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Article

Social Macroevolution: Growth of the World System Integrity and a System of Phase Transitions

World Futures: Journal of General Evolution. 2009. Vol. 65. No. 7. P. 477-506.

The title of this article unites two rather important notions – “macroevolution” and “the World System”. Those notions are used by different theories but they are intrinsically connected. We understand social macroevolution as a term denoting an important dimension of social evolution that includes a series of the most significant evolutionary transformations. It appears important to emphasize that the World System genesis and a series of its subsequent transformations can be regarded as nodal elements of the social macroevolutionary process. What is more, the World System formation was not only the most important result of all the preceding socioevolutionary macroprocesses, it was also a sort of borderline, beyond which it is totally necessary to distinguish the social macroevolution as a special suprasocietal component of social evolution (that is the one that does not pertain exclusively to any particular society). The main characteristics of macroevolution, such as irreversibility and directionality are manifested in the World System transformations.