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End of History

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Information about End of History
Education

Published on December 25, 2008

Author: brianbelen

Source: slideshare.net

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Slides on the End of History (Francis Fukuyama) for an undergraduate course in Political Thought that I taught between 2003-2005.
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the end of history (?)

Overview Francis Fukuyama The “End of History” argument Philosophical and practical underpinnings of the “End of History” Implications of this “End of History” to liberal democracy

Francis Fukuyama

The “End of History” argument

Philosophical and practical underpinnings of the “End of History”

Implications of this “End of History” to liberal democracy

Francis Fukuyama… … is still very much alive.  Social science professor/researcher Teaches at Johns Hopkins University and is associated with the RAND Corporation Books include: The End of History and the Last Man , The Great Disruption , Trust , and Our Posthuman Future (etc).

… is still very much alive. 

Social science professor/researcher

Teaches at Johns Hopkins University and is associated with the RAND Corporation

Books include: The End of History and the Last Man , The Great Disruption , Trust , and Our Posthuman Future (etc).

The Cold War Period of political tension between the “First World” Western Democracies and the “Second World” Communist States It was fundamentally a war over influence (over the “Third World”) Fukuyama’s claim: The end of the cold war was not just the end of an era, but the end of history itself.

Period of political tension between the “First World” Western Democracies and the “Second World” Communist States

It was fundamentally a war over influence (over the “Third World”)

Fukuyama’s claim: The end of the cold war was not just the end of an era, but the end of history itself.

The End of History “… the end point of mankind’s ideological evolution and the universalization of Western liberal democracy as the final form of human development.” Hence, it is an intellectual triumph: that is, its basic principles have already been perfected and can go unchallenged Liberal democracy arises as the “universal homogenous state”

“… the end point of mankind’s ideological evolution and the universalization of Western liberal democracy as the final form of human development.”

Hence, it is an intellectual triumph: that is, its basic principles have already been perfected and can go unchallenged

Liberal democracy arises as the “universal homogenous state”

Philosophical Bases Marx Dialectical materialism: history progresses according to material forces Establishment of a communist utopia would be the end of history However, materialist explanations cannot fully account for the entirety of human action

Marx

Dialectical materialism: history progresses according to material forces

Establishment of a communist utopia would be the end of history

However, materialist explanations cannot fully account for the entirety of human action

Philosophical Bases Hegel Hegelian dialectic: contradictions that drive history exist in the realm of human consciousness on the level of ideas The world is shaped in the likeness of these ideas Ideas = Ideology in its broadest sense History progresses to weed out the contradictions in ideas

Hegel

Hegelian dialectic: contradictions that drive history exist in the realm of human consciousness on the level of ideas

The world is shaped in the likeness of these ideas

Ideas = Ideology in its broadest sense

History progresses to weed out the contradictions in ideas

Practical Bases In 1806, Hegel made the claim that Napoleon’s victory at Jena marked the end of history The victory represented the universalization and actualization of the principles of the French revolution “ Liberte, egalite, fraternite ” As such, there was no more room for the improvement of these principles

In 1806, Hegel made the claim that Napoleon’s victory at Jena marked the end of history

The victory represented the universalization and actualization of the principles of the French revolution

“ Liberte, egalite, fraternite ”

As such, there was no more room for the improvement of these principles

Practical Bases Since then, numerous ideologies have arisen that oppose the basic tenets of liberal democracy Fascism Communism/Marxism Religious fundamentalism Nationalism/Ethnocentrism Yet none of these have been able to survive the historical process

Since then, numerous ideologies have arisen that oppose the basic tenets of liberal democracy

Fascism

Communism/Marxism

Religious fundamentalism

Nationalism/Ethnocentrism

Yet none of these have been able to survive the historical process

Thus… “The state that emerges at the end of history is liberal insofar as it recognizes and protects through a system of law man’s universal right to freedom, and democratic insofar as it exists only with the consent of the governed.”

“The state that emerges at the end of history is liberal insofar as it recognizes and protects through a system of law man’s universal right to freedom, and democratic insofar as it exists only with the consent of the governed.”

Implications In what way has history “ended”? Only on the level of ideas There is no room for improving the principles of liberal democracy nor for questioning them It still remains to extend these ideas and better implement them The world will be divided into the “historical” and the “post-historical” All states will become liberally democratic only in the long term

In what way has history “ended”?

Only on the level of ideas

There is no room for improving the principles of liberal democracy nor for questioning them

It still remains to extend these ideas and better implement them

The world will be divided into the “historical” and the “post-historical”

All states will become liberally democratic only in the long term

Implications With history at an end, the sole remaining preoccupation for man will be to meet human needs Economics, not politics, becomes man’s primary pursuit Alternatively, it may be said that liberal democracies have no “higher” ideals to offer man Individuals become “men without chests”

With history at an end, the sole remaining preoccupation for man will be to meet human needs

Economics, not politics, becomes man’s primary pursuit

Alternatively, it may be said that liberal democracies have no “higher” ideals to offer man

Individuals become “men without chests”

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