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The Future of Power: And Use in the Twenty-first Century [Englisch] [Taschenbuch]

Joseph S. Nye
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29. Dezember 2011
Power evolves. At the beginning of the twenty-first century, unsurpassed in military strength and ownership of world resources, the United States was indisputably the most powerful nation in the world. But the global information age is rendering these traditional markers of power obsolete. To remain at the pinnacle of world power, the United States must adopt a strategy that considers the impact of the internet on global power resources. The Future of Power examines what it means to be powerful in the twenty-first century and illuminates the road ahead.

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The Future of Power: And Use in the Twenty-first Century + Soft Power: The Means to Success in World Politics + The Powers to Lead
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  • Taschenbuch: 240 Seiten
  • Verlag: Publicaffairs; Auflage: Reprint (29. Dezember 2011)
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ISBN-10: 9781610390699
  • ISBN-13: 978-1610390699
  • ASIN: 1610390695
  • Größe und/oder Gewicht: 20,8 x 14 x 2,3 cm
  • Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 4.5 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (2 Kundenrezensionen)
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 72.542 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)

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"(E)xcellent...Nye offers an illuminating distillation of the power relationships shaping a world in which the state with the best military can lose to the adversary with the better story." --The Financial Times "As power moves from west to east and from the palaces of dictators to the street, it is not just the identities of power brokers that are changing: so is the very meaning of power. No one is better placed to explain these trends than the scholar-statesman Joe Nye... The Future of Power contains important essays on both 'cyber power' and 'American decline', but what is most useful is Nye's subtle exegesis of the mechanics of more conventional forms of power." --The New Statesman "A concise, forceful statement of what Nye refers to as the liberal realist position in the US academy and in US politics... (which) paints a plausible scenario for the continuance of the US at the heart of the international system." --Times Higher Education Supplement "(W)hile the British generally take a wary attitude to international gurus, it is worth bearing in mind that what Nye... think(s) today has a habit of becoming the global consensus tomorrow. --Mary Dejevsky, The Independent"

Über den Autor und weitere Mitwirkende

Joseph S. Nye, Jr. is University Distinguished Professor and former Dean of Harvard's Kennedy School of Government. He has served as assistant secretary of defense for international security affairs, chair of the National Intelligence Council, and a deputy under secretary of state. The author of many books, he is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the British Academy, and the American Academy of Diplomacy.

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Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen
Von Amir
Format:Taschenbuch|Verifizierter Kauf
If the “Politics Among Nations” by the well respected professor Morgenthau is the Bible on Realism, "The Future of Power" by Professor Joseph S. Nye Jr. is the New International Version of the Bible on Power.
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2 von 3 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
4.0 von 5 Sternen interesting read! 24. August 2011
Von .
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Verifizierter Kauf
This is an extremely well written, thoughtful book about the different faces of power, and the implications for diplomacy and politics - highly recommended!
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Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen auf (beta) 3.9 von 5 Sternen  22 Rezensionen
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5.0 von 5 Sternen Balanced and Convincing 4. Februar 2011
Von Ann L. Hollick - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
Joseph Nye's new book on the Future of Power brings reasoned analysis to bear on anxious predictions of America's relative decline vis a vis a rising China. While not ruling out the danger of conflict, Nye sees no need for the U.S. and China to go to war in the 21st century if Chinese hubris and American fears can be held in check. This volume goes a long way toward achieving that worth while objective. Building on his earlier study of soft and hard power, Nye argues that China and the US have much to gain from working together on major global challenges ranging from financial stability to climate change. This cooperation would, in Nye's words, represent the exercise of "smart power."
17 von 19 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Excellent work 19. Februar 2011
Von JunkyardWisdom - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Verifizierter Kauf
The book focuses on how nations can exert influence. The two simplistic methods are hard power (mostly military strength) and soft power (cultural appeal, foreign aid, persuasion, etc.). Nye argues that both are important and that the proper balance between the two is what he calls "smart power." Nye focuses on rising nations that may not always see eye-to-eye with America. His conclusions strike me as accurate and remarkably well said. He has an upbeat view of America's future in the 21st Century. Academic but still approachable for the rest of us, this is a great book to read if you want to better understand America's role in the world.
46 von 58 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
3.0 von 5 Sternen American Empire vs. Global Governance 13. Februar 2011
Von David Hillstrom - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Verifizierter Kauf
The US has, since WWII, been the most powerful and influential country in the world. Following the collapse of the Communist system in 1990 it is the sole super power. Nonetheless, there have been limits to the extension of American power. The most obvious example is the defeat in Vietnam. More recently, in response to the terrorist attacks on 9/11, the US has become engaged in new wars of occupation in Afghanistan and Iraq. And the prognosis of those state building projects remains uncertain today.

Joseph S. Nye Jr. has provided a new book, The Future of Power, to assess American power and consider the future of America's reach. In some ways this book is an example par excellence of realpolitik. He offers a reasoned approach to assessing the limits of power and provides a methodology, which he terms `smart power,' as a strategy for the successful extension of American influence in the world. He explains that, while the US remains the dominate military power by far, it cannot successfully impose its will on the world order through military might alone. This is, as far as it goes, a rational critique of US policy and its continued reliance upon projected military strength. Indeed the US cannot afford the expense of maintaining military dominance and policing the world. So the author suggests a mix of soft and hard power that are measured against a prioritized list of goals in order to achieve the maximum influence possible. This is the essence of smart power. His advice would certainly be useful, if it were taken to heart by the many old cold-warriors who lead government policy. So from this perspective I think that The Future of Power is a worthy book.

