The large-scale entrance of the United States Government into the field of international cultural relations is a relatively recent phenomenon, dating only from World War II. Much has been said in this brief period about the importance of cultural relations for the resolution of international conflicts and the achievement of American foreign-policy objectives. However, there has been relatively little discussion of cultural relations that has attempted to cut beneath the widely accepted conventions that it is good for people in different countries to know one another personally, and good for the United States if other nations realize that we do indeed have a culture. In particular, one special purpose of cultural relations, and one peculiar and troublesome set of problems which they present, have been given less attention than they merit. These have to do with the role of intellectuals in international affairs, and with some of the special characteristics of the relation between American intellectuals and intellectuals elsewhere.

It would hopelessly simplify the harsh complexity of most international conflicts, and it would ascribe more influence to intellectuals than they have, to say that international conflict has its source in the quarrels of intellectuals. Nevertheless, there is a kind of devious truth in this statement. The influence over international affairs of "the scribbling set," as the Duke of Wellington once called the intellectuals with less than complete affection, is greater than is commonly thought-greater, certainly, than one would suppose from the frequent complaints of intellectuals themselves that people in power are suspicious of them and averse to listening to them.

There are a number of ways in which this influence is exercized. One of the most obvious is the relation of intellectuals to the language of international conflict and accommodation. International affairs are peculiarly susceptible to galloping abstractions-"Communism," "Africa," "Imperialism," "the Free World." Nowhere else do massive stereotypes and personified ideas play a larger role; nowhere do they do more to rigidify disagreement, to give it a quality of necessity and higher nobility, and to turn otherwise manageable conflicts into unmanageable ones. And intellectuals, more than most other groups, have the power to create, dignify, inflate, criticize, moderate or puncture these abstractions. The character of international life is influenced by the language that comes to be used in public to explain what is going on, to justify the positions that are taken, or to negotiate disputes. The quality of this language is something which intellectuals do much to affect.

There are some other even more apparent ways in which intellectuals exercise influence over international affairs. The pivotal audiences abroad to whom United States educational and cultural programs are addressed, for example, are composed of intellectuals.[i] The effect which these programs have on our relations with other countries depends decisively on the reactions of intellectuals to them. This is true even when educational and cultural programs have other audiences in mind. The target for an educational project of the Agency for International Development may be primary- or secondary-school students, but without the understanding and coöperation of local teachers, school administrators and officials of education ministries, it is not likely to succeed. Some of the State Department's cultural presentations-for example, a jazz band or a touring movie star-may be aimed at a mass audience, but their reception depends to a considerable extent on the amount and kind of attention they receive from editors, critics and broadcasters. Of all United States agencies conducting large educational programs abroad, probably only the Peace Corps can achieve its purposes without major reliance on the good will of foreign intellectuals; and even its programs can be compromised by these groups if they wish to do so.

These aspects of the influence of intellectuals are reflections of a deeper role that intellectuals play in contemporary societies. As a consequence of the growing practical importance of such fields as law, medicine, science, economics, education and journalism, and, to a larger extent, as a consequence of the secularization of society, an outstanding feature of modern history has been the rise of intellectuals to positions of pivotal importance in society. Indeed, as the role played by intellectuals in most of the emerging nations illustrates, this trend is an essential part of what we mean by the "modernization" of a society. And the role of intellectuals has not been simply that of giving practical counsel or supplying technical know-how. It has been that of serving as a "censor- class" for the community. Located in the universities, the press, the theatre and the arts, the intellectuals in almost all societies are a major group from whom members of the educated and semi-educated publics draw their opinions about the character and moral quality of their society.

The attitudes which the individual members of a society hold toward its reigning institutions do not depend simply on their judgment of the efficiency of these institutions. Such attitudes depend also on whether individuals find these institutions congruent with their general Weltanschauung, and can justify them in a language which they regard as appropriate for discussing such matters. Thus, relatively few Americans or foreigners find fault with American institutions on the ground of their inefficiency. The more usual denunciation is that America is "materialistic." In other words, the stability and strength of social and political institutions depend not only on their practical performance but on their symbolic legitimacy. And to a considerable extent, the secular intellectuals of modern nations have supplanted the clergy as the principal suppliers and endorsers of the symbols of legitimacy. "Capitalism," "socialism," "freedom," "justice," "exploitation," "alienation," etc., with the special reverberations they now carry, are intellectuals' terms.

