Rethinking The World                            

A Copernican Revolution in Viewing History        


What the Future Holds for the Global Society

Readers call it “thought provoking…a prodigious achievement.”

History is only the costume drama version of a unidirectional physical process. The global population and man-made objects form a single entity that expands through alternating chaos and order and reveals the pulsation of thermodynamic systems. This view of socioeconomic evolution, presented in Peter Pogany’s new book, Rethinking the World, reveals the mysterious and uncontrollable nature of the human journey.

Rethinking the World examines the past 200 years - the epoch of global systems. The first system, “laissez faire/metal money,” ruled social and economic relations during most of the 19th century and ended with the outbreak of World War I. The second and current system, “mixed economy/weak multilateralism,” began after World War II. The intervening period, 1914-1945, was a chaotic transition. The global society “rethinks itself” through macrohistoric turbulence, overhauling its institutions amidst colossal blunders and unimaginable horrors. This is the hallmark of self-organized life on the move toward greater size and complexity.

“The throbbing of history through its long cycles is a pattern woven into the fiber of our existence,” Pogany says. “We are sucked into a struggle that no nation or international body can alter or control. But we are not completely helpless. By placing accumulated data and current events in the broad context of physical and biological laws that affect the entire global collective, we can at least liberate our minds from illusions about the past and the future.”

“The physical necessity that affects the course of our world most profoundly, yet imperceptibly, is the second law of thermodynamics. It is the frictional force that our species is beginning to feel but is unable to identify. The prevailing outlook and ingrained behavior make it difficult for us to connect the dots. Signs of natural resource depletion, degradation in the ecological order, unexplained stagnation in the material welfare of the most developed countries, and increasing global poverty all appear as separate, individually solvable problems.”

As the world’s growing population and economy encounter their terrestrial limits, a new global system, called “two-level economy/strong multilateralism” will be needed. However, we cannot attain this new order by adjusting and reforming the current global system. We must pay the price of yet another violent Darwinian showdown among forcefully supported blueprints to reach a higher form of self-organization. A new episode of historic chaos is around the corner. It may have already begun. Even if humanity reaches an ecological steady state through the establishment of the third global system, only expansion into space - most vitally and imminently, the terraformation of Mars - can save it from drifting toward extinction. Rethinking the World takes a closer look at the psychological preconditions and philosophical aspects of close-knit individual and international cooperation.

Rethinking the World is the clearest argument on record for global population control and resource management. Beyond exploring the social and economic context required for such policies, it also describes the spiritual harmony, the “philosophical bridges between the materialist and transcendental perceptions of reality,” that loyalty directed toward the species’ survival may yet engender in future generations.

About the author: Educated in Eastern Europe and in the United States, Peter Pogany is an economist. He taught at the college-level for ten years. During the Cold War, Peter was contributing editor to the East-West Trade Report, a U.S. Congress-mandated quarterly on trade with communist-controlled countries. His overseas experience includes economic research positions in Europe and Africa and a teaching assignment in Asia. With an unquenchable appetite for history, philosophy, the natural sciences, and languages, he describes himself as “an eternal student.”

Book Data

 Title: Rethinking the World
 Author: Peter Pogany
 Publication Date: September 2006
 ISBN: 0-595-41079-0
 HC ISBN: 0-595-67868-8
 PDF EISBN: 0-595-85438-9
 LCCN: 2006908907
 Category: Social Science/General
 Reviewed: Yes
 Length: 360 pages
 Binding: 6x9 trade paperback/hard cover
 Retail Price: $23.95 (paperback)/$33.95 (hard cover)/$6.00 (Adobe E-book)

 Available from Ingram Book Group, Baker&Taylor, and from iUniverse, Inc.

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Shenandoah Valley Research Press