The Age of Unpeace


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About the Author

Mark Leonard is the Director and Co-Founder of the European Council on Foreign Relations, a council of 300 European leaders including serving and former presidents, prime ministers, economics and foreign ministers, and the author of Why Europe Will Run the 21st Century (2005) and What Does China Think? (2008). He lives in London and Berlin.


The "age of unpeace" [is] an apt phrase for an era in which wars between states are uncommon but conflict is endemic... Leonard adroitly captures evolving trends in geopolitics over the past decade... Leonard's argument is all the more compelling because of the way his own beliefs have evolved. * New Statesman *
Compulsively readable, Mark Leonard's globe-trotting book not only offers us a fascinating and disturbing panorama, it redefines realism for an age of massive and toxic connectivity. Rather than fleeing into anachronistic visions of grand architecture and Cold War rhetoric, it demands that we face our actual problem. An essential course in geopolitical self-help. -- Adam Tooze, author of Crashed: How a Decade of Financial Crises Changed the World
There was a time when we all naively thought that a networked world would be awesome. But, as Mark Leonard argues in The Age of Unpeace, 'The connections that knit the world together are also driving it apart. It is not that the Internet and globalization have led to a war of all against all; more that the distinction between war and peace has broken down. 'Connectivity conflicts' are the signature style of the new 'unpeace', an old Anglo-Saxon word that, as Leonard persuasively argues, nicely describes our new era of financial sanctions, trade wars, infowars and cyberwars. Leonard, once a true believer in the European project, is that rare thing: a public intellectual willing to question his own assumptions and come up with fresh - and often surprising - ideas. If you want to understand the geopolitical significance of Grindr, the gay hook-up app, or the historical consequences of Sun Yatsen's Hawaiian childhood, look no further. -- Niall Ferguson, author of The Square and the Tower and DOOM: The Politics of Catastrophe

We now understand that we live and must live between the duelling utopias of unrestricted globalization and national sovereignty. The task is to make the best of our connections, and here Mark Leonard offers a creative and clarifying way forward.
-- Timothy Snyder, author of On Tyranny
One of Mark Leonard's great strengths is his sensitivity to the zeitgeist. This book is no exception. Rather than rejecting or ignoring the growing rebellion against connectivity, he accepts it and seeks to find ways of responding to it. The result is a highly readable book packed full of insights and ideas about what needs to be done. -- Martin Jacques, author of When China Rules The World

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