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Status anxiety

Is this the beginning of the end of liberal democracy?

Enlightenment values have proved to be thin gruel next to the heady cocktail of anti-western ideology and a brutally literal interpretation of the Quran

21 November 2015

9:00 AM

21 November 2015

9:00 AM

As a graduate student in the Harvard Department of Government in the late 1980s, I became slightly jaded about the number of visiting academics who warned about the imminent demise of the West. The thrust of their arguments was nearly always the same. The secular liberal values we cherish, such as the separation of church and state and freedom of speech, won’t survive in the face of growing religious animosity unless they’re rooted in something more intellectually and spiritually compelling than capitalist individualism.

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Toby Young is associate editor of The Spectator.

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