Islas de aislamiento

PARIS – Los japoneses y los británicos pueden parecer muy diferentes, pero una mirada más atenta revela que estos dos pueblos isleños comparten algo así como un destino paralelo. Con sus viejas ambiciones imperiales y su desprecio generalizado por los grandes continentes de los que los separan los más estrechos de los mares, tanto los británicos como los japoneses son vulnerables a la melodía de aislamiento de las sirenas. Desafortunadamente, ambos hoy parecen sucumbir a esa peligrosa tentación.

Quizá la geografía sea el destino. Como isleños, los británicos y los japoneses tuvieron relaciones cautelosas -y muchas veces un complejo de superioridad- con sus grandes vecinos continentales, Europa y China respectivamente. Ambos históricamente compensaron su aislamiento con gobiernos centrales fuertes, marinas poderosas, un espíritu empresarial dinámico, una cultura vibrante y una ambición imperial.

Hoy, Japón y el Reino Unido pretenden ser sociedades abiertas, interesadas en el proceso de globalización. En realidad, ambos países siguen manteniendo una actitud básicamente introspectiva y están preocupados por la desintegración de su cultura original. Los dos intentan desesperadamente mantener a los inmigrantes a raya, ya sea a través de la segregación cultural en el Reino Unido o, como en el caso de Japón, mediante el simple rechazo. Cuanto más se entrelazan las civilizaciones en el nuevo orden mundial, más los japoneses y los británicos se sienten tentados de mantenerse distantes y apartados.

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