This chapter examines the relationship between world hegemonies and social conflict. It argues that the post-2008 wave of global social protest – as well as the clear incapacity of those in power to address the grievances emanating from below – are signs that we have entered both a deep crisis of the US-led world order and a long period of global systemic chaos. The current period of systemic chaos is analogous (but not identical) to the systemic chaos that characterised the transition from Dutch to British hegemony in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth century, and the transition from British to US hegemony in the first half of the twentieth century. Historically, the emergence of new world hegemonies (in the Gramscian sense of the term) presupposed a rising power with both the organisational capacity and the vision to supply reformist solutions to revolutionary challenges from below. These system-level challenges have become wider (geographically) and deeper (socially) over time from one world-hegemonic transition to the next; that is, there has been a ‘speeding up of social history’. Thus, world-hegemonic resolutions that worked (at least temporarily) in the past are no longer sufficient in the early twenty-first-century phase of historical capitalism, most notably due to the ecological limits of mass production/consumption capitalism and the changing balance of power between the Global North and Global South.