How Has the West Viewed Its Ancient Past?
Western history can be divided into three main eras of time. The first era was that of classical antiquity. This lasted for over two thousand years until the fall of the Western Roman Empire. This period witnessed the rise of many great poets and philosophers including Shakespeare and Columbus.
During the medieval period, western civilization experienced a period of internal disorder and expansion. Its heyday was during the middle ages of the European era. It is related to medieval Europe and to the Roman Empire, which emerged from the Crisis Period, which ended in the fifth century, and to medieval Greece, which became the most powerful state in the Mediterranean world at that time.
During the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, another form of development took place in the wake of the decline of the Roman and medieval western civilizations. A new form of civilization emerged in the wake of this development, which is known as the seventeenth century western civilization. The rise of this new civilization was characterized by the appearance of the European Renaissance and by the elevation of the status of the Christian Church.
In the nineteenth and twentieth century, there was yet another phase of development in the west. This period was the dawn of modernism. This was accompanied by the flowering of the arts, sciences and technology. With the advent of modernism, a sense of separation arose between religion and politics, between culture and national identity and between western society and the ancient societies of the east.
The 20th century saw yet another major change in the western world. The rise of a great nation, the Soviet Union, changed the course of the World War II. This nation, whose ideology was primarily associated with socialism, attacked the American and European societies, destroying them utterly. The Soviet Union, which had been an extremely poor country before the World War II, began to industrialize after that conflict. Today, the Soviet Union is one of the largest and most productive nations of the world, although it is still plagued by problems of economic sclerosis. The collapse of the economy of the Soviet Union was one of the biggest shocks to the world, which has led to the globalization phenomenon.
Finally, we come to the twenty-first century. The bipolar political system of the former Soviet Union and the emerging democratic states of the world have shaken the foundations of the old order. The old model has been greatly devalued, while the values of freedom, independence and control of the people are gaining new grounds in the modern world. The image of the emperor Constantine has been deeply damaged, while the image of Christendom has greatly enhanced.