People have fond memories of the stunning ‘Civilisation’ television series presented by Kenneth – later Lord – Clark, as long ago as 1969.
In that series, Clark wanted to present Western Civilisation from classical times through its art and architecture.
He did so with outstanding success.
Clark remarked that while he found it difficult to nail down what civilisation was, he knew it when he saw it.
Urbane, gentlemanly, deeply learned and cultured, he was instantly recognisable as embodying the best of Western Civilisation in himself.
In contrast, a new series, ‘Civilisations’, to be aired by the BBC in the near future, will have three presenters.
Not one of them though comes anywhere near the stature of Clark.
They embody nothing so much as the deep decline of the West thanks to Left Liberalism and the institutional Political Correctness of the Cultural Marxist mouthpiece, the BBC.
While Clark chose himself for his series (because his authority and scholarship demanded it), it’s clear that the first determining factor in the choice of the three presenters for the new series was not any idea of their erudition and authority but what they are not (native white British and male):
Mary Beard – Beard is a pretty much run-of-the-mill academic who had a TV series quite recently about ancient Rome.
Her real qualifications for her TV roles though are first, that she is female and second that she is fanatically pro-European.
Simon Schama is favoured by the BBC as a historian for obvious reasons: He is a left leaning ethnic.
We learn from Wikipedia – where he is described as ‘English’ – that his mother, née Steinberg, hailed from Lithuania, while his father, Arthur Schama, came from Smyrna (now Izmir) in Turkey.
Schama is remembered most recently for his fawning BBC interview of his co-ethnic, the late Stalin – admiring, mass murder excusing historian Eric Hobsbawm.
Schama exploded hysterically and rather comically in a Question Time programme when he insulted the Spectator writer, Rod Liddle.
Schama described Liddle as a ‘hack’ and sneered at him revealingly as ‘suburban’ – Liddle had dared to question the influx of so-called ‘refugees’.
The rootless cosmopolitan Schama, though once a resident of Southend in Essex, now lives in a well-heeled town in the USA favoured by his co-ethnics.
David Olusoga. Who is he? One might well ask.
His name is a giveaway, though.
He is certainly well qualified for his new role as he is an ethnic Nigerian and writes for the Guardian, that comfortable billet for anyone and anything anti-white, anti-British and anti-West.
Although no doubt steeped in the pretentious but opaque drivellings of leftist ideologues, he is an intellectual lightweight, even in comparison with the other two mediocre-at-best and certainly biased presenters.
Though his knowledge of all and any Civilisations can be seriously questioned, there is no questioning his dislike of and resentment for Britain and the British who are, inevitably in his terms, ‘racist’.
If Olusogu wants to know what racism really is, he should try revisiting Nigeria where inter – ethnic violence is commonplace and where Christians are being murdered, raped and enslaved wholesale by Muslim rebels.
As already mentioned, Clark’s series focused on Western Civilisation.
Quite rightly, since we live in it and since it is by any standard without question the most glitteringly successful in history, eclipsing all others to the point where its worldwide influence and triumphs are mistaken by the lazy, the bigoted and the ignorant as merely inevitable or accidental ‘modernity’.
Cultural Marxists though don’t believe in standards. Apparently, the more or less Stone Age daubs and practices of Australian aborigines, for example, are to be spoken of in the same breath as the Sistine Chapel while the boomerang is on a par with the Moon landings. (If one believes that, one is likely to believe anything.)
So the three presenters of the new series will cover many Civilisations and the mere idea of ‘Civilisation’ will be questioned.
Will the sub-Saharan Olusoga dilate on the ‘civilisations’ of sub-Sahara Africa?
It is hard to see how much can be made of these.
After all, sub-Saharan Africans had no art which approached the level of the Lascaux caves (The Benin bronzes were likely the product of visiting craftsmen from across the Sahara since they had no precedents and no successors – John R Baker FRS, 1974 pp 414,415).
They had no musical instruments beyond the most basic, percussion type.
They never invented an alphabet and so had no literature or intellectual learning of any kind, including any kind of developed religion or theology beyond a primitive animism.
They never managed to invent the wheel… and so on.
The great Civilisations of the East – the Chinese, Japanese and the Hindus and the historical Civilisations of the Middle East, Meso and South America and so forth demand attention and respect to a greater or lesser degree for their attainments.
All the same, the entire corpus of Japanese art is matched and arguably excelled by just one period of Netherland art alone.
The same goes for Chinese art, for all the excellencies of its marvellous ceramics and other productions. Like them, the Art and Civilisation of the Hindus progressed little over many centuries… and so it goes.
What is really to be pushed (as ever) is Islamic civilisation. Here a long-running mistake is being made.
What relatively minor achievements occurred under Islam will be hyped up out of all recognition, as will what the West owes to it.
But even these did not occur because of that religion in the way that Christianity inspired the people of the West.
They occurred in spite of it. Because according to Islam, everything we need to know is to be found in the Qur’an.
There is one exception, however. Islamic conquests brought together the learning of the conquered, chiefly that of the Christian Greeks.
All that Islam added to the mix was Jihad.
Once Islam ran out of further conquests and reasserted itself after the relaxation encouraged by its huge territorial expansion, its so-called Golden Age came to a grinding halt.
Islamic areas have made no advances in any direction in the seven centuries since.
The American sociologist Charles Murray, best known for his co-authorship of the seminal ‘The Bell Curve’, made an empirical, statistical study of the not unrelated history of human achievements.
His 2003 book ‘Human Accomplishment: The Pursuit of Excellence in the Arts and Sciences, 800 B.C. to 1950 was the result.
In it, Murray shows that of the 4002 world-significant figures in the arts and sciences he identifies in the period, just 568 or 14% are not Western and just 82 or 2% can be identified as living under Islam.
Murray points out that whether measured in terms of people or events, 97% of accomplishment in the scientific inventories occurred in Europe and North America.
But never mind all that.
To underline its dedication to the destruction of the West, the BBC, identified correctly by Donald Trump as a fake news enemy of the people and excluded with its print arm The Guardian from his press conferences, has just appointed a Muslim as head of its Religious Broadcasting, the second in succession to hold that position.
This Muslim, a woman, will join with the anti-Western ethnic James Purnell who is responsible for the new Civilisations series as head of Education Broadcasting.
The sooner this anti-British, anti-West, Cultural Marxist/Gramsci propaganda mouthpiece is destroyed, the better for the political health of our nation.