Is America on the decline? That’s the premise of the novel I am working on, but it’s not as if I came up with the idea. Here’s a fascinating article looking at the various theories alleging America is, or is not, on the decline. I agree with the final point, at least, which is:
Maybe civilizations do not devolve, as theorists of decline fear, but rather evolve, as from Darwin’s tangled bank where there is no perfection, merely complexity and fluxand where there is always something growing where something else has died. That might mean that what grows here is not the greatest, strongest, most perfect life that ever lived. But it also means that there’s such a thing as change that’s neither progress nor decline.
Fascinating questions, raised here. Perhaps more later.
By the way, I found the link for this over at Arts & Letters Daily, which still is an excellent website. Daily.