Colossus The Price of America's Empire

ISBN-10: 1594200130
ISBN-13: 9781594200137
Edition: 2004
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Description: Niall Ferguson brings his renowned historical and economic depth of field to bear on a bold and sweeping reckoning with America's imperial status and its consequences. Is America an empire? Certainly not, according to our government. Despite the  More...

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Book details

List price: $25.95
Copyright year: 2004
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 4/26/2004
Binding: Hardcover
Pages: 400
Size: 6.75" wide x 9.75" long x 1.75" tall
Weight: 1.540
Language: English

Niall Ferguson brings his renowned historical and economic depth of field to bear on a bold and sweeping reckoning with America's imperial status and its consequences. Is America an empire? Certainly not, according to our government. Despite the conquest of two sovereign states in as many years, despite the presence of more than 750 military installations in two thirds of the world's countries and despite his stated intention "to extend the benefits of freedom...to every corner of the world," George W. Bush maintains that "America has never been an empire." "We don't seek empires," insists Defense Secretary Rumsfeld. "We're not imperialistic." Nonsense, says Niall Ferguson. In Colossushe argues that in both military and economic terms America is nothing less than the most powerful empire the world has ever seen. Just like the British Empire a century ago, the United States aspires to globalize free markets, the rule of law, and representative government. In theory it's a good project, says Ferguson. Yet Americans shy away from the long-term commitments of manpower and money that are indispensable if rogue regimes and failed states really are to be changed for the better. Ours, he argues, is an empire with an attention deficit disorder, imposing ever more unrealistic timescales on its overseas interventions. Worse, it's an empire in denial-a hyperpower that simply refuses to admit the scale of its global responsibilities. And the negative consequences will be felt at home as well as abroad. In an alarmingly persuasive final chapter Ferguson warns that this chronic myopia also applies to our domestic responsibilities. When overstretch comes, he warns, it will come from within-and it will reveal that more than just the feet of the American colossus is made of clay.

Niall Ferguson was born April 18, 1964, in Glasgow. He is a Scottish historian. He specializes in financial and economic history as well as the history of empire. He is the Laurence A. Tisch Professor of History at Harvard University and the William Ziegler Professor of Business Administration at Harvard Business School. His books include Paper and Iron: Hamburg Business and German Politics in the Era of Inflation 1897-1927 (1993), Virtual History: Alternatives and Counterfactuals (1997), The Pity of War: Explaining World War One (1998), The World's Banker: The History of the House of Rothschild (1998), The Cash Nexus: Money and Power in the Modern World, 1700-2000 (2001), Empire: The Rise and Demise of the British World Order and the Lessons for Global Power (2003), Colossus: The Rise and Fall of the American Empire (2004), The War of the World: Twentieth-Century Conflict and the Descent of the West (2006) and The Ascent of Money: A Financial History of the World (2008), Civilization: The West and the Rest (2011) and The Great Degeneration: How Institutions Decay and Economies Die.

Introduction
Rise
The Limits of the American Empire
The Imperialism of Anti-Imperialism
The Civilization of Clashes
Splendid Multilateralism
Fall?
The Case for Liberal Empire
Going Home or Organizing Hypocrisy
"Impire": Europe Between Brussels and Byzantium
The Closing Door
Conclusion: Looking Homeward
Statistical Appendix
Acknowledgments
Notes
Bibliography
Index

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