PODCAST | The Weary Titan: the fading of the “American” 20th Century

Co-hosted with the Centre for International Security Studies (CISS) at the University of Sydney

Most commentary on the Trump administration is Washington-centric and concentrates on  its immediate “shock and awe” features, and their resulting short-term uncertainties. But much larger and more consequential questions arise.

This public lecture takes a different but parallel track, by situating current-day “America First” initiatives within the context of a long evolving US international “hegemony” that is now ceasing to control either domestic or international expectations.

The lecture compares the fading of the “American” Twentieth Century with the ending of the British Nineteenth Century, and will draw some tentative conclusions about the prospects for order—and disorder—in the emerging globalised Twenty-First Century.

Q and A 


Laurence Whitehead is a Senior Research Fellow in Politics at Nuffield College, Oxford University, Senior Fellow of the College and a founding figure in the study of democracy and dictatorship. Among his many publications are Latin America: A New Interpretation,  and Democratization: Theory and Experience. He is also co-author of many edited publications including The Obama Administration and the Americas: Shifting the Balance, Democratization in America: A Comparative–Historical Analysis and Citizen Security in Latin America. His latest book is IIliberal Practices: Territorial Variation within Large Federal Democracies, edited jointly with Jacqueline Behrend.


Professor James Der Derian is Michael Hintze Chair of International Security Studies and Director of the Centre for International Security Studies. His research and teaching interests are in international security, information technology, international theory, and documentary film. He is author of Virtuous War: Mapping the Military-Industrial-Media-Entertainment Network (Routledge, 2nd ed., 2009) and Critical Practices in International Theory (Routledge, 2009), and co-editor with Costas Constantinou of Sustainable Diplomacies (Palgrave Macmillan, 2010). He has produced three film documentaries with Udris Film, Virtual Y2K, After 9/11, and most recently, Human Terrain, which won the Audience Award at the 2009 Festival dei Popoli in Florence and has been an official selection at numerous international film festivals. His most recent documentary, Project Z: The Final Global Event (co-produced with Phillip Gara), premiered at the 2012 DOK Leipzig Film Festival.


1 August 2018


General Lecture Theatre
The Quadrangle (A14)
University of Sydney
Camperdown, 2006