Contestations of liberal values, norms, and principles; financial and economic stumbling; increasing populism, nationalism, and tribalism; global power shifts—lately all these phenomena have been turned into crisis narratives. This chapter explains how the present volume problematizes these current narratives of crisis from various thematic, theoretical, methodological, and geographical perspectives. These crisis narratives are then aggregated into two groups, which comprise the main themes for the book: the Internally Divided West, focusing on identities and liberalism, and the Western-led Liberal International Order, focusing on ordering principles, values, hegemony, and contestations. The chapter emphasizes the multiformity and contingency of the key concepts: liberal and the West, and the experienced and interpreted nature of crisis. Finally, it is proposed that the current sense of crisis is an opportunity to pause and revisit the persistent and intricate question of the relations between the West, world order, and liberal values and norms.
KeywordsLiberal Liberal international order The West Crisis
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