December 21, 2003

The Many Ways of Being Modern

Michael Elliott, the columnist of time magazine criticizes the American way of thinking that "they have defined the modern world, for better and worse". He cites one example of Western Crete: "it has become modern, but it hasn't become American".

he argues:

Over the next few years, Iraq will similarly define modernity in its own terms and at its own pace. Its constitution would have a special place for Islam in national life quite contrary to US way of separation of church and state.

The claim for the global centrality of the American experience, good or bad, is arrogant and out of date. Nations are capable of finding their own paths to modernity. Americans need to get used to it.

Amen to that.


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