The British polymath crystallographer J. D. Bernal introduced the term "scientific and tech ... Read »


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    • Information society

    • An information society is a society where the creation, distribution, use, integration and manipulation of information is a significant economic, political, and cultural activity. Its main drivers are digital information and communication technologies, which have resulted in an information explosion and are profoundly ... Read »


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    • Institute for Social Research

    • Institut für Sozialforschung

      The Institute for Social Research (German: Institut für Sozialforschung, IfS) is a research organization for sociology and continental philosophy, best known as the institutional home of the Frankfurt School and critical theory. The Institute was founded in Frankfurt am Main in 1923, where it was (and as of 2005[up ... Read »


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    • Instrumental conception of technology

    • Instrumental and intrinsic value are technical labels for the two poles of an ancient dichotomy. People seem to reason differently about what they ought to do--good ends--and what they are able to do--good means. When people reason about ends, they apply the criterion intrinsic value. When they reason about means they ... Read »


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    • Paul Kennedy

    • Paul Kennedy

      Paul Michael Kennedy CBE FBA was born on 17 June 1945 in Wallsend, near Newcastle upon Tyne, and is a British historian at Yale University specialising in the history of international relations, economic power and grand strategy. He has published prominent books on the history of British foreign policy and Great Power ... Read »


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    • Knowledge society

    • A knowledge society generates, shares and makes available to all members of the society knowledge that may be used to improve the human condition. A knowledge society differs from an information society in that the former serves to transform information into resources that allow society to take effective action while t ... Read »


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    • David Kolb

    • David Kolb (born 1939) is an American philosopher and the Charles A. Dana Professor Emeritus of Philosophy at Bates College in Maine. Kolb received a B.A. from Fordham University in 1963 and an M.A. in 1965. He later received a M.Phil. from Yale University in 1970 and a Ph. D. in 1972. Kolb's Dissertation was titled " ... Read »


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    • Nikolay Kradin

    • Nikolay Nikolaevich Kradin (Russian: Крадин Николай Николаевич; born in Onokhoy, Buryatia, Russian SFSR on April 17, 1962) is a Russian anthropologist and archaeologist. Since 1985 he has been a Research Fellow of the Institute of History, Archaeology ... Read »


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    • Law of Social Cycle

    • Law of Social Cycle, also known as social cycle theory, is a theory of human historical motivity based on "the ancient spiritual ideas of the Vedas". The theory was propounded by the Indian philosopher and spiritual leader Prabhat Ranjan Sarkar in the 1950s and expanded by Ravi Batra since the 1970s,Johan Galtung and S ... Read »


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    • Law of the handicap of a head start

    • The law of the handicap of a head start (original Dutch: ) or dialectics of lead is a theory that suggests that an initial head start in a given area may result in a handicap in the long term. The term was coined in 1937 by Jan Romein, a Dutch journalist and historian, in his essay "The dialectics of progress" ("De dia ... Read »


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    • Henri Lefebvre

    • Henri Lefebvre

      Henri Lefebvre (French: [ləfɛvʁ]; 16 June 1901 – 29 June 1991) was a French Marxist philosopher and sociologist, best known for pioneering the critique of everyday life, for introducing the concepts of the right to the city and the production of social space, and for his work on dialectics, alienati ... Read »


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    • Leninism

    • Leninism is the political theory for the democratic organisation of a revolutionary vanguard party and the achievement of a dictatorship of the proletariat, as political prelude to the establishment of socialism. Developed by and named for the Russian revolutionary Lenin, Leninism comprises socialist political and econ ... Read »


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    • Gerhard Lenski

    • Gerhard Emmanuel "Gerry" Lenski, Jr. (August 13, 1924 – December 7, 2015) was an American sociologist known for contributions to the sociology of religion, social inequality, and introducing the ecological-evolutionary theory. He spent much of his career as a professor at the University of North Carolina at Chapel ... Read »


