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The Threat of Western Universalism

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This article examines the concept of world unity from the time of enlightenment to the present age. It asserts that the enlightenment conception is responsible for the perversion of human nature since it elevates human reason over human emotion which has resulted into a narrow understanding of the world and the belief that science could guarantee peace. The paper debates the concepts of space and place in relation to westernization as a form of universalism. It shows how universalism is linked to space with no respect for diverse cultures according to geographical origins as the case is for localism which is rooted in place. It analyses the United States’ pursuit for market unity, a strategy which is propagated but with the ill intentions of maintaining her international superiority. The market unity project is indeed, an enemy of democracy and a threat to not only cultural diversity, but also to all life on earth. In this paper I therefore suggest that, contrary to the critics, difference and the horizontal structure of the Occupy Wall Street movement is advantageous. The fact that people are organizing in protests in spite of their diverse cultures is, of course, an act of solidarity and unity. By this they demonstrate their belief that a better world is possible and that valuing cultural diversity and difference is a prerequisite for coexistence and peace. Therefore, the main focus of this paper is to defend difference and diversity against world unity or totality or sameness.


International Letters of Social and Humanistic Sciences (Volume 10)
C. Tallman "The Threat of Western Universalism", International Letters of Social and Humanistic Sciences, Vol. 10, pp. 8-14, 2013
Online since:
Sep 2013

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