from bertrand russell's history of western philosophy
, book 2 chapter 7, "the papacy in the dark ages":
our superiority since the renaissance is due partly to science and scientific technique, partly to political institutions slowly built up during the middle ages. there is no reason, in the nature of things, why this superiority should continue. in the present war (world war two), great military strength has been shown by russia, china and japan. all these combine western technique with eastern ideology -- byzantine, confucian or shinto. india, if liberated, will contribute another oriental element. it seems not unlikely that, during the next few centuries, civilization, if it survives, will have greater diversity than it has had since the renaissance.
there is an imperialism of culture which is harder to overcome than the imperialism of power. long after the western (roman) empire fell -- indeed, until the reformation -- all european culture retained a tincture of roman imperialism. it now has, for us, a west-european imperialistic flavour. i think that, if we are to feel at home in the world after the present war, we shall have to admit asia to equality in our thoughts, not only politically, but culturally. what changes this will bring about, i do not know, but i am convinced that they will be profound and of the greatest importance.
russell published this summa in 1945. and this lesson has yet, it would seem, to sink in in america.