After the End of History

Conversations with Francis Fukuyama

Edited by Mathilde Fasting
With Francis Fukuyama

"The book is a horn of plenty. Every page presents a novel idea, a new fact, or an unexpected perspective."
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Intimate access to the mind of Francis Fukuyama and his reflections on world politics, his life and career, and the evolution of his thought

In his 1992 best-selling book The End of History and the Last Man, American political scientist Francis Fukuyama argued that the dominance of liberal democracy marked the end of humanity’s political and ideological development. Thirty years later, with populism on the rise and the number of liberal democracies decreasing worldwide, Fukuyama revisits his classic thesis.

A series of in-depth interviews between Fukuyama and editor Mathilde Fasting, After the End of History offers a wide-ranging analysis of liberal democracy today. Drawing on Fukuyama’s work on identity, biotechnology, and political order, the book provides essential insight into the rise of authoritarianism and the greatest threats faced by democracy in our present world.

Diving into topics like the surprise election of Donald Trump, the destruction of social and political norms, and the rise of China, Fukuyama deftly explains the plight of liberal democracy and explores how we might prevent its further decline. He also covers personal topics, reflects on his life and career, the evolution of his thinking, and some of his most important books.

Insightful and important, After the End of History grants unprecedented access to one of the greatest political minds of our time.

Table of Contents



1. What Has Happened after the End of History?

2. How Have World Politics Changed?

3. How Do Illiberal Attacks Threaten Democracy?

4. Will the US Cease to Be the Beacon of the Liberal Order?

5. Will Orwell’s 1984 Dystopia Come True?

6. Is Fukuyama a Classical European Liberal?

7. What Led Fukuyama to International Politics?

8. What Is the End of History?

9. Why Do We Go to Denmark?

10. How Do We Build Liberal Democracies?

11. How Can We Understand How Societies Work?

12. Is Identity Politics a Question of Thymos?

13. How Do Society and Capitalism Interact?

14. How Does Human Nature Shape Society?

15. Is China a Serious Contender to Liberal Democracy?

16. Are We Experiencing a Clash of Civilizations?

17. How Can We Make Liberal Democracies Thrive?

18. The Future of History




"Students of geopolitics and world history will find Fukuyama’s thoughts both provocative and inspiring."—Kirkus Reviews

"Francis Fukuyama is without doubt one of the most influential political scientists of the post Cold War period. There is hardly anyone who has not heard of his The End of History and the Last Man. In this splendid book of conversations between Mathilde Fasting and Francis Fukuyama, we discover much more about Fukuyama: his background and studies, polymathic interests, relationship to neocons, and his relationship to contemporary economics. It is a book about the person and the scholar, and it will appeal both to biographers and to students of social sciences."—Branko Milanovic, author of Capitalism, Alone

"Fukuyama here shows again that the telos of history is human dignity, not the State’s boot on your face, forever."—Deirdre Nansen McCloskey , author of Why Liberalism Works

"A fascinating set of interviews offering unprecedented insight into the mind of one of the most influential public intellectuals of our time. Topics range from Fukuyama’s early childhood education, to the challenges facing liberal democracies today, including the US-China trade war, the rise of authoritarianism around the world, the power of AI and Facebook, and intensifying identity politics. A great read."—Helena Rosenblatt, professor of history at the Graduate Center, City University of New York

"What a splendid piece of work and service rendered by Mathilde Fasting. After the End of History sets records straight, clarifies, challenges, and provokes. It is sufficient in detail, broad in scope, and focuses the mind on the problem at hand. Liberalism and liberal democracy are in trouble. To manage the problem we need a clear and precise understanding of how we got here. This book helps."—Jeffrey Gedmin, CEO and Editor in Chief, American Purpose, and former President, Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty

"After the End of History offers unmatched insights into Francis Fukuyama’s biography and scholarship and combines them with wide-ranging reflections on liberal democracies and global politics."—Review of Democracy

"Indeed, for anyone who lacks the time to absorbhis numerous books and essays, this volume offers a useful introduction to thecore ideas of one of America’s most consequential (and often misunderstood) contemporary thinkers."—National Review

"...Fukuyama provides an interesting counterpoint to the current pessimism about the future of democracy."—MoneyWeek

"The book is a horn of plenty. Every page presents a novel idea, a new fact, or an unexpected perspective."—Journal of Peace Research

"This extended conversation between Fasting and the famed political scientist Francis Fukuyama takes readers on an engaging intellectual journey in which Fukuyama reflects on the global crises and transformations that have unfolded in the three decades since his famous essay on “the end of history.”"—Foreign Affairs


Supplemental Materials


About the Author

Mathilde Fasting is a project manager and fellow at Civita, one of Norway’s most influential think tanks, where she regularly hosts its weekly podcast. Her published works include Freedom of Choice, The Citizen and the Community, and Torkel Aschehoug and Norwegian Historical Economic Thought: Reconsidering a Forgotten Norwegian Pioneer Economist. Fasting earned her MA in economics from the Norwegian School of Economics, her BA and MA in the history of ideas from the University of Oslo, and her PhD in the economic history of ideas from the University of Erfurt.

Francis Fukuyama is the Olivier Nomellini Senior Fellow at the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies (FSI), the director of the Ford Dorsey Master's in International Policy, and the Mosbacher Director of FSI's Center on Democracy, Development, and the Rule of Law at Stanford University. He has written widely on issues related to democratization and international political economy, including his seminal work The End of History and the Last Man. His most recent book is Identity: The Demand for Dignity and the Politics of Resentment.

176 pp., 6 x 9

ISBN: 978-1-64712-086-3
May 2021

176 pp., 6 x 9

May 2021

176 pp.

ISBN: 978-1-64712-087-0
May 2021

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