America: Darkness Before the Crack of Dawn?

Jul 2, 2020

What kind of institutional change does the United States need and can that change be achieved without revolution? Castañeda talks about some of the ideas from his latest book, “America Through Foreign Eyes” and explains why he thinks the United States is heading in exactly the right direction.

Jorge Castañeda was Foreign Minister of Mexico from 2000 to 2003. He is a renowned public intellectual, political scientist, and prolific writer, with an interest in Mexican and Latin American politics, comparative politics and US-Mexican and U.S.-Latin American relations.

Born in Mexico City in 1953, Dr. Castañeda received a B. A. from Princeton University and a B. A. from Universite de Paris-I (Pantheon-Sorbonne), an M. A. from the École Pratique de Hautes Etudes, and his Ph. D. in Economic History from the University of Paris-I.

He taught at Mexico’s National Autonomous University (UNAM) from 1978 through 2004, at Princeton University, and the University of California, Berkeley and (since 1997) at NYU. Jorge Castañeda was a Senior Associate at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace (1985-87) and was a John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation Research and Writing Grant Recipient (1989-1991).

Jorge Castañeda has more than 15 books published in the United States and elsewhere. He is a regular columnist for Revista Nexos, the Spanish daily El País and The New York Times. In 1997, he was appointed Global Distinguished Professor of Political Science and Latin American Studies at New York University. He is an Emeritus Member of Human Rights Watch. In April 2008, Castañeda was elected Foreign Honorary Member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and International Member of the American Philosophical Society.


Maybe this mess—a resurgent pandemic, collapsing economy, screaming politicians, and deep racial inequalities laid bare—is exactly what the United States needs. Maybe the outcome will be a more normal country, instead of one that thinks it is exceptional. That might be better for Americans as well as for the rest of the world, argues Jorge Castañeda, a Mexican educator, diplomat, author and former Foreign Minister in Tällberg’s latest, “New Thinking for a New World” conversation with Alan Stoga.  In this episode, Castañeda talks about some of the ideas from his latest book, “America Through Foreign Eyes” and explains why he thinks the United States is heading in exactly the right direction.

Let us know what do YOU think by leaving a comment below.

Listen to the episode here or find us on a podcast platform of your choice, (ItunesSpotifyAcastStitcherLibsyn, etc).

1 Comment

  1. Dr. Jacques Drolet

    #1: It is an opportunity, yes, and not only for America by the way.
    #2: It is only an opportunity if we have what it takes to feel, think, and behave differently. We generally do not.
    #3 We can acquire it. There are training to learn to embrace diversity, change, shock, and chaos in schools and at work. And yes, the paradigm shift can occur within a day. Then each can develop further at their own pace.
    #4 Will we give ourselves the tools to manage a humane globalization?
    #5 That is the second most important question of our time.
    #6 The first one is : what do we value as a society? and once answered that question, we need to walk the talk. This means courage, creativity, patience, and strength, not pretense and violence. For these attributes to lead the way (courage, creativity, patience, and strength, we need #3, globally.. in schools and at work.

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