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    • Longue durée


    • Madilog

    • The Madilog by Iljas Hussein (the pen name of Tan Malaka), first published in 1943, official first edition 1951, is the magnum opus of Tan Malaka, the Indonesian national hero and is the most influential work in the history of modern Indonesian philosophy. Madilog is an Indonesian acronym that stands for Materialisme D ... Read »


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    • Makhnovism

    • Makhnovism refers to various related political and economic theories elaborated by Ukrainian anarchist revolutionary leader Nestor Makhno, and by other theorists (Peter Arshinov etc.) who claim to be carrying on Makhno's work. During Makhno's lifetime Makhnovism was anarchistic, and opposed the state and political part ... Read »


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    • Malthusian trap

    • The Malthusian trap is the putative lack of sustainability of improvements in a society's standard of living because of population growth. It is named for Thomas Robert Malthus, who suggested that while technological advances could increase a society's supply of resources, such as food, and thereby improve the standard ... Read »


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    • Mandate of Heaven

    • The Mandate of Heaven (天命) was a principle used to justify the power of the emperor of China, as well as explaining suitability for the office. According to this belief, heaven bestows its mandate to a just ruler, the Son of Heaven. The Mandate of Heaven depends on the virtue of the emperor; if he does not fu ... Read »


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    • Marx's theory of alienation


    • Marx's theory of history


    • Marxism

    • Marxism is a method of socioeconomic analysis that analyzes class relations and societal conflict using a materialist interpretation of historical development and a dialectical view of social transformation. It originates from the mid-to-late 19th century works of German philosophers Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels. Ma ... Read »


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    • Umberto Meoli

    • Umberto Meoli (August 26, 1920 – May 17, 2002) was an Italian historian of economics, known as a maverick of the Italian Left who eschewed Marxism in favour of British pragmatism. Meoli was born in Padua, one of nineteen brothers; his father was a pharmacist from a small town near Benevento, and his mother wa ... Read »


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    • Mode of production

    • In the writings of Karl Marx and the Marxist theory of historical materialism, a mode of production (in German: Produktionsweise, meaning 'the way of producing') is a specific combination of: Marx regarded productive ability and participation in social relations as two essential characteristics of human beings and tha ... Read »


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    • Multiple discovery

    • The concept of multiple discovery (also known as simultaneous invention) is the hypothesis that most scientific discoveries and inventions are made independently and more or less simultaneously by multiple scientists and inventors. The concept of multiple discovery opposes a traditional view—the "heroic theory" of ... Read »


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    • The Myth of the Machine

    • The Myth of the Machine is a two-volume book taking an in-depth look at the forces that have shaped modern technology since prehistoric times. The first volume, Technics and Human Development, was published in 1967, followed by the second volume, The Pentagon of Power, in 1970. The author, Lewis Mumford, shows the para ... Read »


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    • Neolithic Revolution

    • The Neolithic Revolution or Neolithic Demographic Transition, sometimes called the Agricultural Revolution, was the wide-scale transition of many human cultures from a lifestyle of hunting and gathering to one of agriculture and settlement, making possible an increasingly larger population. These settled communities pe ... Read »


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    • New Qing History

    • The New Qing History is a school of thought that gained prominence in the United States in the mid-1990s by offering a wide-ranging revision of history of the Manchu Qing dynasty. Earlier historians had emphasized the power of Han Chinese to “sinicize” their conquerors, that is, to assimilate and make them Ch ... Read »


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    • Nonzero: The Logic of Human Destiny

    • Nonzero: The Logic of Human Destiny

      Nonzero: The Logic of Human Destiny is a 1999 book by Robert Wright, in which he argues that biological evolution and cultural evolution are shaped and directed first and foremost by "non-zero-sumness" i.e., the prospect of creating new interactions that are not zero-sum. The principal argument of Nonzero is to de ... Read »


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    • Nouvelle histoire

    • The term new history from the French term nouvelle histoire, was coined by Jacques Le Goff and Pierre Nora, leaders of the third generation of the Annales School, in the 1970s. The movement can be associated with cultural history, history of representations and histoire des mentalités. The new history movement's in ... Read »


