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This book was written during a year's stay at the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences. Countless authors have sung its praises. Aside from splendid surroundings, unlimited library and secretarial assistance, and a ready supply of varied scholars to consult at a moment's notice, what the center offers is to leave the scholar to his own devices, for good or ill. Would that all men had such wisdom. The final version was consummated with the aid of a grant from the Social Sciences Grants Subcommittee of the Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research of McGill University.
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"I can say without hesitation that this is the finest book of analytic history that I have read in the past ten years. That Europe had formed a world-economy around herself historians knew. But only in general. What they had never thought about with the keenness and intelligence of I. Wallerstein's thought is that this entity provides a new framework for the subject of European history, that it is compelling, a new explanation, a new classification, indeed a revolutionary one, of received knowledge and current thought."
—Fernand Braudel, author of The Mediterranean and the Mediterranean World in the Age of Philip II
“It isn't just history or economics or sociology or political science. It is all of these in combination and thus places all of these fields on a new plane of understanding, It is a book that people will have to deal with, argue with, cite, learn by in order to make their own points....In sum, this is a most impressive work. I can hardly wait for the other volumes."
—Eric R. Wolf, author of Europe and the People without History
"A heroic and impressive achievement...an exhilarating and satisfying book....it explains more convincingly and sympathetically than anything I have read hitherto the actual process of economic and social development on a European-world scale."
—Joan Thirsk, American Journal of Sociology
"A tour de force that brings together and makes sense of a wealth of diverse historical studies which often seem to contradict each other...an extremely formidable achievement."
—Gertrud Lenzer, N.Y. Times Book Review
"A remarkable book. The author has a theory and uses it to explain the structure and course of public events in Europe and its trans-oceanic annexes in the sixteenth century. The effect is dazzling and dizzying."
—William McNeill, Societas
Immanuel Wallerstein is Senior Research Scholar at Yale University and the former President of the International Sociological Association. He is the author of many books, including, most recently, World-Systems Analysis: An Introduction and European Universalism: The Rhetoric of Power.
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