ABSTRACT

Profound Forces: The Pandemic as Catalyst   [open pdf - 0B]

From the Document: "The eminent British historian A.J.P. Taylor often referred to the way in which 'profound forces' influence the course of human history. By this, he meant that history in certain times has been changed by forces seemingly beyond the ability of humans to control. He wrote about the political and social trends that roiled Europe and led to both world wars. The profound forces seem 'so overwhelming as to carry all that is before them.' If ever that was true, it is so today. We are in the thrall of driving forces. The Covid-19 [coronavirus disease 2019] pandemic is the most recent. In my view, it has acted as a kind of catalyst speeding up and intensifying the other motive forces that predated it. By distracting and further dividing nations, the pandemic has made cooperation more difficult. The cumulative effect is to create an epochal time of crisis and looming danger. The pandemic itself has a solution. A vaccine may cure it, although not the human and economic consequences. The other forces do not yet have a solution. They require collective action. Their locus is primarily in Asia, now the center of gravity in world power."

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2020-05-21
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National Bureau of Asian Research
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National Bureau of Asian Research: https://www.nbr.org/
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application/pdf
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