Mackinder Forum Virtual Seminar #15: “We Predicted Political Upheaval in America in the 2020s”

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On September 13 at 1:00 PM Eastern Time (US), Professor Jack Goldstone presented a talk, “We Predicted Political Upheaval in America in the 2020s: This is why it’s here and what we can do to avoid it.”

ABSTRACT: A model designed to explain past revolutions and rebellions in Europe and Asia is now flashing warning signals for the U.S.; in fact the model shows the risk of violence is the highest it’s been in America since the 19th century. This is a result of inequality of wealth and income, political polarization, declining life expectancy, and government dysfunction. Looking at historical cases of countries that went down a similar path, the way out depends on fresh leadership, marginalizing extremists to build a coalition of moderates, and policy changes that adjust to the world as it is (especially changes in the nature of the economy and social composition) rather than trying to maintain a bygone social order.

BIOGRAPHY: Jack A. Goldstone is the Hazel Professor of Public Policy at the Schar School of Policy and Government, George Mason University. He has won fellowships from the Guggenheim, MacArthur and Carnegie Foundations, and is the author of Revolution and Rebellion in the Modern World and Revolutions: A Very Short Introduction.