The End of a World

Top-down authority must succumb to grassroots policy as nations evolve

Mookie Spitz
4 min readApr 12, 2024

Teódulo López Meléndez is a Venezuelan author. Based in Caracas, he has written numerous books and countless articles exploring universal themes of identity, communication, and possibility. Here is another sample, translated into English and shared on Medium…

One world ends, without doubt, and another is in the process of being formed. We must turn to the neo-Marxist thinker Robert Fossaert (“The World of the 21st Century”) to clarify that the end of a world is not an Apocalypse. As this author rightly says, “a world means a period in the history of the overall system formed by a set of interacting countries.” After all, this new emerging world is nothing more than an accumulation in the process of modification of all the previous worlds that followed or coexisted with it.

A new world is a complicated network of dimensions, where everything from production techniques to political structures that creak, and new ones that appear — from multiculturalism to the formation of a global economy — originate from the fall of the old paradigm. International agreements can only occur between States early on in the formation of such a new world, which we must actually refer to as a multiplicity of “worlds”.

The citizens of this new world are marked by the old paradigms, what Alvin Ward Gouldner (“The Crisis of Western Sociology”) calls “personal reality”. That is, succumbing to prevailing ideas in the world we have known, in which we have lived. Transitional beings, in contrast, face the challenge of understanding emerging forms with past convictions. To a large extent, we think, the duality of such an emergent phenomena is reproduced in it, since it lives within, and seeks to increase, local inclusiveness, and an anxious search for engagement on a macro level.

Citizens have lived subject to their nationality, to their particular locality, to the State that gave them— at least theoretically — enveloping protection. The existence of others like them in another culture and in another organized world has been supplanted with study or travel, but now they face or will face a true plurality of worlds with a system of networks that will move horizontally and vertically. Here they will necessarily become global citizens, a role within which they must exercise democratic principles within the process of invention.

Self-sufficient worlds like those described by Fossaert (ibid.) at the beginning of his work, ones that are turned inward, barely transformed by distant trade, will vanish. The multiplicity of States will no longer continue in force (for example, in the 20th century, in 1914, before the World War, there were 62; in 1946, there were 74; in 1999, 193 joined the UN; at this moment in time, there are 192). Such an excessive proliferation of States that has contributed so much to the collapse of the old conception of international relations in Latin America is reflected in the microstates of the Caribbean, ones that constitute a discernible contribution to the dysfunction of the OAS. For the rest, we appreciate how the dividing line between internal conflicts and international conflicts has disappeared or is tending to disappear.

The old phrase “the world is wide and foreign” (Ciro Joy) gives way to a world of our own, where we are obliged to influence it. I quote Goldner, an expert in bureaucracy and a good student of Max Weber (Sociology of the Everyday Life in The Idea of ​​Social Structure: Papers in Honor of Robert K. Merton, Current Sociology: Renewal and Criticism, The Dialectic of Ideology and technology), another North American thinker considered neo-Marxist, even though the adjective is controversial and inaccurate, because if anyone questioned current sociology, it was him. And not to forget that he insisted on the resource of “reflexivity”, so necessary for citizens in this world in transition, alongside the need for a deepening of the “self”.

Goldner made “meta” demands from intellectuals in the sense of thinking about their own thinking, and from sociology to constantly criticize itself about its own reason for being. I say this, because if we experience stagnation anywhere, it is in the social sciences, and in political science in particular. Goldner demands a historical understanding of present consciousness. What I believe is that a major part of the current crisis is a crisis of ideas.

Antipolitics, depoliticization, and autistic individualism must be left behind. The new forms of the new world call for disruption. Citizens of a new world must exercise a citizens-policy, a very different relationship from the old paradigm of citizens-authority.

Visit his blog for a compendium of his writing…

Read more translations of Teódulo López Meléndez

And here’s one of my own takes on the “End of the World” theme…



Mookie Spitz

Author and communications strategist. His latest book SUPER SANTA is available on Amazon, with a sci fi adventure set for Valentine's Day 2024.