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    • The Origin of the Family, Private Property and the State

    • The Origin of the Family, Private Property and the State

      The Origin of the Family, Private Property, and the State: in the Light of the Researches of Lewis H. Morgan (German: Der Ursprung der Familie, des Privateigenthums und des Staats) is an 1884 historical materialist treatise by Friedrich Engels. It is partially based on notes by Karl Marx to Lewis H. Morgan's book Ancie ... Read »


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    • Orthodox Marxism

    • Orthodox Marxism is the body of Marxist thought that emerged following the death of Karl Marx which became the official philosophy of the socialist movement as represented in the Second International until the First World War. Orthodox Marxism aims to simplify, codify and systematize Marxist methodology and theory, iro ... Read »


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    • Ottoman Decline Thesis

    • The Ottoman Decline Thesis or Ottoman Decline Paradigm (Turkish: Osmanlı Gerileme Tezi) refers to a now-obsolete historical narrative which had once been used to explain the history of the Ottoman Empire. According to the Decline Thesis, following a golden age associated with the reign of Sultan Suleiman the Magnifi ... Read »


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    • Paradigm shift

    • A paradigm shift, as identified by American physicist and philosopher Thomas Kuhn (1922–1996), is a fundamental change in the basic concepts and experimental practices of a scientific discipline. Kuhn contrasted these shifts, which characterize a scientific revolution, to the activity of normal science, which he d ... Read »


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    • Parametric determinism

    • Parametric determinism refers to a Marxist interpretation of the course of history formulated by Ernest Mandel, and it could be viewed as one variant of Karl Marx's historical materialism or as a philosophy of history. In an article critical of the Analytical Marxism of Jon Elster, Mandel explains the idea as follows: ... Read »


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    • Path dependence

    • Path dependence explains how the set of decisions one faces for any given circumstance is limited by the decisions one has made in the past, even though past circumstances may no longer be relevant. In economics and the social sciences, path dependence can refer either to outcomes at a single moment in time, or to lon ... Read »


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    • Peterhouse school of history

    • The Peterhouse school of history was named after the Cambridge college of the same name where the history taught concentrated on 'high politics'. That is, the study of 'fifty or sixty politicians in conscious tension with one another', in the words of Maurice Cowling, the most prominent member of the Peterhouse school. ... Read »


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    • Planetary phase of civilization

    • The planetary phase of civilization is a concept defined by the Global Scenario Group (GSG), an environmental organization that specialized in scenario analysis and forecasting. Proponents state that increasing global interdependence and risks, such as climate change, are binding the world into a unitary socio-ecologic ... Read »


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    • Post-industrial society

    • In sociology, the post-industrial society is the stage of society's development when the service sector generates more wealth than the manufacturing sector of the economy. The term was originated by Alain Touraine and is closely related to similar sociological theoretical constructs such as post-fordism, information s ... Read »


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    • Primitive communism

    • Primitive communism is a concept originating from Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels who argued that hunter-gatherer societies were traditionally based on egalitarian social relations and common ownership. A primary inspiration for both Marx and Engels were Lewis Henry Morgan's descriptions of 'communism in living' as prac ... Read »


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    • Progress (history)

    • In historiography, progress (from Latin progressus, "advance", "(a) step onwards") is the study of how specific societies improved over time in terms of science, technology, modernization, liberty, democracy, longevity, quality of life, freedom from pollution and so on. Specific indicators can range from economic data, ... Read »


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    • Progress trap

    • A progress trap is the condition human societies experience when, in pursuing progress through human ingenuity, they inadvertently introduce problems they do not have the resources or political will to solve, for fear of short-term losses in status, stability or quality of life. This prevents further progress and somet ... Read »


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    • The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism

    • The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism

      The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism (German: Die protestantische Ethik und der Geist des Kapitalismus) is a book written by Max Weber, a German sociologist, economist, and politician. Begun as a series of essays, the original German text was composed in 1904 and 1905, and was translated into English for t ... Read »


