The Arab World Today

The Arab World Today

The Arab World Today

The Arab World Today

Excerpt

In 1902 James Bryce, using language that our more equalitarian and scientific generation carefully avoids, remarked in a lecture on "The Relations of the Advanced and the Backward Nations of Mankind": ". . . our own time stands eminent and peculiar in this, that it marks the completion of a process by which all the races of the world have been affected, and all the backward ones placed in a more or less complete dependence upon the more advanced." Just sixty years later virtually all these "backward nations" are at least politically "more or less" completely independent of the "advanced" ones.

It took Europe four hundred years to reach that apogee of its remarkable expansion to other continents. Now the burst of energy that propelled Europe seems to be stirring the new nations and states created out of Europe's overseas domains. Intensely nationalistic, they at once claim to be seeking to express their own nature and in fact seek to become more and more like their former rulers. Their histories are rather diverse but they all strive for the same future: national strength through "modernization."

There has been a quickening in the process of subjection and liberation. When the British were defeated by the thirteen American colonies they had been there for nearly two hundred years. When Spain lost its colonies in South America it marked the end of an empire three hundred years old. But Europe went into Africa on a grand scale only in the latter half of . . .

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