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Eisenstadt-Multiple Modernities in an Age of Globalization+cite

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Recent events and developments, especially the continual processes of globalization and the downfall of the Soviet regime, have indeed sharpened the problem of the nature of the modern, contemporary world. Indeed, as we are approaching the end of the twentieth century, new visions or understandings of modernity are emerging throughout the world, be it in the West where the first cultural program of modernity developed, or among Asian, Latin American and African societies. All these developments call out to a far- reaching reappraisal of the classical visions of modernity and modernization. Two major interpretations of these events on the contemporary scene have emerged, one promulgated by Francis Fukuyama (1992) announcing the end of history - the homogenization of the liberal world-view and predominance of market economy, a perspective very close to the earlier theories of the convergence of industrial societies. The opposite view has been put forth most notably by Samuel P. Huntington (1992). While not denying the growing technological convergence in many parts of the world, this perspective emphasizes that the processes of globalization bring us not to one relatively homogeneous world but rather to a clash of civilizations in which the Western civilization is compared often in hostile terms with other civilizations - especially the Muslim and Confucian ones.
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  http://www.jstor.org Multiple Modernities in an Age of GlobalizationAuthor(s): S. N. EisenstadtSource: Canadian Journal of Sociology / Cahiers canadiens de sociologie, Vol. 24, No. 2,(Spring, 1999), pp. 283-295Published by: Canadian Journal of SociologyStable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3341732 Accessed: 18/05/2008 09:42 Your use of the JSTOR archive indicates your acceptance of JSTOR's Terms and Conditions of Use, available athttp://www.jstor.org/page/info/about/policies/terms.jsp. JSTOR's Terms and Conditions of Use provides, in part, that unlessyou have obtained prior permission, you may not download an entire issue of a journal or multiple copies of articles, and youmay use content in the JSTOR archive only for your personal, non-commercial use.Please contact the publisher regarding any further use of this work. Publisher contact information may be obtained athttp://www.jstor.org/action/showPublisher?publisherCode=cjs.Each copy of any part of a JSTOR transmission must contain the same copyright notice that appears on the screen or printedpage of such transmission.JSTOR is a not-for-profit organization founded in 1995 to build trusted digital archives for scholarship. We enable thescholarly community to preserve their work and the materials they rely upon, and to build a common research platform thatpromotes the discovery and use of these resources. For more information about JSTOR, please contact support@jstor.org.  Note on Society/Note soci6te Multiple Modernities n an Age of Globalization S.N. Eisenstadt I Recent events and developments, especially the continual processes of glo- balization and the downfall of the Soviet regime, have indeed sharpened he problem of the nature of the modern, contemporary world. Indeed, as we are approaching he end of the twentieth century, new visions or understandings of modernity are emerging throughout he world, be it in the West where the first cultural program of modernity developed, or among Asian, Latin American and African societies. All these developments call out to a far- reaching reappraisal of the classical visions of modernity and modernization. Two major nterpretations f these events on the contemporary cene have emerged, one promulgated by Francis Fukuyama 1992) announcing he end of history the homogenization of the liberal world-view and predominance of market economy, a perspective very close to the earlier theories of the convergence of industrial ocieties. The opposite view has been put forth most notably by Samuel P. Huntington (1992). While not denying the growing technological convergence in many parts of the world, this perspective emphasizes that the processes of globalization bring us not to one relatively homogeneous world but rather to a clash of civilizations in which the Western civilization is compared often in hostile terms with other civilizations -especially the Muslim and Confucian ones. While, needless to say, both these scholars point out to some very im- portant aspects of the contemporary world, yet to this author hey both seem to be incorrect. In my view, what we witness in the contemporary world is the Canadian Journal of Sociology/Cahiers canadiens de sociologie 24(2) 1999 283  284 Canadian ournal f Sociology development certainly not always peaceful and ndeed often confrontational - of multiple modernities. Such a view necessitates a far-reaching ppraisal of the classical visions of modernity nd modernization cp. Eisenstadt, 1996, 1973). Such a reappraisal hould be based on several considerations. t should be based, first of all, on the recognition hat the expansion of modernity has to be viewed as the crystallization f a new type of civilization, not unlike the expansion of Great Religions, or the great Imperial expansions of the past. Because, however, the expansion of this civilization almost always and continually combined economic, political, and ideological aspects and forces to a