The Biggest ‘We’


This idea of ‘Self’ is a little bigger than your neighborhood New-Age group. It is not just for Vegans. It is the original question. And the final fault line.

Here is Samuel Huntington from his encyclopedic classic, ‘The Clash of Civilizations’, that sits on every Foreign Ministers bookshelf.

A Civilization is the highest cultural grouping of people and the broadest level of cultural identity… Civilizations are the biggest ‘We’. [And] cultural identity is the central factor shaping a country’s associations and antagonisms…

The question: ‘Which side are you on? has been replaced by the much more fundamental one: ‘Who are you?’ Every state has to have an answer. That answer, its cultural identity, defines the state’s place in world politics, its friends and its enemies.’


Professors, more particularly than most other professions, like to be formally identified with all decorations on display. And the late Dr. Huntington shouldn’t have to ask.

Albert J. Weatherhead 3rd University Professor and Director of Harvard’s ‘Center For International Affairs’