Magazine September 1, 2021, Issue

At History’s End, with Francis Fukuyama

Francis Fukuyama in 2008 (Larry Downing/Reuters)
After the End of History: Conversations with Francis Fukuyama, edited by Mathilde Fasting (Georgetown University Press, 232 pp., $24.95)

In his famous 1989 National Interest article “The End of History?,” Francis Fukuyama argued that capitalist liberal democracy very well may constitute the “end” of “history” in a Hegelian sense — “the end point of man­kind’s ideological evolution.” History’s end state would not be devoid of illiberal, statist, and authoritarian regimes, but capitalist liberal democracy would not be challenged by any serious ideological competitors with potentially universal appeal, as had been the case with communism.

Fukuyama expanded on his argument in book form three years later with the publication of The End of History and the Last Man. There he sought

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This article appears as “At History’s End” in the September 1, 2021, print edition of National Review.

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