American Empire: Roosevelt’s Geographer and the Prelude to by Neil Smith

By Neil Smith

An American Empire, built over the past century, in the past overtook eu colonialism, and it's been commonly assumed that the recent globalism it espoused took us "beyond geography." Neil Smith debunks that assumption, supplying an incisive argument that American globalism had a unique geography and was once pieced jointly as a part of a robust geographical imaginative and prescient. the ability of geography didn't die with the twilight of ecu colonialism, however it did switch essentially. That the inauguration of the yank Century introduced a lack of public geographical sensibility within the usa was once itself a political symptom of the rising empire. This ebook presents a necessary geographical-historical context for realizing the facility and bounds of up to date globalization, that may now be noticeable as representing the 3rd of 3 exact historic moments of U.S. international ambition.

The tale unfolds via a decisive account of the occupation of Isaiah Bowman (1878–1950), the main well-known American geographer of the 20 th century. for almost 4 many years Bowman operated round the vortex of country strength, operating to carry an American order to the worldwide panorama. An explorer at the well-known Machu Picchu excursion of 1911 who got here to be identified first as "Woodrow Wilson’s geographer," and later as Frankin D. Roosevelt’s, Bowman used to be current on the construction of U.S. liberal international coverage.

A quarter-century later, Bowman used to be on the heart of Roosevelt’s kingdom division, excited about the disposition of Germany and heightened U.S. entry to eu colonies; he used to be defined through Dean Acheson as a key "architect of the United Nations." In that interval he was once a pace-setter in American technology, served as president of Johns Hopkins collage, and have become an early and vociferous chilly warrior. a sophisticated, contradictory, and from time to time debatable determine who was once a great deal within the public eye, he seemed at the conceal of Time journal.

Bowman’s profession as a geographer in an period whilst the worth of geography was once deeply wondered presents a different window into the contradictory makes use of of geographical wisdom within the development of the yankee Empire. Smith’s ancient excavation finds, in wide strokes but with vigorous aspect, that contemporary American-inspired globalization springs now not from the Nineteen Eighties yet from previous moments in 1919 and 1945, either one of which resulted in failure. by means of recharting the geography of this heritage, Smith brings the politics—and the limits—of modern globalization sharply into focus.

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