The Ephemeral Civilization is an astonishing intellectual feat in which Graeme Snooks develops an original and ground-breaking analysis of changing sociopolitical forms over the past 3,000 years. Snooks challenges the prevailing theories of social evolutionism with an innovative approach which also looks ahead to the twenty-first century. The Ephemeral Civilization builds on the model of dynamic strategy outlined in the author's highly acclaimed companion volume, The Dynamic Society . The Ephemeral Society is divided into three parts - theory, history and future. Part I: This provides a new strategic theory of human behaviour and institutional change that is based on extensive historical study rather than abstract ideas borrowed from the social or natural sciences. Unlike social evolutionism, this new theory provides an explanation for the complete reversals that are observed in sociopolitical change. Part II: This focuses on the three fundamental types of civilization identified in the Dynamic Society - conquest, commerce and technological.
The author argues that sociopolitical change is a direct response to the specific dynamic strategies employed by mankind in order to survive and prosper. Part III: This section looks to the future. The author outlines a number of probable future changes in sociopolitical systems based on his dynamic strategy model. He focuses on the coming clash between the world's 'mega-states' which will lead, he believes, to a new economic and ecological revolution. The Ephemeral Civilization is a highly original and controversial attempt to explain systematically not only the changing nature of human civilization over the past 3,000 years, but also to interpret a remarkably wide range of historical issues and events. It is a book that should be read by all those interested in the history of economic thought and the development of society.