The History of our Times

Saturday 27th August   

When the history of our time comes to be written, I wonder what they will say.  Will they commend our good sense, our tolerance, our understanding of the world we live in, or, more likely will they condemn us for our lack of foresight, our greed and our stupidity. And, of course, we just don’t know. When one looks back a mere one hundred years the world the Edwardians (and Grandma of course as a young woman) lived in must have seemed very secure and surely nothing was about to happen to upset this ordered and civilised world.  They were living on the very edge of World War One, and I am sure that very few people were able to predict what was about to follow.

What concerns me most, I suppose, about the way we are conducting ourselves at present is that we are forcing Western Values and Western Culture on everyone.  Will there simply be one culture in, say, one hundred years time.  With the instant dissemination of ideas on the internet, and the seemingly unstoppable globalisation of business, what will happen to people’s cultural identity?  Will it disappear altogether or maybe become entrenched in different, more subtle, ways.

And will there be some new invention, which will make computers look stupid.  Maybe that dream of science fiction writers of Artificial Intelligence is about to be realised.  Maybe humans will not be the only things capable of clear and rational thought; if they ever really were.  And will the world in one hundred years time be run by machines which never make mistakes, leaving humans to exist peacefully with each other. We all know the answer to that one, don’t we? Or, in the words of one of Grandma’s favourite songs…. “Que Sera, Sera, Whatever will be, will be, the future’s not ours to see, Que Sera Sera.”