TED Conversations

Aaron Pillar

Technical Writer, Deluxe Media

This conversation is closed. Start a new conversation
or join one »

Humans may need to leave Earth to survive extinction. Is cultural homogenization necessary for us to achieve the means to facilitate this?

It's hard enough to get countries to align on policy just living on Earth, and many times it doesn't happen. Additionally, the double edged sword is that we want to align on certain items, yet regarding other items we want to retain cultural distinction (and both of these aspirations are perceived as appropriate!). Humans are deeply attached to their unique identity among humanity, and the unending parade of wars exemplifies this. So regarding my question, most people enormously underestimate the level of global cooperation that will be needed to lift all of humanity off the planet and sustain it elsewhere. But if in, say, one thousand years, brought on by technological advancements birthed in the current few hundred years we're in the middle of, we all end up light brown and all part of one global culture ("I'm from Earth, Sector 824"), where countries are extinct, then maybe the psychological foundation of the unified cultural identity that I think we'll need for space colonization will be in place, and we can then do it. Without this change, I personally don't see it happening. What do you think?


Closing Statement from Aaron Pillar

Hi Deepak, thanks for replying. I don't know, you may be right, though consciously I tend to stick to the tangible things in my life. So... when I wrote my question, I was only thinking about the science of stars and planets, and that the sun will eventually burn through its fuel (like all the stars do) and then expand, swallowing the nearby planets (including Earth), etc. So, if we're still around at that point, where we weren't already destroyed by ourselves or something else, there'll be a lot of cooperation needed in leveraging the technology to get off Earth in time. Anna Kazcorowska (below) mentioned focusing on what brings us together. I think that will be more crucial than anyone can imagine.

Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.

Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.