Is the 21st Century the new 12th?

A writer for Financial Times contends that our modern world is interestingly similar to the Middle Ages, dubbing the 21st century “neo-medieval.” Parag Khanna compares the United States to the Byzantium, while the European Union is the Holy Roman Empire. This parallel drawn between the US and the Byzantium is supported by the idea that the US blends its western culture with eastern culture in a pretty similar way. Khanna also makes mention of the “state of relative decline” that the US is experiencing, just as its 12th century counterpart did.

I think that this very brief article is quite interesting, as I personally love historical parallels. Why else study history except to learn how the past applies to the present? While the idea of the US crumbling into ruin is by no means comforting, this article is careful to end on a positive note. Our “first” Middle Ages ended with a Renaissance… perhaps our “new” Middle Ages will lead to the same!


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