This study investigates the process of capitalist class formation in the North Atlantic area in the period between the launch of Woodrow Wilson’s ‘Crusade for Democracy’ in 1917 and the world economic crisis of 1974-75. The crisis, from which capitalism so far has found no way out, and which in the absence of a clear revolutionary dynamic has only raised the level of violence in the international system to a point where the threat of nuclear annihilation seems all too real, terminated an era of American hegemony and Atlantic integration. In this era, the specific form and content of the internationalization of capital allowed the bourgeoisie in the North Atlantic area to regroup and develop a series of comprehensive concepts of control by which it could reinforce its hegemonic position both nationally and, in the confrontation with extra-Atlantic challenges, internationally. From either perspective, the dominant feature of the era of Atlantic integration was the supranational framework in which bourgeois class rule was organized and legitimized: Atlantic, European, or various combinations of the two.
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