much longer extent, its impact on the societies to which it spread was much more intense than in most historical cases. This expansion indeed spawned a rather new and practically unique tendency in the history of mankind n the form of the development of uni- versal, worldwide nstitutional and symbolic frameworks and systems. This new civilization that emerged first in Europe ater expanded hroughout he world, creating a series of international rameworks r systems, each based on some of the basic premises of this civilization and each rooted in one of its basic institutional imensions. Several economic, political, deological, almost worldwide systems - all of them multi-centred and heterogeneous - emerged, each generating ts own dynamics, ts continual change in constant relations o the others. The interrelations mong them have never been static or unchanging, nd the dynamics of these international rameworks r settings have given rise to continuous changes n these societies. Just as the expansion of all historical civilization, modernity undermined the symbolic and institutional premises of the societies incorporated nto it, opening up new options and possibilities. As a result of this, a great variety of modern or modernizing ocieties, sharing many common characteristics ut also evincing great differences among themselves, developed out of these responses and continual nteractions. The srcinal modernity as it developed in the West, combined several two closely interconnected imensions. The first of these was the structural, organizational dimension - the development of the many specific aspects of modern social structure, uch as growing structural ifferentiation, rbaniza- tion, industrialization, rowing communications nd the like, which have been identified and analyzed n the first studies of modernization fter the Second World War. The second dimension can be designated as institutional, which is characterized y the development of the new institutional ormations, he modern nation-state, moder national ollectivities, new and capitalist-political economies, and a distinct cultural program hat is closely related to specific modes of structuring major arenas of social life. The classical heories f modernization, uch as the classical sociological analyses of Marx, Durkheim nd, to a large extent even Weber see Kamenka,  Note on Society 285 1983; Weber, 1968a, 1968b; Durkheim, 1973), have implicitly or explicitly conflated these different dimensions of modernity; hese approaches assumed that even if these dimensions are analytically distinct, they do historically use and become basically inseparable. Moreover, most of the classics of sociology as well as the studies of modernization f the 1940s and 1950s have assumed, even if only implicitly, that the basic institutional constellations which came together n European modernity, and the cultural program of modernity as it developed in the West will naturally be taken over in all modernizing societies. The studies of modernization and of convergence of modern societies have indeed assumed that this project of modernity with its hegemonic and homogenizing tendencies will continue in the West, and with the expansion of modernity, prevail throughout he world. Implicit n all these approaches was the assumption that the modes of institutional integration attendant on the development of such relatively autonomous, differentiated institutional spheres will be, on the whole, similar in all modern societies. But the reality that emerged proved to be radically different. The actual developments indicated in all or most societies that the various institutional arenas the economic, the political and that of family - continually exhibit relatively autonomous dimensions that come together in different ways in different societies and in different periods of their development. Indeed, the developments in the contemporary ra did not bear out this assumption of convergence and have emphasized the great diversity of modern societies, even of societies similar in terms of economic development, like the major industrial apitalist societies in Europe, he U.S. and Japan. Sombart's [1906] 1976) old question: Why is there no socialism in the U.S.? formulated n the first decades of this century attests to the first, even if still only implicit, recognition of this fact. Far-reaching variability developed even within the West within Europe, and above all between Europe and the Americas (U.S., Latin America, or rather Latin Americas) (cf. Goldthorpe, 1971; Eisenstadt, 1973, 1977. The same was even more true with respect to the relation between the cultural and structural dimensions of modernity. A very strong, even if implicit, assumption of the studies of modernization namely that the cultural dimensions or aspects of modernization are inherently and necessarily interwoven with the structural ones, became highly questionable. While the different dimensions of the srcinal Western project have indeed constituted the crucial starting and continual reference points for the processes that developed among different societies throughout he world, the developments in these societies have gone far beyond the homogenizing and hegemonic dimensions of the srcinal cultural program of modernity. Modernity has indeed spread o most of the world, but did not give rise to a single civilization, or to one institutional pattern, but to the development of several modern civilizations, or at least civilizational patterns, i.e. of
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