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Dialogue and Universalism

Volume 29, Issue 1, 2019

Philosophy in an Age of Crisis, Part I

Andrew Fiala
Pages 37-56

On Thinking Globally and Acting Locally
Resurgent Nationalism and the Dialectic of Cosmopolitan Localism

This paper considers the extent to which we already live in a cosmopolitan era. Resurgent nationalism is explained as a reactionary response to the success of cosmopolitanization. Cosmopolitanization is further explained as a dialectical process. Contemporary cosmopolitanism emerges against the backdrop of Eurocentric globalization associated with the colonial era. While the Eurocentric legacy must be rejected, it has left us with a cosmopolitan world. Other dialectical processes emerge in consideration of the importance of local and multicultural issues. Cosmopolitanization is a process that must work to connect global processes with local concerns. The paper situates this argument in consideration of events in Peru, in connection with the rise of Donald Trump in the United States, and in relation to several examples of the cosmopolitan dialectic. Despite some dialectical setbacks, the paper concludes that we are already operating in a world in which globally diverse ideas and practices are already in dialogue. The challenge is to continue the cosmpolitanizing conversation, while remaining responsive to the needs of local communities.

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