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    • Proto-globalization

    • Proto-globalization or early modern globalization is a period of the history of globalization roughly spanning the years between 1600 and 1800, following the period of archaic globalization. First introduced by historians A. G. Hopkins and Christopher Bayly, the term describes the phase of increasing trade links and cu ... Read »


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    • Psychohistory

    • Psychohistory is the study of the psychological motivations of historical events. It attempts to combine the insights of psychoanalysis with the research methodology of the social sciences to understand the emotional origin of the social and political behavior of groups and nations, past and present. Its subject matter ... Read »


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    • Qing conquest theory

    • The Qing conquest theory is a theory proposed by Chinese academics that attempts to explain the Great Divergence, the process by which the Occident overtook China as the major economic and industrial world power. Specifically, it seeks to explain how Europe could experience an industrial revolution, while China did not ... Read »


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    • Carroll Quigley

    • Carroll Quigley

      Carroll Quigley (/ˈkwɪɡli/; November 9, 1910 – January 3, 1977) was an American historian and theorist of the evolution of civilizations. He is noted for his teaching work as a professor at Georgetown University, for his academic publications, and for his research on the Round Table movement. Born ... Read »


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    • Revisionism (Marxism)

    • Within the Marxist movement, the word revisionism is used to refer to various ideas, principles and theories that are based on a significant revision of fundamental Marxist premises. The term is most often used by those Marxists who believe that such revisions are unwarranted and represent a "watering down" or abandonm ... Read »


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    • Rostow's stages of growth


    • Seeds of Change: Five Plants That Transformed Mankind

    • Seeds of Change

      Seeds of Change: Five Plants That Transformed Mankind is a 1985 book by Henry Hobhouse which explains how the history of the world since Columbus linked America to Europe and has been changed by five plants. It describes how mankind's discovery, usage and trade of sugar, tea, cotton, the potato, and quinine have influe ... Read »


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    • Self-referencing doomsday argument rebuttal

    • Self-referencing doomsday argument rebuttals attempt to refute the Doomsday argument (that there is a credible link between the brevity of the human race's existence and its expected extinction) by applying the same reasoning to the lifetime of the Doomsday argument (DA) itself. The first researchers to write about th ... Read »


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    • Seshat (project)

    • The Seshat: Global History Databank is a nonprofit organization and an international scientific research project. Founded in 2011, the Seshat: Global History Databank gathers data into a single, large database that can be used to test scientific hypotheses. The Databank consults directly with expert scholars to code wh ... Read »


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    • A Short History of Progress

    • A Short History of Progress

      A Short History of Progress is a non-fiction book and lecture series by Ronald Wright about societal collapse. The lectures were delivered as a series of five speeches, each taking place in different cities across Canada as part of the 2004 Massey Lectures which were broadcast on the CBC Radio program, Ideas. The book ... Read »


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    • Smihula waves

    • Smihula waves (or Smihula cycles, Smihula waves of technological revolutions, economic waves of technological revolutions) are long-term waves of technological progress which are reflected also in long-term economic waves. They are crucial notion of Daniel Smihula´s theory of technological progress. The Smihula ... Read »


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    • Social cycle theory

    • Social cycle theories are among the earliest social theories in sociology. Unlike the theory of social evolutionism, which views the evolution of society and human history as progressing in some new, unique direction(s), sociological cycle theory argues that events and stages of society and history are generally repeat ... Read »


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    • Social Darwinism

    • Social Darwinism is a name given to various phenomena emerging in the second half of the 19th century, trying to apply biological concepts of natural selection and survival of the fittest in human society. The term itself emerged in the 1880s. The term Social Darwinism gained widespread currency when used after 1944 by ... Read »


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    • Social savings

    • Social savings is a growth accounting technique to evaluate the historical implications of new technology on economic growth. Developed in the late 1950s by American economic historian and scientist Robert Fogel, the methodology works to estimate the cost-savings of the new technology compared with the next best altern ... Read »


