A World History of Political Thought
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A World History of Political Thought

J. Babb

A World History of Political Thought is an outstanding and innovative work with profound significance for the study of the history of political thought, providing a wide-ranging, detailed and global overview of political thought from 600 BC to the 21st century. Treating both western and non-western systems of political thought as equal and placing them as they should be; side by side.
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Chapter 15: Anti-colonialism and neo-liberalism (1920–1980)

J. Babb


This period saw the stark choice between violence, particularly of the revolutionary left (Mao, Fanon, Che Guevara), and non-violence, usually of religiously inspired figures (Gandhi, Martin Luther King). Violence was the more prevalent approach but the long-term cost was high. What is most remarkable about this time in world history is how almost universal faith in socialism and the benefits of pan-regionalism, such as pan-Arabism and pan-Africanism, faded to the point the thought of the period looks naïve. In contrast, Western neo-liberalism, both the free market rhetoric of Hayek and the soft liberalism of Rawls, seemed to have emerged victorious in the battle of ideas against their rivals of the time, though doubts about the validity of neo-liberalism remained, particularly outside the West.

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