"What, after all, is the end of history -- in the teleological, species-encompassing monotony of either classic liberalism or revolutionary Marxism -- but a return to the colorful history of maps and chaps, sects and infidels, great walls and defenestrations, the past as telenovela? Indeed, following five decades or more of the most totalizing, ineludibly modern sort of ideo-economic (not to mention industrio-ballistic) conflict, we've reached a historical moment transfixed, and perplexed, by goings-on in Mesopotamia, revolts against Pharaoh, and cultural-fiscal tiffs between Latin and Germanic Europe," - Jonathan Liu.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to letters@theatlantic.com.