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Drawing on political theory, comparative politics, international relations, psychology and classics, Ned Lebow offers insights into why social and political orders form, how they evolve, and why and how they decline. Following The Tragic Vision of Politics and A Cultural Theory of International Relations, this book thus completes Lebow's trilogy with an original theory of political order. He identifies long- and short-term threats to political order that are associated respectively with shifts in the relative appeal of principles of justice and lack of self-restraint by elites. Two chapters explore the consequences of late-modernity for democracy in the United States, and another chapter, co-authored with Martin Dimitrov, the consequences for authoritarianism in China. The Rise and Fall of Political Orders forges new links between political theory and political science via the explicit connection it makes between normative goals and empirical research.