However, in the long run not even smart power will be adequate. The US is losing ground economically in the world economy. Consequently, it will not be capable of maintaining its decisive lead in military prowess. Hence, the reliance on soft power will become ever more important. Why not recognize the trend and stand down earlier on the foolish race to maintain military dominance? In any case shouldn't one question the basic premise of Mr. Nye's book? Why is it important that the US maintain the maximum influence possible within the global community? The author never considers calling this unspoken premise into question. Surely there is a moral dilemma here. Hence, I recommend a more radical perspective on the issue of American power, such as that presented by Andrew J. Bacevich in his excellent book, Washington Rules.

David Hillstrom
Author of The Bridge
12 von 15 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen EXTRAORDINARY - The Only Word That Could Describe Nye's Work!!!!! - FIVE STARS 20. Mai 2011
Von Richad of Connecticut - Veröffentlicht auf
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I have read a book a day for several decades, and consequently it has been my subjective experience that about one out of every 100 books is a gem, an absolutely wonderful gift to the reader. This book is that gem, and one simply has to read it with an open mind to gain an understanding of how the world works. Regardless of what side of the political fence you find yourself on, the left or the right, you will find The Future of Power to be INTENSE, PROVOCATIVE, and NECESSARY.

One can choose to maintain their preconceived notions about power, but after reading this book, it becomes clear that such people will be swept aside by the future that Nye describes so clearly. Your understanding of power will never be the same. We are at an inflection point in world history, and our traditional understanding of extrapolating the past into the future will not be a guide for what is coming next, but this book will be such a guide. If I had to use single words to describe what is in this book, I would say:

* Original

* Brilliant

* Readable

* Clear

* Pragmatic

* Lucid

* Sweeping

* Influential

* Seminal

Nye comes to us with extraordinary credentials. The fact that he was Dean of the Harvard School of Government (JFK School) for several years, I do not hold against him. His work in government including high positions at the National Security Council, National Intelligence Council, and the Defense Department have allowed him both influence, and the ability to evolve on a real world basis.


The book is divided into 7 chapters spread over 235 pages divided into three parts:

Part I Types of Power

Part II Power Shifts - Diffusions and Transitions

Part III Policy

Of the 7 chapters, I found four to be so original that they are completely unique, and Nye's understanding or framework as to how the world works is not to be missed. They are:

Chapter 2) Military Power

Chapter 3) Economic Power

Chapter 4) Soft Power

Chapter 6) Power Transition: The Question of America's Decline


Nye is telling us what the future holds, we merely have to grasp onto it, and absorb it. This book is in the same league and influence, as Carroll Quigley's Tragedy and Hope. Quigley, the Georgetown University master historian who influenced Bill Clinton and his thinking more than any other scholar in Clinton's career.

Nye believes that those who think America is in a serious state of decline are mistaken because the traditional tools used to measure such a statement are no longer applicable. Power is no longer measured in nuclear missiles, military forces, or pounds of steel produced by an industrial economy. Power as Nye defines it now has to do with soft power, smart power, influence, persuasion and trust. Smart Power is a combination of the hard power of coercion and partly with the soft power of persuasion.

Joseph Stalin the Soviet dictator once asked how many divisions does the Pope have? Fifty years later, Russia and Stalin are relegated to the ash heaps of history and the Pope survives. The Defense Department spends $650 billion per year on Hard Power while the State Department spends $36 billion per year on Soft Power. David Hume the 18th century philosopher once said that "No human is strong enough to dominate all others acting alone". Today we can say the same thing about countries. India two centuries ago with 300 million was dominated by 100,000 British soldiers. In the 1800's France conquered Algeria with 34,000 troops. In the 20th century 600,000 members of the French Foreign Legion could not hold Algeria together.

We must no longer measure power in resources, or units of production. We must begin to measure it in terms of preferred outcomes. Our country represents only 5% of the world's population but 25% of the world's production. We shall probably maintain our position versus the world for the rest of this century, but only if we learn to understand the new dimensions of Power and how to evolve with them. This book unlike any other will begin to show us how, if we want to.


There have been 9 world wars since 1500, and what Nye is looking for now is the reemergence of China as a world power which it once was from 500 AD to 1500 AD before declining in the face of Western power from 1500 AD to this century. What Nye so wisely points out is that an economy equal in total size to ours does not mean EQUALITY.
America does not have to lose power, hard or soft. In fact the rest of the world is years behind our hard power. By ourselves we represent 45% of the entire world's defense expenditures - too much by any standard.

It is time to dramatically increase our soft power expenditures, to continue to maintain our edge, and perhaps expand upon it. As China continues to grow, they will have to consume themselves with the more than 1 billion have-nots in their society. They have over a billion people with less than 85 million doing well. There is no health care to speak of, and all of this has to change and be factored into what will happen to their economy and nobody, certainly not American economists are getting it right.


This book demands to be read, and analyzed, and thought over. Nye is perhaps unique in his understanding of power. To read this book is to be transformed, and enlightened, and certainly to see things differently than you thought they were. I loved it and believe you will too, and thank you for reading this review.

Richard Stoyeck
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5.0 von 5 Sternen The Future of the United States 30. Januar 2011
Von The Machine - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Verifizierter Kauf
"The Future of Power" is really "the future of American global power". Joseph Nye expands upon his Foreign Affairs essay (see November/December 2010 issue) to make a case for the use of smart power in U.S. foreign relations. Smart power is the ability to combine hard and soft power into a winning strategy. Thus, Nye recommends using a balanced combination of sticks and carrots in American foreign policy. Military power alone cannot accomplish U.S. foreign policy objectives. However, through the adroit and balanced use of military power, economic power and cultural power the United States will prevail globally. Cyber power is also essential to American foreign policy. Together, these strands make up the "DNA" for successful U.S. diplomacy.
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