Toward a Geopolitics of Hope posits a world order marked less by univocal “globalization” than by a grating geopolitics of rival capitalisms. Now that China, Russia, and much of the undemocratic developing world have embraced capitalism, this new Second World can no longer be regarded as a fleeting phenomenon. Globalization turns out to be anything but the steadfast ally of democratization it purports to be. Indeed, the Western democratic experiment of the last two centuries is starting to look very tentative and parochial.
For this the West has nothing to blame but itself. In many respects the new Second World was spawned by First World neoliberal engagement. The Washington Consensus has not only brought the world to the brink of an intractable economic depression, but has played midwife to a chronic geopolitical crisis. Hope, however, is anything but defeatist in the face of this globalist impasse. It draws upon a host of non-Western reformisms―with special attention to those of India, Burma, and the Arab Spring―to forge a Global Third Way. Likewise its moral realism bridges the classic imperatives of Third World social justice and First World security. Its paramount goal is not just a new “soft power” politics, but a post-globalist geopolitics of hope.
About the Author
William H Thornton is a professor of cultural studies and globalization at National Cheng Kung University in Taiwan. His previous books include Development Without Freedom: The Politics of Asian Globalization (co-authored with Songok Thornton, 2008), New World Empire: Civil Islam, Terrorism, and the Making of Neoglobalism (2005), Fire on the Rim: The Cultural Dynamics of East/West Power Politics (2002), and Cultural Prosaics: The Second Postmodern Turn (1998). He is the Editor for Asia at The Journal of Developing Societies.