How the West Was SpunIssue: Spring 1999
David Gress, From Plato to Nato (New York: Free Press, 1998), 592 pp., $28.
Christopher Coker, Twilight of the West (Boulder, co: Westview Press, 1998), 203 pp., $28.
Is the West an idea? A civilization? Or a set of political
arrangements? Plainly it is all three and, as a result, difficult to
pin down between hard covers. For if we talk about the decline of the
West, we may be discussing the difficulties that NATO encounters in
formulating policy toward the Balkans, or the rise of ideologies such
as environmentalism that blame the problems of the world on Western
science and capitalism, or the debasement of Western (and other)
cultures by Hollywood's entertainment industry. Or ten other topics.