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Trade Globalization since 1795: Waves of Integration in the World-System

Christopher Chase-Dunn, Yukio Kawano and Benjamin D. Brewer
American Sociological Review
Vol. 65, No. 1, Looking Forward, Looking Back: Continuity and Change at the Turn of the Millenium (Feb., 2000), pp. 77-95
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2657290
Page Count: 19
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Trade Globalization since 1795: Waves of Integration in the World-System
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Abstract

The term "globalization" as used by social scientists and in popular discourse has many meanings. We contend that it is important to distinguish between globalization as a contemporary political ideology and what we call structural globalization-the increasing worldwide density of large-scale interaction networks relative to the density of smaller networks. We study one type of economic globalization over the past two centuries: the trajectory of international trade as a proportion of global production. Is trade globalization a recent phenomenon, a long-term upward trend, or a cyclical process? Using an improved measure of trade globalization, we find that there have been three waves since 1795. We discuss the possible causes of these pulsations of global integration and their implications for the early decades of the twenty-first century.

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