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Revolutionary wave

A revolutionary wave is a series of revolutions occurring in various locations in a similar time period. In many cases, past revolutions and revolutionary waves may inspire current ones, or an initial revolution inspires other concurrent "affiliate revolutions" with similar aims.[1][2] Historians and political philosophers have studied the causes of revolutionary waves, including Robert Roswell Palmer, Crane Brinton, Hannah Arendt, Eric Hoffer and Jacques Godechot.[3] The concept is important to Marxists, who see revolutionary waves as evidence that a world revolution is possible. For Rosa Luxemburg, "The most precious thing ... in the sharp ebb and flow of the revolutionary waves is the proletariat's spiritual growth. The advance by leaps and bounds of the intellectual stature of the proletariat affords an inviolable guarantee of its further progress in the inevitable economic and political struggles ahead."[4] However, the phrase also has been used by non-Marxist activists and writers, including Justin Raimondo and Michael Lind, to describe numbers of revolutions happening within a short period of time.[5][6] Various examples of revolutionary waves are cited.[7]

18th and 19th century

20th century

21st century

See also


  1. Mark N. Katz, Revolution and Revolutionary Waves, Palgrave Macmillan (October 1, 1999)
  2. Nader Sohrabi, Revolution and Constitutionalism in the Ottoman Empire and Iran, Cambridge University Press, 2011 p. 74, 83, 87, 90, 94, 96, ISBN 0-521-19829-1, ISBN 978-0-521-19829-5
  3. *Colin J. Beck, Dissertation submitted to Stanford University Department of Sociology graduate Ph.D program, March 2009, "Ideological roots of waves of revolution," ProQuest, 2009, p. 1-5, ISBN 1-109-07655-X, 9781109076554.
    • Note: Colin J. Beck also wrote The Ideological Roots of Waves of Revolution, BiblioBazaar, 2011, ISBN 1243608560, 9781243608567
  4. Rosa Luxemburg, Gesammelte Werke, quoted in Tony Cliff Rosa Luxemburg, 1905 and the classic account of the mass strike in Patterns of mass strike, International Socialism 2:29, Summer 1985, p.3-61.
  5. Justin Raimondo, The Revolutionary Wave: Tunisia, Egypt, Yemen – is the West next?,, January 28, 2011.
  6. 6.0 6.1 Michael Lind, Vietnam, the Necessary War: A Reinterpretation of America's Most Disastrous Military Conflict, Simon and Schuster, 2002 p 37 ISBN 0-684-87027-4, ISBN 978-0-684-87027-4
  7. Colin J. Beck, "Ideological roots of waves of revolution," p. 161.

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