The significance of this for foreign policy is as great as it is for domestic affairs. Over the long run, a major nation's foreign policy is unlikely to succeed, or will, at any rate, become more costly and more completely dependent on violence and the threat of violence, if it loses the understanding and sympathy of intellectuals in other countries and at home. It is against this background that we may turn to consider certain curious features of the relation between American and foreign intellectuals. For the attitudes of intellectual groups abroad are peculiarly relevant to an understanding of the nature and difficulties of the tasks that are somewhat loosely and happily lumped together under the heading of "cultural relations."


It is tempting, and only too common, when describing the attitudes of foreign intellectuals, to label them with the generic term, "anti- American." But this is almost certainly misleading. The attitudes to which this label is applied are not infrequently accompanied by great courtesy and friendship toward individual Americans, by avid interest in American intellectual, literary and artistic achievements, and even by basic sympathy with the long-range objectives of American foreign policy. "Anti- Americanism," so-called, is in fact a complex and elusive phenomenon composed of many separate strands, a good number of which have little to do intrinsically with American culture as such. Instead of concentrating on anti-Americanism, which begs many questions, it is preferable to try to unravel these strands and to see what they imply with regard to the problem of communication between articulate representatives of American and foreign cultures.

Obviously, there are grave dangers of oversimplification in any attempt to characterize the intellectuals of the United States or of other countries in a few broad strokes. The ethnic, social and political differences between the intellectuals of different countries are frequently very great, and, within individual countries, intellectual groups are commonly divided into sub-groups and factions that are in sharp disagreement with one another. So far as the remarks that are about to be made are concerned, it should be borne in mind that they describe, on the whole, the attitudes of the most vocal and visible members of intellectual groups, and that they apply with least force to the English-speaking and Scandinavian countries, and probably with greatest force to the intellectuals of the emerging countries. It should also be stressed that we are discussing differences between American intellectuals and others that are differences in degree, and not absolute, categorical contrasts. Within the framework of such reservations, however, a number of generalizations may be hazarded.

To begin with, the basic intellectual perspective of the dominant groups in the intellectual circles of most foreign countries tends to be different from that which prevails among most leading representatives of American scholarship and intellectual life. Setting specialists in the physical sciences aside, the education and mental formation of most foreign intellectuals is literary in character, and their approach to social issues is marked by a high degree of reliance on broad and abstract theories and ideals. In contrast, American scholars, particularly those in the social sciences, tend to be more empirical, more concerned with refined problems of methodology, and more anti-ideological. Where foreign intellectuals enjoy using comprehensive intellectual schemes, often carrying heavy philosophical and metaphysical overtones, to explain and interpret specific trends, American scholars and social observers tend to be skeptical, perhaps overly skeptical, of broad generalizations and value-judgments.

This difference in basic intellectual outlook leads to other differences, sometimes more apparent than real, but important none the less because they are felt to be real. Thus, to a considerable extent, intellectuals abroad are likely to be leftist in their political sentiments. In contrast, American scholars and intellectuals, although in fact they may be anything but conservative, are nevertheless frequently perceived by their foreign colleagues as adherents of the status quo. The reason has less to do with their explicit political sentiments than with their intellectual style. By and large, they tend to be "problem-oriented." That is to say, they generally shun sweeping verdicts on the state of society, and prefer, by training and inclination, to break down large issues into their smaller parts, formulating these as limited problems which manageable programs of inquiry or reform may reasonably be expected to solve. Accordingly, to others with different traditions, American scholars are likely to seem at best mildly reformist or meliorist. Their concern to deal with limited problems one by one suggests that they are merely tinkering with a social system with whose fundamental aspects they are in sympathy. Moreover, this impression which foreign intellectuals have of American intellectual culture is complemented and complicated by another impression which they are also likely to have. Leftist though they may be in their political sentiments, many foreign intellectuals also tend to be aristocratic in their educational, esthetic and cultural ideals. Although American intellectuals may often share the foreigner's disdain for "leveling- downwards" and "mass culture," they are less often as stringent and uncompromising in their declarations of principle. They are likely to be more tolerant of the theory and practice of American mass education. They are less prone to see inherent conflicts between "democracy" and "excellence," or "industrial society" and "individual freedom." And while they may recognize a conflict between "the sciences" and "the humanities," they do not so often draw the absolute line between these two spheres that intellectuals in other parts of the world do. In sum, although an antagonism between "the two cultures" exists in the United States, it is probably less pronounced in this country than in any other. In consequence, if American intellectuals strike others as too conservative from one point of view, they often seem too modernist, too supinely afloat on the wave of the future, from another point of view.[ii]

