The idea of civilization occupies a prominent and complicated place in the history of ideas and world history more generally. It has played no small part in shaping history; the demands of civilization have long been employed to describe, explain, rationalize, and justify all manner of interventions and socio-political engineering (Bowden 2009a). The significance of civilization is captured in the suggestion that it is one of a small number of ‘essential’ ideas intimately linked to the ‘whole history of modern thought and the principal intellectual achievements in the western world’ (Benveniste 1971: 289). One might add to this claim that, while civilization is a distinctly Western idea, perhaps its greatest impact has been felt in the non-Western world, where much of the aforementioned intervention and socio-political engineering has taken place, particularly since the Spanish ‘discovery’ and conquest of the New World.
|Title of host publication||The Routledge Handbook of New Security Studies|
|Place of Publication||New York|
|Publisher||Routledge, Taylor & Francis Group|
|Publication status||Published - 2010|