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    • Societal collapse

    • Societal collapse is the fall or disintegration of complex human societies. Societal collapse broadly includes abrupt societal failures such as that of the Maya Civilization, as well as more extended gradual declines of cultures, institutions, or a civilization like the fall of the Western Roman Empire. The general sub ... Read »


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    • Sonderweg

    • Sonderweg (German: [ˈzɔndɐˌveːk], "special path") identifies the theory in German historiography that considers the German-speaking lands or the country Germany itself to have followed a course from to democracy unlike any other in Europe. The modern school of thought by that name arose early during Wo ... Read »


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    • Pitirim Sorokin

    • Pitirim Sorokin

      Pitirim Alexandrovich Sorokin (/səˈroʊkɪn, sɔː-/;Russian: Питири́м Алекса́ндрович Соро́кин, 4 February [O.S. 21 January] 1889, Turiya village, Vologda Governorate – 11 February 1968, Winchester, Massac ... Read »


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    • Staples thesis

    • In economic development, the staples thesis is a theory of export-led growth based on Canadian experience. The theory "has its origins in research into Canadian social, political, and economic history carried out in Canadian universities...by members of what were then known as departments of political economy". From th ... Read »


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    • Stranger King

    • The Stranger King theory offers a framework to understand global colonialism. It seeks to explain the apparent ease whereby many indigenous peoples subjugated themselves to an alien colonial power and places state formation by colonial powers within the continuum of earlier, similar but indigenous processes. It highli ... Read »


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    • Technological determinism

    • Technological determinism is a reductionist theory that presumes that a society's technology drives the development of its social structure and cultural values. The term is believed to have been coined by Thorstein Veblen (1857–1929), an American sociologist and economist. The most radical technological determinis ... Read »


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    • Technological revolution

    • Technological revolution is, in general, a relatively short period in history when one technology (or better a set of technologies) is replaced by another technology (or by the set of technologies). As Nick Bostrom wrote: “We might define a technological revolution as a dramatic change brought about relatively qui ... Read »


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    • Technology and society

    • Technology society and life or technology and culture refers to cyclical co-dependence, co-influence, and co-production of technology and society upon the other (technology upon culture, and vice versa). This synergistic relationship occurred from the dawn of humankind, with the invention of simple tools and continues ... Read »


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    • The Arab Awakening

    • The Arab Awakening is a 1938 book by George Antonius, published in London by Hamish Hamilton. It is viewed as the foundational textbook of the history of modern Arab nationalism. According to Martin Kramer, The Arab Awakening "became the preferred textbook for successive generations of British and American historians a ... Read »


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    • Theory of historical trajectory

    • The theory of historical trajectory is part of Karl Marx's historical materialism. This theory has been analyzed by Erik Olin Wright, whose work has been cited in relation to it. According to Wright, while Marx's theory of social change is often regarded as obsolete, it is nonetheless an important and likely still the ... Read »


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    • Thesis, antithesis, synthesis

    • The thesis, antithesis, synthesis (German: These, Antithese, Synthese; originally:Thesis, Antithesis, Synthesis) is often used to describe the thought of German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel never used the term himself. It originated with Johann Fichte. The relation between the three abstract terms ... Read »


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    • Third Period

    • The Third Period is an ideological concept adopted by the Communist International (Comintern) at its Sixth World Congress, held in Moscow in the summer of 1928. The Comintern's theory was based on its economic and political analysis of world capitalism, which posited the division of recent history into three periods. ... Read »


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    • Three Eras

    • The Three Eras is a Judeo-Christian scheme of periods in historiography, called also Vaticinium Eliae (prophecy of Elijah or Elias). A three-period division of time appears in the Babylonian Talmud: the period before the giving of the law (Torah); the period subject to the law; and the period of the Messiah. This schem ... Read »


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    • Arnold J. Toynbee

    • Arnold J. Toynbee

      Arnold Joseph Toynbee CH (/ˈtɔɪnbi/; 14 April 1889 – 22 October 1975) was a British historian, philosopher of history, research professor of International History at the London School of Economics and the University of London and author of numerous books. Toynbee in the 1918–1950 period was a leading ... Read »


