In this fifth and final segment of the Uncommon Knowledge interview with Tom Wolfe, I pose a question on the minds of millions of Americans—see, just for instance, the current cover of Newsweek, which shows the back of the Statue of Liberty, as if the viewer were pulling away fom Lady Liberty as fast as he possibly could, under the headline, “The Post-American World: What role will the U.S. play as China and Russia rise?”
ME: Henry Luce famously called the twentieth century “the American century.” Will the twenty-first century represent a second American century?TOM WOLFE: I believe we’re on the edge of about 800 more years of American centuries. The biggest problem is all the people who see a problem. It’s very fashionable to think that the end is near.
Eight hundred more years. At that moment, I confess, I could have leaned over and planted a big wet smacker right in the middle of Tom Wolfe’s forehead, white suit or no.
Tom Wolfe, journalist, author—and patriot.