Pandaemonium, by Daniel Patrick Moynihan
Pandaemonium, in Milton’s Paradise Lost, is the capital of hell. In Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan’s latest book, it designates the ethnic turmoil engulfing the world in the 20th century. Moynihan’s purpose is both to censure the shortsightedness of the world’s leaders for failing to foresee this turmoil and to warn of its abiding dangers.
In the 19th century, it was generally expected that the amalgamation of the world’s economies would cause nationalism to subside and ultimately to disappear. Socialists, in particular, regarded nationalism as a by-product of capitalist competition for markets and a weapon which capitalists used to divert the working class from its true international interests. Marx and Engels had no patience with the claims of the small nationalities inhabiting the great European empires, whose destiny it was, they believed, to assimilate and vanish. For liberals, nationalism was doomed by the operations of an integrating world market; for socialists, by the brotherhood of the international proletariat.
About the Author
Richard Pipes is professor of history emeritus at Harvard and the author most recently of Russian Conservatism and Its Critics (Yale).