Postimperialism is a theory of political and social change inspired by the explosive growth of transnational corporate enterprise during the latter 20th century. Its foundations are derived from two primary sources: political theories of the modern business corporation and class-analytical theories of society. However, the postimperialist theory of class formation is predicated on power relations, a departure from conventional class analysis that renders the theory applicable universally to countries at different stages of ecomic development. Postimperialist thinkers contend that the formation of a global bourgeoisie, resulting from transnational class coalescence, coincides with the evolution of institutions and public policies that are compatible with socialist as well as capitalist principles. This book provides theoretical contributions to postimperialist theory as well as case studies of both individual countries (Britain, Cuba, the United States) and regions of the world (Africa, postcommunist Europe). It also contains historical analyses of the origins of postimperialist thought in Mexico and the United States. Topics considered include the transfer of cultural and ideological values, multilateral legal responses to transnational oligopolies, the problems of predatory corporate behavior and perceived neoimperial threats, working-class responses to the challenges of transnational enterprise, the effects of resistance to market-based ecomic reforms, opposition to imperial spheres of influence, and postimperialism's contributions to theories of international politics.
DAVID G. BECKER is Associate Professor of Government at Dartmouth College. He is the author of The New Bourgeoisie and the Limits of Democracy (1983) and coauthor of Postimperialism (1987). RICHARD L. SKLAR is Professor Emeritus of Political Science at the University of California, Los Angeles and has taught at universities in Nigeria, Zambia, and Zimbabwe. He is past president of the African Studies Association. His publications include Corporate Power in an African State (1975), Postimperialism (with three coauthors, 1987), and African Politics and Problems in Development (1991).