Evolution of international state system

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Through time the international system has undergone considerable change and evolution. The city states that were characteristic of ancient Greece, the feudal principalities that defined Europe in the Middle Ages, and the empires that have existed throughout recorded history (both Eastern and Western) have largely been replaced by the nation-states as the dominant actors within the international arena.

The state system was based on the idea that by concentrating power in a single head or center, the state itself could be sufficiently controlled and its environment sufficiently managed to achieve self-sufficiency or at least a maximum of self-sufficiency in a world which would inevitably be hostile or at best neutral toward each state's interests and in which alliances would reflect temporary coalitions of interests that should not be expected to last beyond that convergence.

In the subsequent paragraphs a brief account of evolution of state system is given.

The Medieval Background (Middle Ages: An Age of Faith 500 A.D. to 1500 A.D)

The Medieval Synthesis refers to the relationship between the

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