El síndrome del gran hombre

En nuestra era globalizada, se supone que vastas fuerzas impersonales determinan los acontecimientos. Los mercados globalizados, el comercio sin trabas, el islamismo militante, el despertar de China: estas son las cosas que los historiadores y estrategas suelen presentar como las fuerzas más importantes que están dando forma a nuestro destino. Sin embargo, la mayoría de la gente no ve las cosas de esa manera.

En lugar de ello, instintivamente buscan “grandes hombres” como agentes de la historia, esos hombres (y mujeres) que parecen forjar las circunstancias a través de su visión política, su carisma personal y la fuerza de sus demandas morales. Muchos creen que por pura fuerza de convicción y personalidad estas figuras pueden traer una luz de esperanza a un universo que, de lo contrario, sería distante e impersonal.

Esta ansia de hombres o mujeres providenciales en nuestra época global es el resultado de al menos tres factores. El primero tiene relación con la complejidad y vulnerabilidad de nuestro mundo. El segundo, paradójicamente, refleja nuestro creciente cinismo con respecto a la política y los políticos. Y el tercero es el resultado de nuestra cultura mediática, obsesionada con poner un “rostro” a los acontecimientos.

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