The issue is practical, indeed economic and political, as well as moral and theoretical. In the United States itself, the introduction of new intellectual materials that require new intellectual skills if they are to be mastered, and particularly the introduction of methods of social inquiry marked by indifference to traditional ideological positions, have encountered resistance on many occasions and in many places. This resistance is likely to be all the greater when, in a given country, such materials and methods appear to be an import from abroad. A revision of secondary-school curricula, the return of students trained in the United States in American methods of empirical social inquiry, the introduction by visiting American scholars of the American style in sociology and political science, can all imply or seem to imply the upsetting of established learning in a host country. Without intending to do so, American programs of educational and cultural exchange can thus threaten the established system of status and prestige in academic and intellectual circles abroad.

To this must be added other sources of potential misunderstanding. The labels that American and foreign intellectuals use to discuss social systems are different. Discussions by most foreign intellectuals still turn on words like "socialism" and "capitalism," the former being almost invariably a eulogistic term, the latter almost invariably pejorative. It is difficult for foreign intellectuals to join issue with intellectuals like those from the United States, who seem so often to be indifferent to the distinction intended by these words, and who tend to suggest, indeed, that the words are misleading.

There are allied difficulties in connection with attitudes toward religion. In many countries, the intellectuals, particularly the younger ones, are predominantly not religious or are militantly anti-religious. At the very least, they are not usually Protestant Christians, and are therefore likely to be puzzled or put off by the special religious rhetoric that characterizes many American political statements. And even if American scholars and intellectuals do not echo this rhetoric, they may still puzzle their foreign counterparts. For there is little in the experience of the latter to prepare them to understand attitudes toward religion-ranging from ingenious reconstructions of traditional religious thought through cheerful tolerance of all religion to indifference to the question-which are likely to characterize intellectuals who have grown up in a society where religious pluralism is well established.

Such differences in outlook are sharpened by differences in the history and in the social position and function of intellectual groups in the United States and other countries. Students, scholars, writers and artists abroad tend to be discriminable and visible groups in their society. Often they have relatively little active contact with other social groups. Indeed, they often perceive themselves, and are perceived, as a separate social class, with a distinct outlook and a special social mission. They are the vanguard of the forces of enlightenment, the spokesmen for modernization or freedom or the emerging national culture, the keepers of the national conscience. American intellectuals, in comparison, have less ambitious conceptions of their role, and less consciousness of themselves as a class, just as American businessmen, workers and government functionaries also tend to have less class-consciousness.

This difference between American intellectuals and intellectuals abroad runs parallel to another. By and large, foreign intellectuals think of themselves as performing their special functions precisely when they keep their distance from the centers of power governing their society. They are prepared to identify themselves with the powers-that-be only when, in turn, they can identify these powers-that-be with themselves-only when they believe, that is to say, that government, the economy and the social structure are being systematically rebuilt in accordance with the principles which they hold. From such a point of view, it is one thing to take and use power for "revolutionary" purposes; it is quite another thing to serve those who have power, and who use it merely to keep things going or to patch things up. Accordingly, for many foreign intellectuals, to advise government, to counsel industry, to bring technical expertise to bear on specific social problems, seems to be equivalent to the renunciation of one's status as an intellectual. American scholars, in contrast, are less inclined to regard a close identification with power as inherently contaminating. They find it easier to think of practical service to government, industry or the community in neutral, non-political terms.

It is worth saying again that we are speaking here only of differences in degree. There are a number of American scholars and intellectuals who regard any form of close association with government or industry as an abandonment of their intellectual independence. And there are many scholars and intellectuals not only in Western Europe, but in Asia, Africa and Latin America, who have undertaken practical tasks of leadership and counseling, and have moved back and forth between the universities, the professions and government service. But to some extent this reflects the tempo of development and the shortage of manpower in the emerging countries; and to some extent it reflects the congruence of the official revolutionary ideologies of these countries with the principles of the scholars and intellectuals concerned. Broadly speaking, even though the difference between American and foreign intellectuals may be a matter of degree, it remains a significant difference. Fewer American scholars and students think of themselves as generalized intellectuals; they think of their social role simply as that of men possessing special knowledge, like doctors or engineers. More foreign scholars and students are self- consciously intellectuals, and think of their social role as that of secular priests-general guides, critics and judges of their society.

