Ten Years That Shook the (Capitalist) World: The Book (2e)


During research for a textbook on international business, an intriguing series of apparently unrelated ‘episodes’ of events and historical processes revealed significant interrelated changes in three broad areas within a relatively short timeframe: the decade 1988-1998. These globalization dynamics have shaped the modern era, and they fall within the following categories:

      1. Multiple interruptions to the long march of globalization, a progression that had accelerated dramatically since 1945.
      1. ‘Once in a generation’ geopolitical and economic disruptions, including the dramatic collapse of the USSR, the end of the Cold War (round one), the formation of the European Union and the extraordinary rise of China and Taiwan as global economic powerhouses.
      1. ‘Step-change’ developments in communications infrastructure, underpinned by the convergence of the telecommunications and information technology sectors alongside emerging ‘disruptive’ business processes.

Since two significant episodes – the 1987/88 and 1997/98 global financial crises – bracketed a decade during which these globalization dynamics unfolded, the ‘Ten Years…’ title for this book selected itself.

An introductory chapter presents an overview of the fundamental principles of free trade, globalization and international business, alongside a discussion of uncertainty, risk and decision-making in ‘unknowable’ times. This ‘sets the scene’ for the 1988-1998 decade that is analysed.


Please click/tap the icon adjacent to each ‘tumbling dice’ heading to view highlights of the book’s content.
The Preface, Epilogue and References are presented unabridged.

Preface (Unabridged)
Introduction to the book’s scope, philosophy and structure.

Free Trade, Globalization and International Business.

Chapter One
A Rude Awakening for Globalization.

Chapter Two
Ich bin ein Berliner!

Chapter Three
The Berlin Wall Falls, Germany Reunifies, Comecon Unravels, The Soviet Union Dissolves.

Chapter Four
Premature Prognosis: The End of History?

Chapter Five
China’s Conundrum and the Clash of Freedoms.

Chapter Six
George Soros versus the Bank of England.

Chapter Seven
Japan’s Lost Decade?

Chapter Eight
Inside Fortress Europe and the ‘1992 Process’.

Chapter Nine
Time to Stop Talking. Multilateral, Rules-based ‘Free Trade’ is (Belatedly) Born: the World Trade Organization.

Chapter Ten
Windows ’95.  And the ‘Invention’ of the Internet.

Chapter Eleven
Globalization Interrupted: George Soros Returns, the Asian Financial Crisis, Russia Defaults.

Chapter Twelve
Why Genius Failed and No One Noticed.

Epilogue (Unabridged)
Capitalism versus Communism: Half-Time or Perfect Storm? And a Case for Optimism.

Appendix One
1998 – 2018: A Brief Overview.

Appendix Two
Milestones in the History of Globalization.

References (Unabridged)
Citations of all sources referred to throughout the book.



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All content © Colin Edward Egan, 2022