Sources of Social Power The Rise of Classes and Nation-States, 1760-1914

ISBN-10: 052131349X
ISBN-13: 9780521313490
Edition: 1986
Authors: Michael Mann
List price: $47.00
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Description: This is the first part of a three-volume work on the nature of power in human societies. In it, Michael Mann identifies the four principal 'sources' of power as being control over economic, ideological, military, and political resources. He examines  More...

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Book details

List price: $47.00
Copyright year: 1986
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Publication date: 4/30/1986
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 560
Size: 6.25" wide x 9.25" long x 1.00" tall
Weight: 1.628
Language: English

This is the first part of a three-volume work on the nature of power in human societies. In it, Michael Mann identifies the four principal 'sources' of power as being control over economic, ideological, military, and political resources. He examines the interrelations between these in a narrative history of power from Neolithic times, through ancient Near Eastern civilisations, the classical Mediterranean age, and medieval Europe, up to just before the Industrial Revolution in England. Rejecting the conventional monolithic concept of a 'society', Dr. Mann's model is instead one of a series of overlapping, intersecting power networks. He makes this model operational by focusing on the logistics of power - how the flow of information, manpower, and goods is controlled over social and geographical space-thereby clarifying many of the 'great debates' in sociological theory. The present volume offers explanations of the emergence of the state and social stratification; of city-states, militaristic empires, and the persistent interaction between them; of the world salvation religions; and of the peculiar dynamism of medieval and early modern Europe. It ends by generalising about the nature of overall social development, the varying forms of social cohesion, and the role of classes and class struggle in history. Volume II will continue the history of power up to the present, centering on the interrelations of nation-states and social classes. Volume III will present the theoretical conclusions of the whole work. This ambitious and provocative attempt to provide a new theoretical frame for the interpretation of the theory of societies will be challenging and stimulating reading for a wide range of social scientists, historians, and other readers concerned with understanding large-scale social and historical processes.

Preface
Societies as organized power networks
The end of general social evolution: how prehistoric peoples evaded power
The emergence of stratification, states, and multi-power-actor civilisation in Mesopotamia
A comparative analysis of the emergence of stratification, states, and multi-power-actor civilisations
The first empires of domination: the dialectics of compulsory cooperation
'Indo-Europeans' and iron: expanding, diversified power networks
Phoenicians and Greeks: decentralized multi-power-actor civilisations
Revitalized empires of domination: Assyria and Persia
The Roman territorial empire
Ideology transcendent: the Christian ecumene
A comparative excursus into the world religions: Confucianism, Islam, and (especially) Hindu caste
The European dynamic: I. The intensive phase, A. D. 800-1155
The European dynamics: II. The rise of coordinating states, 1155-1477
The European dynamic: III. International capitalism and organic national states, 1477-1760
European conclusions: explaining European dynamism - capitalism, Christendom, and states
Patterns of world-historical development in agrarian societies
Index

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