The Tiber overflowed its banks in Rome in the autumn of the year 589 d.C. with such a force that dragged a number of churches to his step and left on the banks large banks of disturbing snakes in the water. A plague still worse struck the city two months after. That plague was carried by in front of nothing less than the pope rocking a city ruled nominally from distant Constantinople, under the constant threat of predatory barbarians, and that he had already suffered enough from the fall of the roman Empire. If in their heyday more than a million people swarmed the streets, now just twenty thousand desperate they survived barely among the ruins covered by weeds, in the forum left where grazed the cattle. The new pope Gregory walked through streets devastated by the plague after his consecration, and he seemed to see the sky raining down fire arrows fired by a bow invisible. Despite all of this, not despaired: “God is merciful and compassionate, and it is his will that we earn his forgiveness through our prayers”, he asked the crowd. Three days later, the plague subsided.
In his latest book –‘Domain. A new history of christianity’ (Attic Books)- the genius of narrative british historian Tom Holland kicks back in to account once more of the greatest story ever told, of how the religion founded by a small fringe group on the periphery of Rome survived persecutions, invasions, ‘pests’ and their own internal tension between the orthodoxy and the heterodoxy to serve as a bridge to civilization through the dark centuries of the middle ages and eventually give birth to one Illustration that would be against it. She also serves as a powerful antidote of hope in times of uncertainty like these of the coronavirus: our world doesn’t have to fall apart though, without doubt, will transform. And what better ‘expert’ in transformations that the historian Holland, who took up already in the step of cross roads core as the Persian war, the advent of Caesar or the crisis of the year one thousand.
And today? What are we to expect a new reconfiguration of global and release in the scepter of imperial America to Asia when the coronavirus is defeated? “It depends on how much damage cause to the lock to the western economies“, answered Holland. “If the united States can quickly recover (and historically, the united States has always bounced back quickly from the calamity), then I doubt that the impact on their status of superpower is too severe. If you have however a prolonged slowdown, then China could exploit its relative recovery of Covid-19 to buy swathes of the western economy at a low price. But I think it would be a mistake to underestimate the damage Covid-19 has done to China. As we can not trust any of the figures that presents your government, how can we know how many have died and the degree of damage that it has sustained their economy? One thing is for sure: the people in the West will not forget what government was the one who put the city where the Covid-19 originated under lock and key, but still allowed the aircraft to fly from it around the world. All the attempts of the propagandists to chinese to spin this and blaming the united States will only intensify the resentment of western“.
We will not forget what the Government did to the city where the virus originated under lock and key, but allowed the aircraft to fly from there
The clash of civilizations on a scale unsuspected is one of the assumptions in play in the bookies where it elucidates the future. The other is more “intimate” and has to do with the predictable upsurge within the western democracies of the populism of identity that already began to expand as a metastasis from the last global crisis. Because, if salvation today seems to be only national, what we are worth the great buildings of international solidarity forged in the past?
Create Holland that “certainly, everything that has happened has been injured to the globalization, but the real damage, perhaps, lies in the dimension of the metaphor. The Covid-19 gives a face terribly powerful to the fears and suspicions that the people who are opposed to globalization have fed for a long time. Now you can say that the communications without barriers, open borders, the supply lines that span the globe, in reality, they kill and they point to thousands and thousands of deaths. The instinct to lift the drawbridge will be (is!) very strong”.
“In Europe,” continues the historian, “this instinct could intensify even more if the European Union fails to join their member states most affected, and if the Covid-19 an impact particularly devastating in the Middle East and Africa. The hostility towards the mass migration, after all, will worsen greatly if the immigrants may be portrayed by those who oppose them as, literally, a plague. Equally, the threat that Covid-19 presents those countries with health systems are much more rudimentary than that enjoyed by the europeans served as a reminder that no country is an island. A pandemic is a global challenge and, therefore, can only be resolved with a global response. The whole world is as strong as its weakest link“.
The people who are opposed to the globalization, now you can say that open borders kill
The master of biologists E. H Wilson he wrote that human beings “have created a civilization of War of the Galaxies with emotions of the Stone Age, institutions, medieval, and technology that seems to be of the gods”, and Holland agrees not to value too much the course of moral progress in the world of today with respect to yesterday: “for just as the human responsible for the cave paintings thousands of years were not less intelligent than uswe , with our smart phones, our airports and our fans, nor are we less prone to superstition and irrationalism them. Our faith in progress, which is not merely faith, has given us standards of life and periods of life that previous generations could only have dreamed of. Equally, threatens the planet with climate change and mass extinction. This has always been the treatment of Prometheus“.