Ricardo Duchesne

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Ricardo Duchesne
Alma materYork University
Scientific career
FieldsHistorical sociologist
InstitutionsUniversity of New Brunswick

Ricardo Duchesne is a Canadian historical sociologist and professor at the University of New Brunswick. His main research interests are Western civilization, the rise of the West, and the ideology of diversity. In his 2011 book The Uniqueness of Western Civilization he emphasizes the "continuous creativity" of Europeans from ancient Greek times to the present and criticises what he sees as the destructive effects of multiculturalism on modern Western culture. In his 2017 book, Canada in Decay: Mass Immigration, Diversity, and the Ethnocide of Euro-Canadians, he argues that Canada is not a "nation of immigrants" but a nation created by Anglo and French pioneers and settlers. "Canada in Decay" also questions the double standards of multiculturalism in granting both "collective" ethnic rights and "individual rights" to minorities and immigrant groups while suppressing the ethno-cultural rights of Euro-Canadians.[1]

Career overview[edit]

Born in Puerto Rico, Duchesne studied History at McGill University and later at Concordia University, under the supervision of George Rudé. In 1994 he received a doctorate in Social & Political Thought at York University. His Dissertation, "All Contraries Confounded: Historical Materialism and the Transition-to-Capitalism Debate",[2] was awarded the "Doctoral Prize Award" for best dissertation of the year.[3] In 1995, Duchesne was appointed assistant professor in the department of social science at the University of New Brunswick, where he has remained since.


Martin Hewson, politics and international studies professor at the University of Regina, argues that in reaction against multiculturalism, a post-multicultural world history is now appearing. Hewson points to Duchesne's The Uniqueness of Western Civilization (2011) as its leading book and argues, "The main achievement of post-multicultural world history is to have established that there were numerous critical non-economic divergences between Europe and other regions. The West was both peculiar and inventive across many domains."[4]

In his main work, The Uniqueness of Western Civilization,[5][6] Duchesne claims that Western culture has been devalued by a revisionist multicultural ideology which has been sweeping the academic world since the 1960s,[7] and has argued for the continued validity of the traditional view of Europe as the one culture that produced the modern world and adding that Europe has always been the most creative civilization since the Greek discovery of reason, prose writing, tragedy, dialectical reasoning, theoretical science, citizenship and democratic politics.[8][9] Duchesne challenges World historians in their claim that there were surprising economic similarities between Europe and Asia as late as 1800.[10] He questions the way in which the debate about the 'rise of the West' has been conceptualized merely in terms of the onset of the modern world, the Scientific Revolution, the creation of a world capitalist economy, and the changes brought about in Europe during the Industrial Revolution. Duchesne maintains throughout the book four main theses:

  • In the last few decades, the writing of world history has been driven by academics determined to portray the achievements of civilizations in terms that support the egalitarian idea that all cultures are similar, producing a shoddy historiography and social science that have devalued the intrinsic quality of Western civilization and seriously underestimated its accomplishments between ancient times and the present day.[11]
  • At least since classical antiquity, the culture of the West has always been “in a state of variance from the world”.[12]
  • In cultivating a virtually unparalleled democratic culture, with the Greek and Roman assemblies, parliaments and municipal communes, universities, reading societies, intellectual salons and newspapers, the West made possible the rise of modernity.
  • He identifies the roots of the West's restless creativity in the unique aristocratic culture of Indo-Europeans,[13] with its ethos of heroic individualism and competitive spirit.[14][15]

Duchesne has criticized the work of world historians such as Kenneth Pomeranz, Immanuel Wallerstein, Patrick O'Brien,[16] Bing Wong, Andre Gunder Frank, John Hobson, and Sebastian Conrad,[17] as well as Ian Morris,[18] accusing them of systematically downsizing Western history and civilization achievements.

Duchesne is a vehement critic of immigrant multiculturalism[19][20][21] and political correctness in academe.[22] Since the publication of his 2011 book, Duchesne has been arguing that the multicultural interpretation of the West is part of a wider effort by established elites to create heterogeneous race-mixed societies inside all European-created nations through the promotion of mass immigration.

Duchesne also criticizes mainstream conservatives for advancing the idea that Western political identity is based only on universal liberal democratic values that are true for all human beings. He argues that liberalism is uniquely Western and that Western identity is also deeply connected to the ethnic character of Europeans.[16][17][23] More recently, Duchesne has argued that civic nationalism is consistent with a strong collective sense of ethnic national identity.[1] The Enlightenment's cosmopolitan "promotion of peaceful relations among nations and opposition to the slave trade," he has written, should not be interpreted "as a call for a globalist, race-mixed order in the West." [2]. He has criticized Isaiah Berlin, Charles Taylor, among others, for promoting the idea that Johann Gottfried Herder was the original advocate of multiculturalism and racial diversity inside Western nations, arguing instead that Herder was a promoter of the value of distinctive nationalities in the world peacefully co-existing alongside each other in a multicultural world order. [3]

Council of European Canadians[edit]

In mid-2014, he created the blog "Council of European Canadians", with the stated purpose that "Canada should remain majority, not exclusively, European in its ethnic composition and cultural character [because] Canada is a nation created by individuals with an Anglo/French/European heritage, not by individuals from diverse races and cultures."[24][25] In one of his blog posts, Duchesne criticized a motion of the Vancouver council to investigate discriminatory policies imposed by Whites on Chinese immigrants in the city before 1947 as an exercise in manipulating "white guilt",[26] claiming they have "the goal of taking Canada away from the Europeans and transforming the nation into a multicultural and multiracial society."[27] The comments sparked controversy with councillor Kerry Jang saying that the city council's move should not be taken this way,[26] that he considers Duchesne' comments to be hate speech, and that "I don't think he should be teaching".[28] The University of New Brunswick rejected the complaint on the grounds of academic freedom.[25][28] Duchesne addressed these accusations at his blog in the article "Chinese-Canadian Activism versus Academic Freedom."


