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Samuel P. Huntington quotes (showing 1-30 of 30)

“The West won the world not by the superiority of its ideas or values or religion […] but rather by its superiority in applying organized violence. Westerners often forget this fact; non-Westerners never do.”
Samuel P. Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order
“Some Westerners […] have argued that the West does not have problems with Islam but only with violent Islamist extremists. Fourteen hundred years of history demonstrate otherwise.”
Samuel P. Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order
“Expectations should not always be taken as reality; because you never know when you will be disappointed.”
Samuel P. Huntington
“Islam's borders are bloody and so are its innards. The fundamental problem for the West is not Islamic fundamentalism. It is Islam, a different civilisation whose people are convinced of the superiority of their culture and are obsessed with the inferiority of their power.”
Samuel P. Huntington
“In the emerging world of ethnic conflict and civilizational clash, Western belief in the universality of Western culture suffers three problems: it is false; it is immoral; and it is dangerous.”
Samuel P. Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order
“Arabs and other Muslims generally agreed that Saddam Hussein might be a bloody tyrant, but, paralleling FDR's thinking, "he is our bloody tyrant." In their view, the invasion was a family affair to be settled within the family and those who intervened in the name of some grand theory of international justice were doing so to protect their own selfish interests and to maintain Arab subordination to the west.”
Samuel P. Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order
“Every civilization sees itself as the center of the world and writes its history as the central drama of human history.”
Samuel P. Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order
“Power remains strong when it remains in the dark; exposed to the sunlight it begins to evaporate.”
Samuel P. Huntington, American Politics: The Promise of Disharmony,
“Becoming a modern society is about industrialization, urbanization, and rising levels of literacy, education, and wealth. The qualities that make a society Western, in contrast, are special: the classical legacy, Christianity, the separation of church and state, the rule of law, civil society.”
Samuel P. Huntington
“It is my hypothesis that the fundamental source of conflict in this new world will not be primarily ideological or primarily economic. The great divisions among humankind and the dominating source of conflict will be cultural. Nation-states will remain the most powerful actors in world affairs, but the principal conflicts of global politics will occur between nations and groups of different civilizations. The clash of civilizations will dominate global politics. The fault lines between civilizations will be the battle lines of the future.”
Samuel P. Huntington
“Hypocrisy, double standards, and "but nots" are the price of universalist pretensions. Democracy is promoted, but not if it brings Islamic fundamentalists to power; nonproliferation is preached for Iran and Iraq, but not for Israel; free trade is the elixir of economic growth, but not for agriculture; human rights are an issue for China, but not with Saudi Arabia; aggression against oil-owning Kuwaitis is massively repulsed, but not against non-oil-owning Bosnians. Double standards in practice are the unavoidable price of universal standards of principle.”
Samuel P. Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order
“Collective will supplants individual whim”
Samuel P. Huntington
“People define themselves in terms of ancestry, religion, language, history, values, customs, and institutions. They identify with cultural groups: tribes, ethnic groups, religious communities, nations, and, at the broadest level, civilizations. People use politics not just to advance their interests but also to define their identity. We know who we are only when we know who we are not and often only when we know whom we are against.”
Samuel P. Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order
“God and Caesar, church and state, spiritual authority and temporal authority, have been a prevailing dualism in Western culture. Only in Hindu civilization were religion and politics also so distinctly separated. In Islam, God is Caesar; in China and Japan, Caesar is God; in Orthodoxy, God is Caesar’s junior partner.”
Samuel P. Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order
“the situation between Ukraine and Russia is ripe for the outbreak of security competition between them. Great powers that share a long and unprotected common border, like that between Russia and Ukraine, often lapse into competition driven by security fears. Russia and Ukraine might overcome this dynamic and learn to live together in harmony, but it would be unusual if they do.”16”
Samuel P. Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order
“reaffirming their Western identity and Westerners accepting their civilization as unique not universal and uniting to renew and preserve it against challenges from non-Western societies.”
Samuel P. Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order
“One grim Weltanschauung for this new era was well expressed by the Venetian nationalist demagogue in Michael Dibdin’s novel, Dead Lagoon: “There can be no true friends without true enemies. Unless we hate what we are not, we cannot love what we are. These are the old truths we are painfully rediscovering after a century and more of sentimental cant. Those who deny them deny their family, their heritage, their culture, their birthright, their very selves! They will not lightly be forgiven.”
