Politicians have long claimed that Western Civilization is the epitome of democratic values and international stability. Yet it is less than clear who is - or is t - part of the West. Germany, for example, was Western Europe's sworn enemy for much of the early twentieth century, but emerged as a staunch Western ally after World War II. Patrick Jackson's dense, penetrating political geneaology explains how the Marshall Plan re-invented the West to include a reconstructed Germany - a move critical to the development of the postwar world order. Civilizing the Enemy skillfully dissects our concepts of the West and Western Civilization, explaining how they were shaped and given weight in modern international relations, and demonstrating the puzzling persistence of these concepts in the face of contradictory realities. It will stand as a powerful tonic to simplistic tions of a clash of civilizations.
Patrick Thaddeus Jackson is Assistant Professor of International Relations in the school of International Service at American University.