The Coming Crisis between Germany and the United States: The Cultural Divergence of Advanced Nations

Globalization means ever narrowing distances between nations. But national value systems do not converge, especially those of advanced nations, although the world's elite labor under the false assumption that they do. The social anthropology of family systems explains the divergence of advanced nations; some are firmly rooted in liberal, individualistic values (the United States, the United Kingdom, France), while others have retained more authoritarian value systems and a specific potential for collective integration and action (Germany, Japan, Russia). In this talk, Emmanuel Todd will take the diverging paths of the U.S. and Germany (rather than all-too-obvious Russia) as a case study. Todd will discuss how the resistance of German culture to neoliberalism has turned the country, again, into the major European power, which today controls a continent, the industrial power of which is superior to that of the United States. As Todd will explain, Germany pursues independent economic and geopolitical objectives, some of which will lead to major crises, and he posits that it will be difficult for American leaders to go on denying that they have a problem with their too powerful ally.

This lecture is part of the World Disorder Lecture Series.

Date & Time

February 09, 2016 | 5:30pm


Wolfensohn Hall


Emmanuel Todd

Speaker Affiliation

Institut National d’Etudes Démographiques (INED)