East meets west: the world is round and time is cyclic



Publication Details

Balakrishnan, M. Stephens. 2013, 'East meets west: the world is round and time is cyclic', in M. S. Balakrishnan, I. Michael & I. Moonesar (eds), Actions and Insights - Middle East North Africa: East Meets West, Emerald Group Publishing Limited, United Kingdom. pp. xix-xxvii.

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While there seems to be a lot of debate around the issue of whether the center of gravitational power (economic or political) is moving eastwards from the West, 1 the truth is that a few centuries ago, the East was where the power was based. You have only to look at the video 'Welcome to the Anthroprocene'2 and understand the focus on the West is less than a century old. Some of the densest populations are in the oldest parts of the world (India, China, and Middle East).3 Tony Blair, as early as 2009, said during a talk in the UAE, 'Globalisation is changing society, but there is something else that is happening .... It is shifting power (back) to the East. The West ,for the first time in centuries, is coming to terms with the fact that global power is in the East- China, India and the Middle East. For a country like Britain, we are not going to be powerful any more unless we are allied with the East'.4 Did you know that 18 of the past 20 centuries, Asia accounted for over half of world output?

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