  • The Uniqueness of Western Civilization. Studies in Critical Social Sciences. 28. Leiden and Boston: Brill. 2011. ISBN 978-90-04-19461-8.
  • Faustian Man in a Multicultural Age. Arktos. 2017. ISBN 978-1-910524-84-8.
  • Canada In Decay: Mass Immigration, Diversity, and the Ethnocide of Euro-Canadians. Black House Publishing. 2017. ISBN 978-1-910881-93-4.
  • "Defending the Rise of Western Culture Against its Multicultural Critics," The European Legacy: Toward New Paradigms (2005) 10#5, pp. 455–484. online


  1. ^ Canada In Decay: Mass Immigration, Diversity, and the Ethnocide of Euro-Canadians. Black House Publishing. 2017. ISBN 978-1-910881-93-4.
  2. ^ Duchesne, Ricardo (1994). "All Contraries Confounded: Historical Materialism and the Transition-to-Capitalism Debate". Ph.D. diss., York University, Toronto.
  3. ^ "Dr. Ricardo Duchesne", University of New Brunswick.
  4. ^ Martin Hewson, "Multicultural vs. Post-Multicultural World History: A Review Essay on The Uniqueness of Western Civilization by Ricardo Duchesne." Cliodynamics 2012. 3: 306–324.
  5. ^ Jones, Eric (2011). "The Uniqueness of Western Civilization," Policy 27 (4), pp. 61–63.
  6. ^ Balch, Stephen H. (2011). "Nowhere but the West," Academic Questions 24 (4), pp. 469-479.
  7. ^ Hewson, Martin (2012). "Multicultural vs. Post-Multicultural World History: A Review Essay," Cliodynamics 3 (2), p. 310.
  8. ^ Znamenski, Andrei (2012). "The 'European Miracle': Warrior Aristocrats, Spirit of Liberty, and Competition as a Discovery Process," The Independent Review 16 (4), pp. 599–610.
  9. ^ Northrup, David (2012). "The Uniqueness of Western Civilization by Ricardo Duchesne," Journal of World History 23 (4), pp. 950–953.
  10. ^ Duchesne, Ricardo (2011). The Uniqueness of Western Civilization. Leiden and Boston: Brill, p. ix.
  11. ^ Duchesne, Ricardo (2011). "Reply to Mark Elvin," Canadian Journal of Sociology 36 (4), pp. 378–387.
  12. ^ Duchesne, Ricardo (2013). "The Uniqueness of the West Reinforced: A Reply to Beckwith, Goldstone, and Turchin," Cliodynamics 4 (1), pp. 86–101.
  13. ^ Havers, Grant (2013). "The Uniqueness of Western Civilization," The European Legacy: Toward New Paradigms, Vol. 18, Issue 5, p. 659.
  14. ^ Duchesne (2011), pp. 383–387.
  15. ^ Duchesne, Ricardo (2013). "Indo-Europeans Were the Most Historically Significant Nomads of the Steppes," Cliodynamics 4 (1), pp. 30–43.
  16. ^ a b Duchesne, Ricardo (2013). "Multicultural Historians: The Assault on Western Civilization and Defilement of the Historical Profession, Part I: Patrick O'Brien on the Scientific Revolution," The Occidental Quarterly 13 (3).
  17. ^ a b Duchesne, Ricardo (2013-14). "Multicultural Historians: The Assault on Western Civilization and Defilement of the Historical Profession, Part II: The Scientific Revolution and the Enlightenment," The Occidental Quarterly 13 (4).
  18. ^ Duchesne, Ricardo (2011): "Review of Why The West Rules – For Now: The Patterns of History and What they Reveal about the Future," Reviews in History
  19. ^ Duchesne, Ricardo (2005). "Defending the Rise of Western Culture Against its Multicultural Critics," The European Legacy: Toward New Paradigms 10 (5), pp. 455-484.
  20. ^ Duchesne, Ricardo (2012). "Multicultural Madness," The Salisbury Review 31 (1), pp. 16–19.
  21. ^ Duchesne, Ricardo (2014). "Will Kymlicka and the Disappearing Dominion," The Quarterly Review
  22. ^ Northrup, David (2012). "The Uniqueness of Western Civilization by Ricardo Duchesne," Journal of World History 23 (4), p. 950.
  23. ^ Duchesne, Ricardo (2012): "Review of Civilization: The Six Ways the West Beat the Rest," Reviews in History
  24. ^ The Council of Euro-Canadians, retrieved 3 July 2014
  25. ^ a b Weller, R. Charles (2017). "'Western' and 'White Civilization': White Nationalism and Eurocentrism at the Crossroads" (PDF). 21st-Century Narratives of World History: Global and Multidisciplinary Perspectives. Palgrave Macmillan. pp. 45–47. ISBN 978-3-319-62078-7.
  26. ^ a b Jon Woodward (2015-01-06). "Prof faces complaint after 'white guilt' remark". CTV News.
  27. ^ Vancouver city councillor and New Brunswick professor locked in feud over 'white apologies', National Post, 12 Januar 2015
  28. ^ a b CBC News (2015-01-08). "UNB defends prof's academic freedom in wake of racism complaint". CBC News.

Further reading[edit]

  • Groves, J. Randall (2012). "Rationalization, Dialectic and the West: An Appraisal of Ricardo Duchesne's Uniqueness of Western Civilization". In: The Coming Clash of Civilization: China versus the West? Proceedings of the 42nd Conference of the International Society for the Comparative Study of Civilizations. (Washington, D.C.): 165-177.

External links[edit]