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Historical dynamics : why states rise and fall

Author: Peter Turchin
Publisher: Princeton, New Jersey : Princeton University Press, [2018]
Series: Princeton studies in complexity.
Edition/Format:   eBook : Document : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
Many historical processes are dynamic. Populations grow and decline. Empires expand and collapse. Religions spread and wither. Natural scientists have made great strides in understanding dynamical processes in the physical and biological worlds using a synthetic approach that combines mathematical modeling with statistical analyses. Taking up the problem of territorial dynamics--why some polities at certain times  Read more...
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Genre/Form: Electronic books
Additional Physical Format: Print version:
Turchin, Peter, 1957-
Historical dynamics : why states rise and fall.
Princeton : Princeton University Press, 2003
xii, 245 pages
(DLC) 2003110656
Material Type: Document, Internet resource
Document Type: Internet Resource, Computer File
All Authors / Contributors: Peter Turchin
ISBN: 9781400889310 1400889316
OCLC Number: 1030823045
Description: 1 online resource (260 pages).
Contents: Frontmatter --
Contents --
List of Figures --
List of Tables --
Preface --
Chapter One. Statement of the Problem --
Chapter Two. Geopolitics --
Chapter Three. Collective Solidarity --
Chapter Four. The Metaethnic Frontier Theory --
Chapter Five. An Empirical Test of the Metaethnic Frontier Theory --
Chapter Six. Ethnokinetics --
Chapter Seven. The Demographic-Structural Theory --
Chapter Eight. Secular Cycles in Population Numbers --
Chapter Nine. Case Studies --
Chapter Ten. Conclusion --
Appendix A. Mathematical Appendix --
Appendix B. Data Summaries for the Test of the Metaethnic Frontier Theory --
Bibliography --
Index.
Series Title: Princeton studies in complexity.
Responsibility: Peter Turchin.
More information:

Abstract:

Many historical processes are dynamic. Populations grow and decline. Empires expand and collapse. Religions spread and wither. Natural scientists have made great strides in understanding dynamical processes in the physical and biological worlds using a synthetic approach that combines mathematical modeling with statistical analyses. Taking up the problem of territorial dynamics--why some polities at certain times expand and at other times contract--this book shows that a similar research program can advance our understanding of dynamical processes in history. Peter Turchin develops hypotheses from a wide range of social, political, economic, and demographic factors: geopolitics, factors affecting collective solidarity, dynamics of ethnic assimilation/religious conversion, and the interaction between population dynamics and sociopolitical stability. He then translates these into a spectrum of mathematical models, investigates the dynamics predicted by the models, and contrasts model predictions with empirical patterns. Turchin's highly instructive empirical tests demonstrate that certain models predict empirical patterns with a very high degree of accuracy. For instance, one model accounts for the recurrent waves of state breakdown in medieval and early modern Europe. And historical data confirm that ethno-nationalist solidarity produces an aggressively expansive state under certain conditions (such as in locations where imperial frontiers coincide with religious divides). The strength of Turchin's results suggests that the synthetic approach he advocates can significantly improve our understanding of historical dynamics.

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