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    • Traditional society

    • In sociology, traditional society refers to a society characterized by an orientation to the past, not the future, with a predominant role for custom and habit. Such societies are marked by a lack of distinction between family and business, with the division of labor influenced primarily by age, gender, and status. ... Read »


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    • Triadization

    • Triadization (or triadisation) is a proposed alternative to the theory of globalization. It states that political, economic and socio-cultural integration have been limited to three regions of the world: Japan and the newly industrialized countries of Southeast Asia, Western Europe and North America. Outside of these ... Read »


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    • United States Factor

    • The United States Factor is a view of modern history that promotes the United States as the contingent reason for the Allied Powers winning both World Wars and for preventing any powerful rival political regime from becoming mainstream in the 21st century world. Azar Gat, argues that this "United States Factor" is ... Read »


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    • Urban revolution

    • In anthropology and archaeology, the Urban Revolution is the process by which small, kin-based, nonliterate agricultural villages were transformed into large, socially complex, urban societies. The term "urban revolution" was introduced in the 1930s by V. Gordon Childe, an Australian archaeologist. Childe also coined t ... Read »


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    • Veritism

    • Veritism was a socio-philosophical ideology promoted by the "Veritism Foundation" (apparently now defunct). It advocates that man has been presented with no conclusive evidence lending credence to the existence of a specific deity, or supreme entity and thus has no justification for reaching any kind of conclusions on ... Read »


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    • Giambattista Vico

    • Giambattista Vico

      Giambattista Vico (B. Giovan Battista Vico, 23 June 1668 – 23 January 1744) was an Italian political philosopher and rhetorician, historian, and jurist, recognized as a great intellectual of the Age of Enlightenment. He criticized the expansion and development of modern rationalism and was an apologist for Clas ... Read »


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    • Immanuel Wallerstein

    • Immanuel Wallerstein

      Immanuel Maurice Wallerstein (/ˈwɔːlərstiːn/; born September 28, 1930) is an American sociologist, historical social scientist, and world-systems analyst, arguably best known for his development of the general approach in sociology which led to the emergence of his world-systems approach. He publishes bi ... Read »


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    • The Wealth and Poverty of Nations

    • The Wealth and Poverty of Nations: Why Some are So Rich and Some So Poor (), published in 1998 (with an epilogue added to the 1999 paperback edition), is a book by the late David Landes, formerly Emeritus Professor of Economics and former Coolidge Professor of History at Harvard University. In it, Landes elucidates the ... Read »


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    • Whig history

    • Whig history (or Whig historiography) is an approach to historiography that presents the past as an inevitable progression towards ever greater liberty and , culminating in modern forms of liberal democracy and constitutional monarchy. In general, Whig historians emphasize the rise of constitutional government, persona ... Read »


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    • White's law


    • Karl August Wittfogel

    • Karl August Wittfogel (6 September 1896, in Woltersdorf, Germany – 25 May 1988, in New York, United States) was a German-American playwright, historian, and sinologist. Originally a Marxist and an active member of the Communist Party of Germany, after the Second World War Wittfogel was an equally fierce anti-co ... Read »


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    • World-systems theory

    • World-systems theory (also known as world-systems analysis or the world-systems perspective), is a multidisciplinary, macro-scale approach to world history and social change which emphasizes the world-system (and not nation states) as the primary (but not exclusive) unit of social analysis. "World-system" refers to th ... Read »


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    • Yuga

    • Yuga in Hinduism is an epoch or era within a four age cycle. A complete Yuga starts with the Satya Yuga, via Treta Yuga and Dvapara Yuga into a Kali Yuga. Our present time is a Kali Yuga, which started at 3102 BCE with the end of the Mahabharata war. There are four Yugas in one cycle: According to the Laws of Man ... Read »


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  • What Else?

    • Theories of history

Extras