但在二十年前的 1997 年，当杜金出版《地缘政治基础》（The Foundation of Geopolitics）一书时，俄罗斯正因为经济崩溃、车臣军事行动的失败以及北约计划东扩，处在一个自尊心极度受挫的时期，杜金的“欧亚主义”，“根植于伟大的俄罗斯帝国传统的主权、价值和信仰”，混合了东正教、神秘学、占卜术、法西斯主义、后现代主义和文化理论，终于在后苏联的社会土壤里开出花来。《地缘政治基础》出版后洛阳纸贵，各大书店纷纷开设地缘政治专柜，俄罗斯杜马甚至成立了“地缘政治委员会”，用杜金自己的话说，他的理论“就像一个病毒，我写下了这个程序，然后它就自己复制，蔓延开来”。
Although the concept of hegemony in Critical Theory is based on Antonio Gramsci’s theory, it is necessary to distinguish this concept’s position on Gramscianism and neo-Gramscianism from how it is understood in the realist and neo-realist schools of IR.
The classical realists use the term “hegemony” in a relative sense and understand it as the “actual and substantial superiority of the potential power of any state over the potential of another one, often neighboring countries.” Hegemony might be understood as a regional phenomenon, as the determination of whether one or another political entity is considered a “hegemon” depends on scale. Thucydides introduced the term itself when he spoke of Athens and Sparta as the hegemons of the Peloponnesian War, and classical realism employs this term in the same way to this day. Such an understanding of hegemony can be described as “strategic” or “relative.”
In neo-realism, “hegemony” is understood in a global (structural) context. The main difference from classical realism lies in that “hegemony” cannot be regarded as a regional phenomenon. It is always a global one. The neorealism of K. Waltz, for example, insists that the balance of two hegemons (in a bipolar world) is the optimal structure of power balance on a world scale[ii]. R. Gilpin believes that hegemony can be combined only with unipolarity, i.e., it is possible for only a single hegemon to exist, this function today being played by the USA.
In both cases, the realists comprehend hegemony as a means of potential correlation between the potentials of different state powers.
Gramsci's understanding of hegemony is completely different and finds itself in a completely opposite theoretical field. To avoid the misuse of this term in IR, and especially in the TMW, it is necessary to pay attention to Gramsci’s political theory, the context of which is regarded as a major priority in Critical Theory and TMW. Moreover, such an analysis will allows us to more clearly see the conceptual gap between Critical Theory and TMW.