Carroll Quigley (1910–1977) was a noted historian, polymath, and theorist of the evolution of civilizations.
Quigley was born in Boston, and attended Harvard University, where he studied history and earned B.A, M.A., and Ph.D. degrees. He taught at Princeton University, and then at Harvard, and then at the School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University from 1941 to 1976.
From 1941 until 1969, he taught a two-semester course at Georgetown on the development of civilizations. According to the obituary in the Washington Star, many alumni of Georgetown's School of Foreign Service asserted that this was "the most influential course in their undergraduate careers".
In addition to his academic work, Quigley served as a consultant to the U.S. Department of Defense, the U.S. Navy, the Smithsonian Institution, and the House Select Committee on Astronautics and Space Exploration in the 1950s. Quigley served as a book reviewer for the Washington Star and was a contributor and editorial board member of Current History. His work emphasized "inclusive diversity" as a value of Western Civilization long before diversity became commonplace, and he denounced Platonic doctrines as an especially pernicious deviation from this ideal, preferring the pluralism of Thomas Aquinas. Quigley said of himself that he was a conservative defending the liberal tradition of the West. He was an early and fierce critic of the Vietnam War, and he was against the activities of the military-industrial complex which he saw as the future downfall of the country.
A site dedicated to Professor Quigley:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carroll_QuigleyCarroll Quigley: Theorist of Civilizations
Carroll Quigley Interview (part 1-5)