From White Settlement to World Hegemony

Victor Kiernan


Victor Kiernan

Distributed for Zed Books

With a Preface by Eric Hobsbawm and an Afterword by John Trumpbour
460 pages | 5 x 9 | © 1978, 2015
Paper $21.95 ISBN: 9781783605989 Published October 2015 For sale in North and South America only
While there have been many analyses of American imperialism, few have equaled the breadth or insight of America: From White Settlement to World Hegemony, which was one of the first books to provide a historical perspective on the origins of the American empire.
Victor Kiernan, heralded by Edward Said as the “great Scottish historian of empire,” employs a nuanced knowledge of history, literature, and politics in his tracing of the evolution of American power. Far reaching and ambitious in its scope, the book combines accounts of the changing relationship between Native Americans and the white population with readings of the works of key cultural figures such as Melville and Whitman, as well as an analysis of the way in which money and politics became so closely intertwined in American democracy. The result is a compelling account of how the country came to be the dangerous global power that it is today. Brought up-to-date with an afterword by John Trumpbour, research director at Harvard Law School,  this new edition includes a look at America’s ongoing war on terror.  
Introduction by John Trumpbour
Preface by Eric Hobsbawm

Part One: The Winning of the National Territory
1. The Birth of a Nation
2. The Pursuit of Happiness
3. White Man and Red Man

Part Two: Middle Decades
4. The literary Mirror
5. From West Indies to Far East
6. Civil War and After
7. The Last Indian Wars

Part Three: Overseas Expansion and the War with Spain
8. The Red Man in Custody
9. New Visions of Empire
10. Latin America and Further Asia
11. Anglo-Saxons and their Wars

Part Four: Imperial Choices for a New Century
12. The Progressivist Era
13. The Philippines Experiment, and Direct or Indirect Rule
14. Dollar Diplomacy in Central America
15. Old World Frustrations, and Ideas of a New World Order

Part Five: Two Strides to World Power
16. Great War and not so great Peace
17. Victory and After: The Mirror of Science Fiction
18. America, the World's Banker
19. Slump Years, and a New Look at the Red Indian
20. From Isolationism to Conquest

Part Six: The American Hegemony
21. Capitalism, Militarism and the Cold War
22. The Old Empires and Neo-Colonialism
23. War in Vietnam and its Repercussions
24. The Middle East and Africa
25. Latin America
26. Retrospect and Prospect

Epilogue by John Trumpbour

Review Quotes
Noam Chomsky
"The re-issue of Kiernan’s fine study of American imperialism is a very welcome event. His acute analysis, penetrating insights, and immense knowledge have lost none of their luster and are of great contemporary significance."
Perry Anderson, in American Foreign Policy and Its Thinkers
“A graphic account of imperial imaginings.”
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