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Francis Fukuyama

Francis Fukuyama (born 1955) is an American political economist of Japanese ancestry.

Professor of political economy at the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies. Author of the controversial book The End of History and the Last Man and Trust: The Social Virtues and the Creation of Prosperity.

In "The End of History", Fukuyama argued that:

"What we may be witnessing in not just the end of the Cold War, or the passing of a particular period of post-war history, but the end of history as such: that is, the end point of mankind's ideological evolution and the universalization of Western liberal democracy as the final form of human government." (quoted from essay, "The End of History?")

Samuel P. Huntington responded that history is not over. In his essay and book, "The Clash of Civilizations", Huntington argues that the temporary conflict between ideologies is replaced by the ancient conflict between civilizations. The dominant civilization decides the form of human government, and these will not be constant.

Fukuyama himself later conceded that his thesis was wrong, but for a different reason: "we hadn't reached the end of history because we hadn't yet reached the end of science" (quoted from front flap of book, Our Posthuman Future). Fukuyama predicts that humanity's control of its own evolution will have a great and possibly terrible effect on the liberal democracy, because the liberal democracy assumes that all human beings are created equal.

Fukuyama is sometimes criticised as being a Luddite.

See also: transhumanism, posthumanism


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