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Global cities and the transformation of the international system.

Curtis, Simon J (2009) Global cities and the transformation of the international system. PhD thesis, London School of Economics and Political Science.

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In recent decades a discourse has emerged around the concept of the 'global city'. This discourse has sought to understand the nature of a set of physical changes to the form of many cities around the world, linking these changes to processes of globalisation. Despite its inspiration for important work in other fields. International Relations has been slow to recognise the implications of the rise of the global city. This thesis argues that the emergence of the global city phenomenon is an important indication of broader transformative tendencies in the contemporary international system. It also argues that International Relations as a discipline offers a unique set of theoretical resources that can help analysts draw out the wider impact of the global city on international politics. In particular, the core concept of the 'international system', when formulated in a historically sensitive fashion, offers insight into the rise and fall of many different institutional forms and structures across time. The modern state system, when viewed from the perspective of la longue duree, may be viewed as a unique historical moment. For much of history, different polities have existed together: empires, city-states, leagues of cities, nomadic peoples. This thesis examines the proposition that the rise of the global city reveals another historic shift in the nature of the international system, and indicates the theoretical resources that may allow us to comprehend such a change. The important relationship between cities and states, it is argued, is now undergoing a historic shift, just as it has at many other points in the past. Understanding the nature of this change illuminates a host of important issues, including transformation in the nature of the state itself, and the renegotiation of the relationship between polities, territorial scale and the global economy in the contemporary world.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Political Science, International Relations
Sets: Collections > ProQuest Etheses
Departments > International Relations

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