The Great Leveler : Violence and the History of Inequality from the Stone Age to the Twenty-First Century / Walter Scheidel.
- Princeton, NJ : Princeton University Press, 
- The Princeton Economic History of the Western World ; 69
1 online resource
- In English.
- System Details:
- Mode of access: Internet via World Wide Web.
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- Are mass violence and catastrophes the only forces that can seriously decrease economic inequality? To judge by thousands of years of history, the answer is yes. Tracing the global history of inequality from the Stone Age to today, Walter Scheidel shows that it never dies peacefully. The Great Leveler is the first book to chart the crucial role of violent shocks in reducing inequality over the full sweep of human history around the world. The "Four Horsemen" of leveling-mass-mobilization warfare, transformative revolutions, state collapse, and catastrophic plagues-have repeatedly destroyed the fortunes of the rich. Today, the violence that reduced inequality in the past seems to have diminished, and that is a good thing. But it casts serious doubt on the prospects for a more equal future. An essential contribution to the debate about inequality, The Great Leveler provides important new insights about why inequality is so persistent-and why it is unlikely to decline anytime soon.
Figures and tables
Introduction: The challenge of inequality
Part I. A BRIEF HISTORY OF INEQUALITY
The Rise of Inequality
Empires of Inequality
Up and Down
Part II. WAR
The Great Compression
Preindustrial Warfare and Civil War
Part III. REVOLUTION
Part IV. COLLAPSE
State Failure and Systems Collapse
Part V. PLAGUE
The Black Death
Pandemics, Famine, and War
Part VI. ALTERNATIVES
Reform, Recession, and Representation
Economic Development and Education
What If? From History to Counterfactuals
Part VII. INEQUALITY REDUX AND THE FUTURE OF LEVELING
In Our Time
What Does the Future Hold?
Appendix: The Limits of Inequality
- Description based on online resource; title from PDF title page (publisher's Web site, viewed 23. Mai 2019)
- De Gruyter.
- Contained In:
- De Gruyter University Press Library.
- Publisher Number:
- 10.23943/9780691184319 doi
- Access Restriction:
- Restricted for use by site license.
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