It was Thomas Jefferson who envisioned the United States as a great 'empire of liberty.' In the first new one-volume history in two decades, David Reynolds takes Jefferson's phrase as a key to the saga of America - helping unlock both its grandeur and its paradoxes. He examines how the anti-empire of 1776 became the greatest superpower the world has seen, how the country that offered liberty and opportunity on a scale unmatched in Europe nevertheless founded its prosperity on the labour of black slaves and the dispossession of the Native Americans. He explains how these tensions between empire and liberty have often been resolved by faith - both the evangelical Protestantism that has energized U.S. politics since the foundation of the nation and the larger faith in American righteousness that has impelled the country's expansion. Reynolds' account is driven by a compelling argument which illuminates our contemporary world.
The Oxford History of the United States is by far the most respected multi-volume history of our nation. The series includes three Pulitzer Prize winners, two New York Times bestsellers, and winners of the Bancroft and Parkman Prizes. Now, in the newest volume in the series, one of America's most esteemed historians, Gordon S. Wood, offers a brilliant account of the early American Republic, ranging from 1789 and the beginning of the national government to the end of the War of 1812. As Wood reveals, the period was marked by tumultuous change in all aspects of American life--in politics, society, economy, and culture. The men who founded the new government had high hopes for the future, but few of their hopes and dreams worked out quite as they expected. They hated political parties but parties nonetheless emerged. Some wanted the United States to become a great fiscal-military state like those of Britain and France; others wanted the country to remain a rural agricultural state very different from the European states. Instead, by 1815 the United States became something neither group anticipated. Many leaders expected American culture to flourish and surpass that of Europe; instead it became popularized and vulgarized. The leaders also hope to see the end of slavery; instead, despite the release of many slaves and the end of slavery in the North, slavery was stronger in 1815 than it had been in 1789. Many wanted to avoid entanglements with Europe, but instead the country became involved in Europe's wars and ended up waging another war with the former mother country. Still, with a new generation emerging by 1815, most Americans were confident and optimistic about the future of their country. Named a New York Times Notable Book, Empire of Liberty offers a marvelous account of this pivotal era when America took its first unsteady steps as a new and rapidly expanding nation.
A History of American Imperialism from Benjamin Franklin to Paul Wolfowitz
Author: Richard H. Immerman
Publisher: Princeton University Press
Tells the story of the men throughout American history who used the rhetoric of liberty to further imperial ambitions, and argues that the quest for empire has guided the nation's architects from the very beginning--and continues to do so today. By the author of The CIA in Guatemala.
Today there is much talk of a 'crisis of trust'; a crisis which is almost certainly genuine, but usually misunderstood. Trust: A History offers a new perspective on the ways in which trust and distrust have functioned in past societies, providing an empirical and historical basis against which the present crisis can be examined, and suggesting ways in which the concept of trust can be used as a tool to understand our own and other societies. Geoffrey Hosking argues that social trust is mediated through symbolic systems, such as religion and money, and the institutions associated with them, such as churches and banks. Historically these institutions have nourished trust, but the resulting trust networks have tended to create quite tough boundaries around themselves, across which distrust is projected against outsiders. Hosking also shows how nation-states have been particularly good at absorbing symbolic systems and generating trust among large numbers of people, while also erecting distinct boundaries around themselves, despite an increasingly global economy. He asserts that in the modern world it has become common to entrust major resources to institutions we know little about, and suggests that we need to learn from historical experience and temper this with more traditional forms of trust, or become an ever more distrustful society, with potentially very destabilising consequences.
The Journal of the Civil War Era Volume 2, Number 1 March 2012 TABLE OF CONTENTS Forum The Future of Civil War Era Studies Stephen Berry, Michael T. Bernath, Seth Rockman, Barton A. Myers, Anne Marshall, Lisa M. Brady, Judith Giesberg, & Jim Downs Articles Jacqueline G. Campbell "The Unmeaning Twaddle about Order 28″: Ben Butler and Confederate Women in Occupied New Orleans David C. Williard Executions, Justice, and Reconciliation in North Carolina's Western Piedmont, 1865-67 Matthew C. Hulbert Constructing Guerrilla Memory: John Newman Edwards and Missouri's Irregular Lost Cause Book Reviews Books Received Professional Notes Kathi Kern & Linda Levstik Teaching the New Departure: the United States vs. Susan B. Anthony Notes on Contributors The Journal of the Civil War Era takes advantage of the flowering of research on the many issues raised by the sectional crisis, war, Reconstruction, and memory of the conflict, while bringing fresh understanding to the struggles that defined the period, and by extension, the course of American history in the nineteenth century.
