In a world where the natural and the unnatural emerge as shifting configurations of matter and meaning, cultural theory can and should expand its frame of reference beyond what the “natural sciences” have left over, to embrace the spectrum of phenomena in which culture is cultivated.
Over the last thousand years, Finland, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania have had multiple identities and been members of several empires. Now, writes Estonian president Toomas Hendrik Ilves, “we should be looking to create identities that go beyond those that history and others have foisted upon us”.
Towards a multipolar and diverse world?
“Triumphant historical unidirectionality is not only simplistic, it may also be extremely dangerous.” Rein Müllerson critiques both classical Marxism and free-market capitalism, with their faith in ineluctable progress, at the same time asking how far universal claims for social justice are reconcilable with the multipolar global system.