The Columbian Era: The Next Phase
The European and U.S. cultural, political and economic conquest of the world characterized the 1492-1992 period. Today the United States, although weakened economically, remains the dominant military power. Surveying the past, Noam Chomsky outlines what the coming era may bring. He contends the the current global, political and economic situation is unstable and perilous. Impending environmental and other long term crises aggravate the dangers. Circumstances offer opportunities for constructive steps toward genuine democracy, or alternately, they could provide the basis for increased repression and totalitarianism.
Noam Chomsky, by any measure, has led a most extraordinary life. In one index he is ranked as the eighth most cited person in history, right up there with Aristotle, Shakespeare, Marx, Plato and Freud. His contributions to modern linguistics are legendary. In addition to his pioneering work in that field, he has been a leading voice for peace and social justice for many decades. Chris Hedges says he is “America’s greatest intellectual” who “makes the powerful, as well as their liberal apologists, deeply uncomfortable.” The New Statesman calls him “the conscience of the American people.” He is Professor Emeritus in the Department of Linguistics and Philosophy at MIT and Laureate Professor of Linguistics and Haury Chair in the Program in Environment and Social Justice at the University of Arizona. At 95, he continues to inform and inspire people all over the world. He is the author of scores of books, his latest are Consequences of Capitalism, Chronicles of Dissent and Notes on Resistance.