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Geography and Revolution$
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David N. Livingstone and Charles W. J. Withers

Print publication date: 2005

Print ISBN-13: 9780226487335

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: March 2013

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226487359.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CHICAGO SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.chicago.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Chicago Press, 2019. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CHSO for personal use.date: 21 October 2019

Space, Revolution, and Science

Space, Revolution, and Science

(p.27) 2 Space, Revolution, and Science
Geography and Revolution

Peter Dear

University of Chicago Press

In its broadest sense, historians and others use “revolution” to indicate some sort of discontinuity, or rupture, as E. J. Hobsbawm noted. But as Hobsbawm also observed, it sometimes takes quite a long time to certify whether a revolution really did occur at some particular time in the past. From this point of view, the political-social historian—or, to be more precise, the Marxist or crypto-Marxist historian—is reluctant to regard revolutions as being of central, driving importance in the ongoing processes of history. The real historical changes are macrosocial ones, such as the transition from feudal to capitalist societies, and revolutions are simply what Hobsbawm called “incidents in macro-historical change,” the moments at which the rupture of an old and increasingly insupportable system occurs and a new system comes into being to take its place.

Keywords:   revolution, E. J. Hobsbawm, historical changes, capitalist societies, Marxist historian, feudal societies

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