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Crises, Crashes and Speculation-Hegemonic Cycles of Capitalist World-Economy and International Financial System

Hegemonic Cycles of Capitalist World-Economy and International Financial System Krishnendu Ray This article sketches historically the capitalist world-economy from the 17th century to the present as seen from the vantage point of international finance during periods of hegemonic transitions. The discussion here is at a level removed from the everyday practices of production and consumption and from much of what is called 'market economy . It focuses on the view from the successive cores of the capitalist world-economy such as Amsterdam in the 17th century. Great Britain in the 19th century and the United States in the 20th century. It gives attention to those events and processes that had systemic ramifications, largely ignoring those of regional or local significance. The attempt here is to describe the transitions at the apex of a world-economy consisting of several different regional hierarchies of finance both public and private, from Amsterdam to London, then, from London to a more global system led by New York and finally to a tripolar world led by Tokyo.

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