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The Rise and Fall of the Great Powers:

Economic Change and Military Conflict from 1500-2000

by: Paul Kennedy

1st The Rise of The Western World.

In the yr-1500, the date chosen by numerous scholars to mark the divide between modern and pre-modern times, it was by no means obvious to the inhabitants of Europe that their continent was poised to dominate much of the rest of the earth.

Europe’s relative weaknesses were more apparent than its strengths.

Ming China

Of all the civilization of pre-modern times none appeared more advanced, none felt more superior, than

that of China. Its considerable population, 100-130 million compared with Eurpe’s 50-55 million in the fifteenth century; its remarkable culture; its exceedingly fertile and irrigated plains linked by a splendid canal system since the eleventh century; and it unified, hierachic administration run by a well educated Confucian bureacracy had given coherence & sophistication to Chinese Society which was the envy of foreign visitors.

The magnetic compass, printing by movable type, gunpowder and cannons were chinese inventions given evidence of cultural and technological advances.

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