Samuel P. Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order
“These transnationalists have little need for national loyalty, view national boundaries as obstacles that thankfully are vanishing, and see national governments as residues from the past whose only useful function is to facilitate the elite's global operations”
Samuel P. Huntington
“The essence of Western civilization is the Magna Carta, not the Magna Mac. The fact that non-Westerners may bite into the latter has no implications for their accepting the former.”
Samuel P. Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order
“The argument now that the spread of pop culture and consumer goods around the world represents the triumph of Western civilization trivializes Western culture. The essence of Western civilization is the Magna Carta, not the Magna Mac. The fact that non-Westerners may bite into the latter has no implications for their accepting the former.”
Samuel P. Huntington
“What, however, makes culture and ideology attractive? They become attractive when they are seen as rooted in material success and influence. Soft power is power only when it rests on a foundation of hard power. Increases in hard economic and military power produce enhanced self-confidence, arrogance, and belief in the superiority of one’s own culture or soft power compared to those of other peoples and greatly increase its attractiveness to other peoples. Decreases in economic and military power lead to self-doubt, crises of identity, and efforts to find in other cultures the keys to economic, military, and political success.”
Samuel P. Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order
“On January 3, 1992, a meeting of Russian and American scholars took place in the auditorium of a government building in Moscow. Two weeks earlier the Soviet Union had ceased to exist and the Russian Federation had become an independent country. As a result, the statue of Lenin which previously graced the stage of the auditorium had disappeared and instead the flag of the Russian Federation was now displayed on the front wall. The only problem, one American observed, was that the flag had been hung upside down.”
Samuel P. Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order
“There can be no true friends without true enemies. Unless we hate what we are not, we cannot love what we are.”
Samuel P. Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order
“The prevalence of anti-patriotic attitudes among liberal intellectuals led some of them to warn their fellow liberals of the consequences of such attitudes for the future not of America but of American liberalism. Most Americans, as the American public philosopher Richard Rorty has written, take pride in their country, but 'many of the exceptions to this rule are found in colleges and universities, in the academic departments that have become sanctuaries for left-wing political views.' These leftists have done 'a great deal of good for . . . women, African-Americans, gay men and lesbians. . . . But there is a problem with this Left: it is unpatriotic. It repudiates the idea of a national identity and the emotion of national pride.' If the Left is to retain influence, it must recognize that a 'sense of shared national identity . . . is an absolutely essential component of citizenship.' Without patriotism, the Left will be unable to achieve its goals for America. Liberals, in short, must use patriotism as a means to achieve liberal goals”
Samuel P. Huntington
“The philosophical assumptions, underlying values, social relations, customs, and overall outlooks on life differ significantly among civilizations. The revitalization of religion throughout much of the world is reinforcing these cultural differences. Cultures can change, and the nature of their impact on politics and economics can vary from one period to another. Yet the major differences in political and economic development among civilizations are clearly rooted in their different cultures. East Asian economic success has its source in East Asian culture, as do the difficulties East Asian societies have had in achieving stable democratic political systems. Islamic culture explains in large part the failure of democracy to emerge in much of the Muslim world.”
Samuel P. Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order
“ability of Asian regimes to resist Western human rights pressures was reinforced by several factors. American and European businesses were desperately anxious to expand their trade with and their investment in these rapidly”
Samuel P. Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order
“interaction of Western arrogance, Islamic intolerance, and Sinic assertiveness. Alone among civilizations the West”
Samuel P. Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order
“The dangerous clashes of the future are likely to arise from the interaction of Western arrogance, Islamic intolerance, and Sinic assertiveness.”
Samuel P. Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order
“In the post-Cold War world flags count and so do other symbols of cultural identity, including crosses, crescents, and even head coverings, because culture counts, and cultural identity is what is most meaningful to most people.”
Samuel P. Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order
“This changing international environment brought to the fore the fundamental cultural differences between Asian and American civilizations. At the broadest level the Confucian ethos pervading many Asian societies stressed the values of authority, hierarchy, the subordination of individual rights and interests, the importance of consensus, the avoidance of confrontation, “saving face,” and, in general, the supremacy of the state over society and of society over the individual. In addition, Asians tended to think of the evolution of their societies in terms of centuries and millennia and to give priority to maximizing long-term gains. These attitudes contrasted with the primacy in American beliefs of liberty, equality, democracy, and individualism, and the American propensity to distrust government, oppose authority, promote checks and balances, encourage competition, sanctify human rights, and to forget the past, ignore the future, and focus on maximizing immediate gains. The sources of conflict are in fundamental differences in society and culture.”
Samuel P. Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order


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