Contemporary America, with its unparalleled armaments and ambition, seems to many commentators a new empire. Others angrily reject the designation. What stakes would being an empire have for our identity at home and our role abroad? A pre-eminent American historian addresses these issues in light of the history of empires since antiquity. This elegantly written book examines the structure and impact of these mega-states and asks whether the United States shares their traits and behaviour.
Charles S. Maier is the Leverett Saltonstall Professor of History at Harvard University.
Questions at the Outset Part One: Recurring Structures Introduction: The Imperial Arena 1. What Is an Empire? 2. Frontiers 3. "Call It Peace" Part Two: America's Turn Introduction: Highland Park and Hiroshima 4. Frontiers and Forces in the Cold War 5. An Empire of Production 6. An Empire of Consumption Afterword: The Vase of Uruk Tables Notes Acknowledgments Index