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ERIC Number: ED214854
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1982
Pages: 26
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: 0
ISBN: ISBN-0-911646-11-6
The Moving Cultural Frontier of World Order: From Monotheism to North-South Relations.
Mazrui, Ali A.
This essay argues that the history of the international system has revolved around a moving frontier of cultural exclusivity. It is one of a series of working papers commissioned by the World Models Project in its effort to stimulate research, education, dialogue, and political action aimed at contributing to a movement for a just world order. Originating under monotheism, the cultural frontier has been characterized by a persistent "us/them" dichotomy. Civilizations which anthropomorphized God in monarchical terms tended to divide the world between the God-fearing and sinner. This tendency was reinforced by the culture of politics which differentiated supports from adversaries. Both were embodied in early international law such that a system of rules for civilized nations did not apply to "them"--the rest of the world--thus opening the door to imperialism and eventual class stratification in the international system. Although the cultural frontier has been moving due to secular challenges, the major challenges to Judaeo-Christian monotheism--Marxism and Islam--are themselves dualistic: the Marxist dialectic is inherently of this nature as is the tension between good and evil in Islam. The interrelationship between major cultural themes in today's world, coupled with a developmental system of stratification which is based on technical know-how, suggests that important but hidden problems of a cultural nature are contained in the world order agenda. (Author/RM)
Institute for World Order, 777 United Nations Plaza, New York, NY 10017 ($2.00, 5-25 copies, $1.50).
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: World Order Models Project.
Authoring Institution: Institute for World Order, New York, NY.
Identifiers: World Order
Note: Paper presented at the Working Group on "Culture, Power and Global Transformation" of the World Order Models Project (Lisbon, Portugal, July 13-20, 1980).