Worldview, Existence and Order: An Introduction to the Concept of Civilization
Ever since its inception in the 18th century, the concept of civilization has been employed widely in such diverse fields as social sciences, politics, arts and popular culture. The term has been used to denote a large number of issues and subjects with a long debate on what exactly constitute the criteria of civilization. An equally important debate has been whether there is only one civilization or one should speak of multiple civilizations. This article provides a brief history of the concept of civilization and discusses its various meanings and usages in the Western and Islamic intellectual traditions. A definition of civilization will be made and its relationship with worldview, existence and the idea of order will be discussed from a comparative and interdisciplinary point of view. The article will conclude with a critical assessment of the current state of civilization.
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