Empire of Liberty takes a new look at the public life, thought, and ambiguous legacy of one of America's most revered statesmen, offering new insight into the meaning of Jefferson in the American experience. This work examines Jefferson's legacy for American foreign policy in the light of several critical themes which continue to be highly significant today: the struggle between isolationists and interventionists, the historic ambivalence over the nation's role as a crusader for liberty, and the relationship between democracy and peace. Written by two distinguished scholars, this book provides invaluable insight into the classic ideas of American diplomacy.
Between Two Worlds is a story teeming with people on the move, making decisions, indulging or resisting their desires and dreams. In the seventeenth century a quarter of a million men, women, and children left England's shores for America. Some were explorers and merchants, others soldiers and missionaries; many were fugitives from poverty and persecution. All, in their own way, were adventurers, risking their lives and fortunes to make something of themselves overseas. They irrevocably changed the land and indigenous peoples they encountered - and their new world changed them. But that was only half the story. The plantations established from Maine to the Caribbean needed support at home, especially royal endorsement and money, which made adventurers of English monarchs and investors too. Attitudes to America were crucial, and evolved as the colonies grew in size, prosperity, and self-confidence. Meanwhile, for those who had crossed the ocean, America forced people to rethink the country in which they had been raised, and to which they remained attached after emigration. In tandem with new ideas about the New World, migrants pondered their English mother country's traditions and achievements, its problems and its uncertain future in an age of war and revolution. Using hundreds of letters, journals, reports, pamphlets and contemporary books, Between Two Worlds recreates this fascinating transatlantic history - one which has often been neglected or misunderstood on both sides of the Atlantic in the centuries since.
An exploration of the political significance of the Arctic's vast untapped wealth of natural resources, and a gripping account of the race to exploit them On August 2, 2007, a Russian submarine captured world headlines by making a dangerous journey to the bottom of the Arctic seabed and planting a metal, rustfree national flag more than 14,000 feet beneath the North Pole. The aim was to assert Russia's legal sovereignty over a region whose importance had only recently started to become apparent as its melting ice had made, or was expected to make, vast natural resources open to exploitation. The latest estimates are that the region holds around 13% of the world's undiscovered oil and as much as 30% of undiscovered natural gas reserves that would be hugely profitable for any country that managed to secure control over them. Gold, platinum, copper, and other precious metals have also been found along the coast. Neighboring countries - Russia, the United States, Canada, Denmark, and Norway - are already doing everything they can to mark out new borders. The ensuing political disagreements over the issue are already rife. In particular, games of political intrigue between Moscow and Washington are being played out in the region. But as the world's resources become increasingly scarce and valuable, could the scramble for Arctic resources become violent? Could a "War for the Arctic" be fought? Praise for The Oil Hunters: "The Dramatic Days of oil exploration in the first half of the 20th century are narrated in gripping fashion by Roger Howard." -The Spectator "A fascinating story for anyone interested in one of today's main economic problems: How to reduce the hundreds of billions that Americans spend every year to import oil...the book is packed with intrepid geologists, risk-averse business people, hardup Mideast rulers and ingenious promoters- all concerned with driving up profits."-The Associated Press
The New Deal: A Global History provides a radically new interpretation of a pivotal period in US history. The first comprehensive study of the New Deal in a global context, the book compares American responses to the international crisis of capitalism and democracy during the 1930s to responses by other countries around the globe—not just in Europe but also in Latin America, Asia, and other parts of the world. Work creation, agricultural intervention, state planning, immigration policy, the role of mass media, forms of political leadership, and new ways of ruling America's colonies—all had parallels elsewhere and unfolded against a backdrop of intense global debates. By avoiding the distortions of American exceptionalism, Kiran Klaus Patel shows how America's reaction to the Great Depression connected it to the wider world. Among much else, the book explains why the New Deal had enormous repercussions on China; why Franklin D. Roosevelt studied the welfare schemes of Nazi Germany; and why the New Dealers were fascinated by cooperatives in Sweden—but ignored similar schemes in Japan. Ultimately, Patel argues, the New Deal provided the institutional scaffolding for the construction of American global hegemony in the postwar era, making this history essential for understanding both the New Deal and America's rise to global leadership.