The World Explored, the World Suffered Education Issue Nr. 25 December 2019 - Page 14

So according to this, we should pass over in silence all comparative judgments based on our knowledge of what is good and what is not. We shall not, for example, think it is meritorious to have learned to build railroads before the Indians and then use this meritorious skill to improve the infrastructure of India (exactly because their culture did not possess this instrumental and scientific knowledge). We should not have used the skills we historically acquired in order to map out the area of India for the purposes of government, law, and defense. This, of course, does not necessitate historicism as Marx's theory did but "culturism" does remind one of the Marxist view of the historically determined fate of the proletariat that only historical laws could rectify. The cultural difference between classes is blamed for many of the ills of society. This is a position which is at least as divisive for a society as racism. What this brought to our attention is the fact that looking blindly for differences rather than for what humans have in common leads to divisions that cannot be reconciled without conflict. Elevating this thinking to the cultural/national level results in the same deterministic difficulties that can only be escaped by reference to the importance of the Kantian idea of Freedom. More controversially, such an idea perhaps presages a globalist community that has a duty to validate the idea of the equality among nations, thus actualizing the idea of the universality of human rights which may be part of the globalization project. Hannah Arendt claimed that Imperialism and its ambiguous spirit of "Expansion" was not sufficiently controlled and formed by the nation-state and that one of the results was the totalitarianism we saw in the 20th century. If this is true then the will to extend one's activities beyond national borders may have positive as well as negative consequences. If there were a study of the "science of imperialism" it might reveal that there are assumptions that are shared by both forms of activity. We have however argued that an ethical evaluation of so-called Imperial activity might reveal either ambiguous intentions or even good intentions that do not justify the normative criticisms of these forms of activity that we are accustomed to. Global intentions to dominate the world might have more in common with the scientific intention to "master" the physical world then we realized.