Civilization and Its Contents
"Civilization" is a constantly invoked term. It is used by both politicians and scholars. How useful, in fact, is this term? Civilization and Its Contents traces the origins of the concept in the eighteenth century. It shows its use as a colonial ideology, and then as a support for racism. The term was extended to a dead society, Egyptian civilization, and was appropriated by Japan, China, and Islamic countries. This latter development lays the groundwork for the contemporary call for a "dialogue of civilizations." The author proposes instead that today the use of the term "civilization" has a global meaning, with local variants recognized as cultures. It may be more appropriate, however, to abandon the name "civilization" and to focus on a new understanding of the civilizing process.
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accivilization ancient Arab argue Ayatollah Khomeini barbarians barbarism become chapter Charles Darwin China Chinese Christianity civi civiliza civilizing process claims Clash of Civilizations concept of civilization contents Cook Cook’s course culture Darwin defining dialogue of civilizations Discontents discourse earlier Egypt eighteenth century Elias’s emergence empirical Enlightenment enter Essai Europe European civilization example existence fact Forster François Guizot Fuegians Fukuzawa Yukichi Georg Forster global civilization Gobineau Guizot human Ibid idea ideology Iran Iranian Islam Japan Japanese Johann Reinhold Forster John Stuart Mill Khatami latter lization Macartney manners means ment Mill Mill’s Mirabeau modern moral natives nature nineteenth century Norbert Elias notion of civilization one’s political question quotation race regard reified religion represented scholar sci-tech scientific sense Sigmund Freud social society South Seas species superiority Tehran term civilization theory thinking tion Tocqueville University Press Voyage West word civilization York