I am reading Samuel Huntington’s article entitled “The Clash of Civilizations?”, which was published in 1993 in Foreign Affairs.
The article turned into a much longer book that was published in 1996 by Simon and Schuster.
Samuel Huntington was a professor of political science at Harvard University. His work, “Clah of Civilizations”, explains how conflicts have evolved throughout history into what we are witnessing as the conflicts of the modern era. He wrote this essay after the collapse of the USSR and the end of the Cold War. He described the Cold War as a primarily ideological conflict between East and West that is Communism vs. Capitalism. However, this came after conflicts between nation states, which evolved in the 19th Century and was born in the Napoleonic Era.
His thesis is essentially that nations are becoming increasingly divided along cultural and religious identities, which sow the seeds for future conflicts. This idea seems highly prescient especially considering the Global War on Terror. I was reading a Joby Warrick article in the Washington Post published after the Berlin truck attack on December 19, 2016, and felt inspired to dig into Huntington’s work. Below is a quote from Huntington’s paper and links to Joby Warrick’s article, Huntington’s article, and link to his book.
Nation states will remain the most powerful actors in world affairs, but the principal conflicts of global politics will occur between nations and groups of different civilizations. The clash of civilizations will dominate global politics. The fault lines between civilizations will be the battle lines of the future.
(Huntington, Clash of Civilizations)
The Clash of Civilizations article