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Precarious Balances: The Middle Ages of the Next Millennium explores a comparison of the present century and the next with the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries, as a period of transition from one type of civilization to another. Goodwin compares the present socio-political trends with those of medieval Europe that developed the philosophy and the institutions that have dominated the last 500 years. He portrays the struggle between the choices that can be made and the potential effects they can have, discerning between what can and cannot be controlled. Goodwin proposes plausible alternatives to short term policies that may avoid the long term adversity he envisions now. He points out the downplayed realities of the twentieth century, a period dominated by technological achievement and the affluence of some, that actually was dominated by violence and a widening of wealth gaps. This pattern, he predicts, will lead to a new feudalism if action is not taken to redirect the socio-political tendencies now in place.
chapter 1 Introduction chapter 2 Getting Oriented: The Middle Ages of the Mind; Ripening Conditions; Millennialism chapter 3 Facing Reality: Faith's Role; Geopolitical Laminates; The Uncontrollables; The Great Game and Other Contests chapter 4 Making Choices: Asian Pressures; Mexican Keystone; American Blueprint; The Middle Ages of the Next Millennium chapter 5 Bibliography chapter 6 Index