Provides a critical re-evaluation of US territorial expansionism and imperialism from 1783 to the present The United States has been described by many of its foreign and domestic critics as an “empire”. Providing a wide-ranging analysis of the United States as a territorial, imperial power from its foundation to the present day, this book explores the United States’ acquisition or long-term occupation of territories through a chronological perspective. It begins by exploring early continental expansion, such as the purchase of the Louisiana Territory from Napoleon Bonaparte in 1803, and traces US imperialism through to the controversial ongoing presence of US forces at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba. The book provides fresh insights into the history of US territorial expansion and imperialism, bringing together more well-known instances (such as the purchase of Alaska) with those less-frequently discussed (such as the acquisition of the Guano Islands after 1856). The volume considers key historical debates, controversies and turning points, providing a historiographically-grounded re-evaluation of US expansion from 1783 to the present day. Key Features Provides case studies of different examples of US territorial expansion/imperialism, and adds much-needed context to ongoing debates over US imperialism for students of both History and Politics Analyses many of the better known instances of US imperialism (for example, Cuba and the Philippines), while also considering often-overlooked examples such as the US Virgin Islands, American Samoa and Guam Explores American imperialism from a “territorial acquisition/long-term occupation” viewpoint which differentiates it from many other books that instead focus on informal and economic imperialism Discusses the presence of the US in key places such as Guantanamo Bay, the Panama Canal Zone and the Arctic ; Providing a wide-ranging analysis of the United States as a territorial, imperial power from its foundation to the present day, this book explores the United States’ acquisition or long-term occupation of territories through a chronological perspective. ; Introduction: Defining an Empire; 1. Atlantic to Pacific (1783–1893); 2. Heading Northwards (1812-1903); 3. Leaving the Continent (1817-1890); 4. A Two Ocean Empire (1890–1898); 5. Spanish Plunder (1898–1917); 6. An Empire Among Equals (1899–1917); 7. Occupation Over Annexation (1912-1973); 8. Continuing Imperialism (1940-2013); Conclusion; Bibliography.
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A concise and lucid survey of US foreign policy. Adam Burns convincingly argues that empire has been a central feature of the American experience since the nation's founding.
Adam Burns is Senior Lecturer in History at the University of Wolverhampton. Since completing his PhD at the University of Edinburgh in 2010, Adam has taught US history and politics at a variety of secondary and higher education institutions. He has published a number of scholarly articles for journals such as American Nineteenth Century History, Comparative American Studies and Philippine Studies, and was also a contributor to A Companion to Theodore Roosevelt (Wiley-Blackwell, 2011).