In the 2016 CBC Massey Lectures, former Special Advisor to the UN Secretary-General and international relations specialist Jennifer Welsh delivers a timely, intelligent, and fascinating analysis of twenty-first-century geopolitics.
In 1989, as the Berlin Wall crumbled and the Cold War dissipated, the American political commentator Francis Fukuyama wrote a famous essay, entitled “The End of History,” which argued that the demise of confrontation between Communism and capitalism, and the expansion of Western liberal democracy, signalled the endpoint of humanity’s sociocultural and political evolution, and the path toward a more peaceful world. But a quarter of a century after Fukuyama’s bold prediction, history has returned: arbitrary executions, attempts to annihilate ethnic and religious minorities, the starvation of besieged populations, invasion and annexation of territory, and the mass movement of refugees and displaced persons. It has also witnessed cracks and cleavages within Western liberal democracies as a result of deepening economic inequality.
The Return of History argues that our own liberal democratic society was not inevitable, but that we must all, as individual citizens, take a more active role in its preservation and growth.
About the author
Jennifer Welsh teaches international relations and is a fellow of Somerville College, University of Oxford. She is the author of At Home In The World: Canada’s Global Vision for the 21st Century (2004) and is a frequent commentator in the media on Canadian foreign policy and international affairs.
Ngaire Woods is a fellow in politics and international relations at University College, Oxford, and director of the Global Economic Governance Programme. She is the author of The Globalizers: The IMF, the World Bank, and Their Borrowers (2006) and many other books and articles on developing countries in global economic governance.
- Commended, National Bestseller