The End of History and the Last Man | Study Guide

Francis Fukuyama

Download a PDF to print or study offline.

Study Guide
Cite This Study Guide

How to Cite This Study Guide

quotation mark graphic
MLA

Bibliography

Course Hero. "The End of History and the Last Man Study Guide." Course Hero. 5 Apr. 2019. Web. 10 Aug. 2020. <https://www.coursehero.com/lit/The-End-of-History-and-the-Last-Man/>.

In text

(Course Hero)

APA

Bibliography

Course Hero. (2019, April 5). The End of History and the Last Man Study Guide. In Course Hero. Retrieved August 10, 2020, from https://www.coursehero.com/lit/The-End-of-History-and-the-Last-Man/

In text

(Course Hero, 2019)

Chicago

Bibliography

Course Hero. "The End of History and the Last Man Study Guide." April 5, 2019. Accessed August 10, 2020. https://www.coursehero.com/lit/The-End-of-History-and-the-Last-Man/.

Footnote

Course Hero, "The End of History and the Last Man Study Guide," April 5, 2019, accessed August 10, 2020, https://www.coursehero.com/lit/The-End-of-History-and-the-Last-Man/.

The End of History and the Last Man | Part 5, Chapter 31 : The Last Man (Immense Wars of the Spirit) | Summary

Share
Share

Summary

Fukuyama finishes by wondering if the inhabitants of the "end of History" will be satisfied by the world they now inhabit. He wonders in particular whether the megalothymic will be satisfied by the "metaphorical wars" of business deals and other non-violent competition. He sketches out historical examples, such as the student protests in France in 1968, as convulsions of bored young middle-class people seeking to inject dynamism and struggle into their lives. Likewise, he ascribes the mass slaughter of World War I as having resulted from the too-long peace of the 19th century. Fukuyama ultimately judges that the end of History is a good thing, and he has no desire to return to the world of megalothymic outbursts and their mass slaughters. Nor does he think they are likely to erupt in the contemporary United States anytime soon. He closes the book by suggesting his thesis will be vindicated by future events. The final sentence points to a potential next step in history that involves the conquest of space.

Analysis

Fukuyama sums up his argument by looking backwards at the sweep of history. He raises once more the prospect that he is wrong, that humanity will slide back into old habits. He does not think it is likely, however. The metaphor of the long road is an apt one for a notion of human progress. There is a definite destination, but it is not always one the travelers can see or even imagine. Getting off the road and going another direction might end up taking humanity back to where it needs to be, or it might end in disaster. But whatever the choice of individual travelers, the road remains. Fukuyama's final sentence suggests the future of humanity may in fact lie in a spaceship rather than a road-going vehicle.

Cite This Study Guide

information icon Have study documents to share about The End of History and the Last Man? Upload them to earn free Course Hero access!

Stuck? We have tutors online 24/7 who can help you get unstuck.
A+ icon
Ask Expert Tutors You can ask You can ask You can ask (will expire )
Answers in as fast as 15 minutes