These are some of the questions Boaventura de Sousa Santos aims to elucidate in a thorough and wide ranging essay.
Even states however have to adopt as the supremacy of the nation state is eroded, giving way to new transnational alliances and the convergence of the judicial systems as the supreme regulator of a globalised economy.
Will all these processes usher into a new model of social development, or will this lead to the crisis of the world system as others fear?
Single cause explanations and monolithic interpretations of the phenomenon therefore appear inadequate.
In addition, the globalisation of the last three decades, instead of conforming to the modern Western model of globalisation – that is, to a homogeneous and uniform globalisation – so keenly upheld by Leibniz as well as Marx, as much in theories of modernization as in theories of dependent development, seems to combine universality and the elimination of national borders, on the one hand, with particularity, local diversity, ethnic identity and a return to communitarian values, on the other.