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Brazilian Journal of Political Economy

versão impressa ISSN 0101-3157versão On-line ISSN 1809-4538


ACCO, MARCO ANTONIO. The states, the capitalist world system and the interstate system: a critical analysis on the contributions of Immanuel Wallerstein. Brazil. J. Polit. Econ. [online]. 2018, vol.38, n.4, pp.708-730. ISSN 1809-4538.

National States are one of the central issues in the contemporaneous debate in the world, an extensive agenda that has generated important approaches in harsh dispute on the pace, direction, and depth of possible transformations of the state in the last decades. This article aims to reconstruct and critically analyze the concepts, attributions, possibilities, roles and impasse experienced by national States in the modern world system as found in the formulation of Immanuel Wallerstein. With this purpose, this article makes a journey through Wallerstein’s extensive work, retaining the main components of his formulation on the State in its interactions with the capitalist world system and the interstate system. It begins with a synthesis of Wallerstein’s formulations on historical systems as the correct unity of analysis, the historical forms of these systems, until the concepts of capitalist world system, State and interstate system as crucial categories. Based on these foundations, then, it explores Wallerstein’s analysis on national States today, the contemporaneous crisis of the world-system, as well as the possibilities and dilemmas for the action of national States in this context. The conclusions address limits and opportunities offered by Wallerstein’s challenging approach. When national solutions seem to fail around the world, a return to Wallerstein’s work and his perspective centered on the capitalist world system may reveal relevant findings.

Palavras-chave : Contemporaneous social theory; world-system; State; Immanuel Wallerstein.

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