The West needs to grow up

Jul 30, 2022 by

by Paul Kingsnorth, unherd:

[…] I find it useful, in trying to parse the madness of that culture war, to see the time we are living in as what I have come to call a culture of inversion. The West’s ongoing decline has caused its elites to lose faith in their cultural inheritance, and this loss of faith has now reached pathological proportions. As a result, the leading lights in Western society — the cultural elites, and sometimes the political and economic elites too — are dedicated not to upholding the cultural forms they inherited, but to turning them on their heads, or erasing them entirely.

In the 50 years I have spent on earth, most of it in post-imperial Britain, that loss of faith has manifested everywhere. If you want to “get on” in Britain — which means to win the approval of the upper-middle class elite which runs the show — it has long been an unspoken rule that you cannot be seen to commit yourself to any of the pillars of the old orthodoxy which two World Wars fatally wounded and the Sixties counterculture decisively finished off.

Patriotism, Christianity, cultural conservatism, sexual modesty, even a mild nostalgia for a vanished rural England or a love of once-canonical novels: all are more or less verboten, and the attitude towards them is rapidly hardening. Until recently simply giggled at or patronised, these kinds of views in the 2020s may see you labelled a “white supremacist”, or the more general but still-lethal “hater”. The old world is again running up like parchment in the fire, and nobody who wants to be part of the new one can be seen to defend it.

It took me quite a while to work out the parameters and rules of the culture of inversion. The swirling chaos around me only started to make sense when I understood that it has not come about because new things are loved, but because old things are despised. This is not a new culture being built: it is an old one finally being administered its coup de grace.

Read here

[Editor’s note: This explains why the Lambeth Conference is not just a debate between conservative and liberal Christians about the church. It is is a ‘front’, one of the most important at the moment, in the culture war. In the West, particularly in Western Europe,  the progressives have been in control for some time. At Lambeth we are seeing a counter-insurgency by the global south.]

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