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Dan Snow's History Hit

Why Empires Fall

Ep. 1212

For centuries, the Roman Empire commanded unparalleled control over the world around it. It expanded its borders through trade and conquest, sucking resources from the periphery into its thriving centre - Rome. And then, suddenly, everything changed. The Empire entered a state of crisis, and rapidly disintegrated. The West has experienced a similarly dramatic rise and fall over the last 3 centuries, moving from an era of global dominance to one of economic stagnation and political division. But is the decline and fall of empires inevitable? And what can be done to avoid the fate of Rome? In this episode, historian Peter Heather and political economist John Rapley join Dan to compare the West's current crisis with that of Rome, and discuss what comes next.


Produced by James Hickmann and edited by Dougal Patmore.


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