Behind these different attitudes towards identification with power there are often, of course, objective differences in the social situation and political realities of different countries. In some countries in Latin America, for example, the people who hold power in government or the economy are deeply hostile both to intellectuals and to social reform. It is not a mistake or a dogmatic ideological illusion for an intellectual in such circumstances to view an alliance with power as a defection from principle. But behind such attitudes toward identification with power there are also certain pervasive attitudes towards power itself. The notion that political practice inescapably involves moral compromise goes back to Plato, pervades Western philosophy and Western common sense, and has become part of the heritage of intellectuals in most countries in the world. In the West, it is reinforced by traditional suspicions of worldly pomp and power inherited from Prophetic and Christian teachings. In many other civilizations, it is reinforced by religious and philosophical ideas that condemn the material world as the scene of illusion and temptation. And just as in the West, people may hold these views and yet proclaim themselves philosophical materialists. The obvious fact should perhaps also be mentioned that the objective experience of most human beings in relation to the wielders of political power has been a bitter one. This is easily forgotten by many Americans, including intellectuals, but it separates American history from the history of most other nations in the world.

In any case, whatever the sources of such views, they are widespread, and they have considerable influence in many parts of the world on intellectual attitudes toward power, and, indeed, toward the very nature of politics, government and social authority. And given such inherited attitudes toward power and identification with it, it should not be surprising that intellectual groups abroad-or, at any rate, some of the most articulate and influential elements among them-should be negatively predisposed toward American society and American policy. To be critical of power almost automatically entails that one be critical of the country that, above all others, possesses and epitomizes worldly success, wealth and influence. Needless to say, actual American deeds and pronouncements also have much to do with the attitudes toward the United States of intellectuals abroad. But it is naïve to imagine, so long as the United States occupies the position in the world that it does, and so long as the intellectuals of most other societies retain their traditional cast of mind with regard to their social mission and their relation to power, that American policy will not have to contend with an undertow of suspicion against it on the part of intellectuals in other countries.

Finally, major historical trends affect and complicate the relationship of American culture to other cultures. In the emerging societies, intellectuals are usually deeply committed to the modernization of their society, and resent any implication that they are less "progressive" in their thinking than their fellow intellectuals in the West. In practical terms, this means that they are eager to show themselves to be, in significant respects, westernized. At the same time, they cannot help but associate Western culture with a memory of injustice and of the subordination of their own native culture. In consequence, they very often have equivocal feelings toward Western culture, including its American version. This is one reason for the appeal of Marxism, a philosophy which, at one and the same time, offers both a convenient synthesis of Western tradition and a radical critique of that tradition. Marxism allows the intellectual of non-Western societies to feel that he is taking advantage of Western thought without being taken in by it. In contrast, any United States program of educational or cultural exchange with a developing country, much as it may be to the interest of both sides, almost inevitably raises the spectre of "cultural imperialism."

In the emerging nations, Americans may hear their country accused of playing a devious and self-interested game. In the more developed nations, they may hear American policy condemned for its innocence and optimism. Nevertheless, while the difficulties that appear in relations with the intellectuals of the developed countries are not quite the same as those that affect relations with the underdeveloped countries, they are in certain respects analogous. Feelings of national pride, American and foreign, play a role in the process of cultural communication between the United States and other economically advanced societies, and the events of the last quarter-century have exacerbated these feelings. In Japan it cannot help but be difficult for intellectuals to separate their response to American culture from their memory of defeat, occupation and tutelage by the Americans. In Western Europe the American presence is a standing reminder of a war in which everybody in the West but the Americans suffered a major loss of status. Under the circumstances, an emphasis on America's unfitness for leadership-on the incongruence between America's economic and military power and her cultural immaturity-is perhaps to be expected.

