Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Semester of Degree Completion


Thesis Director

Richard A. Wandling


While established literature defines the terms in which a hegemonic transition would occur between great powers, it does not define the precise process. This thesis argues that the perceptions of the rising power affects the violence levels of the transition. The perception of hegemonic action as well as the rising power's role in the world fundamentally affect the way in which transitions do occur. These perceptions are formed through a knowledge of the internal intentions of the rising power which can be explored through the history of the country, the foreign policy decision-making structure, as well as external cues given to the hegemon. This is established through two prior examples of hegemonic transitions as well as an analysis of the likely future transition between the United States of America and the People's Republic of China.