Civilizations in decline are constantly characterized by a tendency toward standardization and uniformity. The last stage but one of every civilization is characterized by the forced political unification of its constituent parts, into a single greater whole--Arnold Toynbee
Great new header image, Curmudgeon. :o)
Thank you and I join you.
Count me also as an inimicus et hostis of the new Soviet Union, the new Evil Empire. Revolution? Ich bin bereit.
Isn't Toynbee plain wrong? Didn't Rome split in two before she finally fell? Or, rather, her western half did. Mind you, I say "fell". Obviously I mean "transitioned into the Greater Barbarian Co-Prosperity Sphere".
I believe, dearieme, he said the last stage but one.
xlbrl, indeed, but that still makes him wrong. Penultimate stage - split in two. Ultimate stage - slowly dissolve into the barbarian world (Western) or centuries of retreat (Eastern).The alternative is that what T said is so ill-defined that you can make it agree with just about anything.
Do you see any civilisations rising - in a positive way?
Toynbee's point is not ambiguous any more than it could be original. He also wrote that civilizations in decline are constantly characterized by a tendency toward standardization and uniformity, which is certainly the very point of the European Union. It is a very old point, beginning as far as we know with the first civilization in Egypt. The same sequence has been repeated again and again: civilization may grow through innovations that are poorly understood, but eventually arrested under a centralized authority which intends to perfect it. America is no longer a federated republic, and we are weakening fast through centralization. Uniformity is an irresistable urge to weak and frightened minds. "Do you see any civilisations rising - in a positive way?" No. That will change, but this civilizational cycle has an amazing inertia, and will not permit it. Whether that change is in decades or centuries only Deogowulf knows.
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