Reading about identity politics in these uncertain times is highly controversial and discombobulating at first. On one hand, many of the older identity conflicts have frozen, in order to focus energies fighting the pandemics. On the other hand though, political speeches of worldwide leaders, indicate that national rivalries are still boiling within. Thus, I think that identity politics is frozen, it has just taken another shape.

In his book, published at the end of 2018, Fukuyama considers identity as an inevitable, intrinsic concept, which is part of the human nature, and that gets triggered by the external environment.

Putting these assumptions as premises for his contentions, he argues for inclusive identity politics, which would exacerbate safety, stability, trust in governments and solidarity. However, in my opinion, this seems pretty utopian as has been reflected even in the most developed liberal democracies with the intolerant management of the migration crisis.

Identity politics can easily lead to inter-identity conflicts, internal and external, rather than encourage discussions and educated political deliberations. So, I think that identity politics is exclusive instead, by definition, triggering the ‘megalothymia’ of the group, even at the expense of the individual one.

Fukuyama also elaborates on what he thinks that the biggest weakness of the current left wing is focusing only on specific marginalised groups, neglecting the rest of the population, which at some point feels invisible, and ends up voting for the far-right wing. This impedes the leftists from being successful, despite the high inequality that is ubiquitous in the social life.

The analysis in the book goes back to the Western philosophers, beginning from the antique Greek philosophy, the Enlightenment philosophers, Hegel, Nietzche, Federalists, and up to modern political scientists. However, despite trying to bring sporadic examples of the Indian and Middle Eastern identity politics, much of Fukuyama’s analysis in this book is confined within the USA, and European setting. As the compiling of the information and evidence in the book is efficient, sometimes, I noticed slippery slopes in his arguments. He is very opinionated and cannot help but jump to conclusions rapidly. Even if some of his conclusions are right, I still express as a minor criticism on the logical methodology he reaches them.

Amid the pandemics, we can see that as the humanitarian health crisis is global; however, the politics and the actions continue very much to be local. It seems that local reactions are more agile, efficient and even effective, than actions taken at a global, or even regional scale. Does this prove Fukuyama right that national identity politics cannot be replaced by transnational bodies, such as the EU?
Fukuyama was worried about military expression of identity politics at the time when he wrote the book. However, now the expression has taken a humanitarian aid form. Will the aftermath of this current unusual world war lead to an economic fight among different nations about economic resources? Will that be the post-war new identity politics form of expression? Can liberal democracies be defeated or endangered by identity politics?