Immanuel Wallerstein

Wallerstein first became interested in world affairs as a teenager in New York City, and was particularly interested in the anti-colonial movement in India at the time. He attended Columbia University, where he received a B.A. in 1951, an M.A. in 1954 and a Ph.D. degree in 1959, and subsequently taught until 1971, when he became professor of sociology at McGill University. As of 1976, he served as distinguished professor of sociology at Binghamton University (SUNY) until his retirement in 1999, and as head of the Fernand Braudel Center for the Study of Economies, Historical Systems and Civilizations until 2005. Wallerstein held several positions as visiting professor at universities worldwide, was awarded multiple honorary degrees, intermittently served as Directeur d’études associé at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales in Paris, and was president of the International Sociological Association between 1994 and 1998. During the 1990s, he chaired the Gulbenkian Commission on the Restructuring of the Social Sciences.

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Articles

The Geopolitics of Arab Turmoil

September 27th, 2012

But they also insist that Syrian opposition forces may not organize violence from within Turkish borders. The Turks resist the talk of a no fly zone. The support they seem to be giving the opposition is rhetorical and humanitarian, but not military. Furthermore, the Turkish government is preoccupied with the Kurdish movements, both inside Turkey and in neighbouring countries, including of course Syria. Kurds in Syria seem to have taken advantage of the turmoil to organize control over Kurdish areas. And the Baathist regime is unwilling (or perhaps unable) to curb this. This both upsets and rattles the Turkish government. Once again, therefore, more talk than action.

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Commentaries

The Caliphate vs. Everyone Else

August 15th, 2014

In the endless geopolitical realignments of the Middle East, the Caliphate of the Islamic State (formerly ISIS or ISIL) seems to have frightened just about everyone else involved in Middle Eastern politics into a de facto geopolitical alliance. All of a sudden, we find Iran and the United States, the Kurds (both in Syria and Iraq) and Israel, Turkey and Bashar al-Assad’s Syrian government, western Europe (Great Britain, France, and Germany) and Russia all pursuing in different ways the same objective: stop the Caliphate from expanding and consolidating itself.

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