Moreover, underneath these feelings there is a deeper one, akin to the feelings of those in the emerging countries who fear "cultural imperialism." It is anger at the destruction of hereditary standards and amenities by the advance of technology and the mass market. The jukebox, the snack bar, the traffic jam, the supermarket, and the patterns of aspiration and emulation they symbolize, have become universal phenomena in developed nations. They suggest the corning of an homogenized international civilization which people who like their own native idiosyncrasies are bound to resent and resist. When they do so, there is a natural tendency for them to resent and resist American culture. For these phenomena have been carried to their most extreme form in the United States, and are associated with a process known around the world as "Americanization."

The association is in fact largely adventitious. The United States is undoubtedly the most conspicuous example of a country that has plunged heavily into the process variously known as "modernization" or "industrialization." But other countries have now also plunged heavily into this process, and their changing style of life reflects the changed opportunities and aspirations of their own populations rather than American pressure or propaganda. As has often been observed, there are no laws forcing people elsewhere to queue up to see Hollywood movies, to leave domestic service for work in factories, to import American slang into their language, or to strive to obtain the products of mass-production, American style. They seem to have made such choices of their own free will. Nevertheless, even though the United States may simply be a convenient scapegoat on whom these revolutionary changes can be blamed, the fact remains that there are special overtones in the relationship of foreign intellectuals to American culture. For American culture, or what is thought to be American culture, is a lively and painful domestic issue in their own societies-not a piece of exotica, or simply another country's way of life, but a living example and option for their own country in which they must acquiesce or against which they must struggle.


Is the moral of this tale that there are insurmountable obstacles in the path of good cultural relations between the United States and other nations? Under any circumstances, communication between members of different cultures is a difficult and delicate affair. This question can be answered only if we are clear about what we mean by "good cultural relations" and what the functions of such relations are. If we think that it is a function of such relations to effect a grand international ideological merger, the problems that have been mentioned are very probably insuperable. And if we think that it is an object of cultural relations to "sell" a point of view, we are probably asking for what is equally impossible, and for what destroys the power of exchange programs to do what they are peculiarly capable of doing. On the other hand, the problems that have been mentioned help us to focus more precisely on some of the central and proper functions of such programs. And when these functions are fixed clearly in mind, these problems are not necessarily barriers to communication. On the contrary, they are potential ties, if approached with realistic objectives in mind, between articulate Americans and the articulate citizens of other countries.

The overhanging problem of using technological progress to enhance rather than destroy humane values and the aesthetic quality of life is only one among many examples that might be given. With regard to this problem, Americans are certainly in no position to give instruction to others; but neither are others in a position to point the finger of scorn at us. It is a problem for all industrial civilizations, and for all societies moving toward industrialization, and it invites not the exchange of invidious comparisons but joint concern and inquiry. A sense of community can be developed not only by the announcement of common values but by the discovery of problems that are shared. And it is against this background that we can understand why the emergence of habits of disciplined and responsive discourse between the intellectuals of different nations can have much to do with the chances for the rational resolution of international conflicts.

What, then, are the functions of programs for improving and intensifying the process of communication between intellectuals of different countries? There are many, but among them is the tempering and subverting of stereotypes, and the creation of opportunities for discourse that will encourage intellectuals in different countries to speak to each other rather than past each other. For stereotypes, and the habit of talking about different things at different levels of discourse, block the process of locating and defining the problems around which a sense of intellectual community might be developed.

Needless to say, personal and continuing contact between intellectuals from different nations may not lead to agreement among them or even to sympathy. But the evidence is considerable that such contact tends to undermine the organized fantasies that grow up, and that intellectuals themselves often nurture, when close and personal contacts are missing. Cultural exchange encourages the qualifying of rigid generalizations and the tempering of stereotypes about people in other nations, and it exercises a countervailing pressure against both intellectual and political inertia. As the relations between the United States and the Soviet Union over the last decade illustrate, there is a notable tendency in international affairs to persist in analyses and policies that do not fit new facts or fit them only inexactly. Vested interests, intellectual and practical, which have piled up around the old analyses, conspire to produce this result. A vigorous program to facilitate communication, particularly personal communication, between the intellectuals of different countries is a way of preventing the hardening of the arteries of international communication in general. It can discipline international discourse in the simple sense that it can help bring it closer to the complex and changing facts.

More than this, cultural exchange, if it is conducted with such a purpose in mind, can help at once to limit and enlarge the process of international intellectual communication. On one side, it can lead to the discovery and localization of questions that provide promising themes for joint discussion and study outside a context of political negotiation or competing national interests. City planning, the relation of the mass media to education or to inherited cultural traditions, the advantages and the limits of new methods of social inquiry, are only a few examples. This localization of issues by intellectuals can help in the gradual development of a vocabulary for international communication that avoids the great conflicts of ideologies, and that paves the way for more effective forms of international communication.

