I recently read a book called The Fourth Turning–An American Prophecy: What the Cycles of History Tell Us About America’s Next Rendezvous with Destiny. It was referred to me by about a half dozen friends over the period of about a week, so I figured I should pay attention and read up.
I was not disappointed.
This book is a magnificent treatise on generational theory — one that I can actually get behind, which doesn’t over-simplify but still provides rhythm and coherence. It also provides great information on how these natural cycles help us predict the future.
Put simply, this work is another well-researched example which supports what I’ve been going on and on about — that we are about to experience a massive work revolution.*
Towards the end (page 331 if you’re reading the hardcover), the authors provide us with a glimpse into an imagined, but very possible, bright future. NOTE: If you haven’t read The Fourth Turning, you’ll see some words in this quote that you will not recognize — I highly recommend reading this book, so that’s all I’m going to say about them.
The new saeculum could find America, and the world, a much better place. Like England in the Reformation Saeculum, the Superpower America of the Millennial Saeculum might merely be a prelude to a higher plane of civilization. Its new civic life might more nearly resemble that “shining city on a hill” to which colonial ancestors aspired. Its ecology might be freshly repaired and newly sustainable, its economy rejuvenated, its politics functional and fair, its media elevated in tone, its culture creative and uplifting, its gender and race relations improved, its commonalities embraced and difference accepted, its institutions free of the corruptions that today seem entrenched beyond correction. People might enjoy new realms of personal, family, community, and national fulfillment. America’s borders might be redrawn around an altered but more cogent geography of public community. Its influence on world peace could be more potent, on world culture more inspiring. All this is achievable as well.
I love this. THIS is what we’re after.
I got this book from my local library. It’s well worth your time.
*The authors would argue that the coming revolution will impact everything, not just work. They are right, of course. My concern is how the coming revolution, which will impact everything, then impacts the way we work together — as work is the dominant part of our lives.