But the process of international communication among intellectuals also needs to be enlarged. The character and moral significance of the radical changes taking place in twentieth-century civilizations are any civilized man's concern. Given a reasonable effort on the part of intellectuals to listen to each other and to try to make sense to each other, direct intellectual confrontations may contribute to a kind of international discourse that exists now only fitfully and precariously. If there is a point in avoiding angry forms of high ideological recrimination, there is no point in avoiding the discussion of high intellectual themes. It is particularly important for American intellectuals, with their sophisticated methodologies, their love of concrete problems and their suspicion of broad abstractions, to remember this. What the much used and much abused word "democracy" means, what the relation is between individual freedom and the emergence of massive forms of social organization, what the function of intellect itself is in a technical and specialized society-these are questions with roots that go far back in the history of intellectual discussion. It is clear that even men of thorough reasonableness and good will will not come to the same conclusions about them. But it is equally clear that if men do not talk to each other about such questions at all, they are not likely to understand each other very well. And this causes trouble when they turn to the more practical matters on which international accommodation depends.

[i] It would take us far afield to define the phrase "the intellectuals" with the thoroughness it deserves. Briefly, however, it refers to a social category. As I am using it here, it says nothing about the inner capacities (or incapacities) of mind of the people who belong to this category. First of all, an intellectual is simply a man whose principal occupation involves dealing with words or symbols at a fairly high level of complexity. He is, in this broad sense, a "scribbler." (Of course, the idea of what is "complex" is a relative matter. It depends on the surrounding educational and cultural context. In countries where educational levels are low, the notions of "complexity" are naturally more relaxed. Merely being a university student, or even a high-school graduate, can be enough to qualify an individual as an intellectual-a significant factor that affects the political influence of students in countries marked by low literacy.) Secondly, an intellectual is a man who, in addition to his specialized knowledge or with the help of such knowledge, concerns himself with issues of general public importance, and addresses himself to people outside his own professional field. Specialized knowledge in itself is not enough to make a man an intellectual. The late Norbert Wiener, for example, was an intellectual, in this meaning of the term, not because he made technical contributions to cybernetics but because he also discussed "the human use of human beings." Finally, it should be noted that to be an intellectual is not entirely a matter of self-election. In every society, there are associations, clubs, cliques, cafés and periodicals that are identified as "intellectual." Admission to them may be a wholly informal affair, but the fact that an individual has been admitted to them is part of what is meant by calling him an "intellectual." In this sense, intellectuals compose a reasonably definite social category, even though, just as in the case of businessmen, doctors or criminals, there are a fairly large number of borderline cases that cannot be classified one way or the other.

[ii] Although we are not discussing established facts about American intellectuals, but only the views which intellectuals elsewhere tend to hold of them, some apparently important exceptions to these generalizations may nevertheless come to mind. Men like Robert Oppenheimer or Linus Pauling are obviously not perceived either as conservatives or as apologists for technocracy by intellectuals abroad. Again, the activities of many American professors with regard to civil rights or Viet Nam would seem to fall into the pattern of political activity characteristic of the most visible and vocal intellectual circles abroad. And there are, of course, well-known intellectual journals of opinion in the United States, usually literary in their focus, whose tone of alienation from contemporary American culture resembles the tone of similar journals abroad. Nevertheless, while these examples indicate that the contrast we are drawing must be carefully shaded, they also underscore its basic truth. Dr. Pauling, for example, has been a radical critic of American military policy, and Dr. Oppenheimer has gained fame not only as a physicist but as a social philosopher concerned about the relation of science to humanistic civilization. Yet neither can be identified as the spokesman of a general political position that can be given systematic formulation. Again, there is no evidence that the great majority of professors who have taken part in Viet Nam demonstrations are critics of the American political or social system in general, or even that they are opposed to the major aspects of American foreign policy such as NATO or foreign aid. And when we turn to literary journals of opinion, we find in them not only ideology, but also a high content of anti-ideology. To many foreign intellectuals, all this is likely to suggest that American intellectuals are strangely indifferent, or perhaps even hostile, to questions of first principles.

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