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The American Century and Beyond


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Table of Contents

Introduction 1. The War of 1898 and the Dawn of the American Century, 1893-190119. "Bursting with Good Intentions": The United States in World Affairs, 1901-1913 2. "A New Age": Wilson, the Great War, and U.S. Foreign Policy, 1913-1921 3. Involvement Without Commitment, 1921-1931 4. The Great Transformation: Depression, Isolationism, and War, 1931-1941 5. "Five Continents and Seven Seas": World War II and the Emergence of American Globalism, 1941-1945 6. "A Noble Burden Far From Our Shores": Truman, the Cold War, and the Revolution in American Foreign Policy, 1945-1953 7. Coexistence and Crises, 1953-1961 8. Gulliver's Troubles: Kennedy, Johnson, and the Limits of Power, 1961-1969 9. Nixon, Kissinger, and the End of the Postwar Era, 1969-1974 10. Foreign Policy in an Age of Dissonance, 1974-1981 11. "A Unique and Extraordinary Time in World History": Gorbachev, Reagan, Bush, and the End of the Cold War, 1981-1991 12. The Strength of a Giant: America as Hyperpower, 1992-2001 13. From 9/11 to the Wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, 2001-2013 Epilogue Bibiliographic Essay

About the Author

George C. Herring is Alumni Professor of History Emeritus at the University of Kentucky. A leading authority on U.S. foreign relations, he is the former editor of Diplomatic History and a past president of the Society for Historians of American Foreign Relations. He is the author of America's Longest War: The United States and Vietnam, 1950-1975 and LBJ and Vietnam: A Different Kind of War, among other books.


"This book will be on my reading list for the foreseeable future and will be a 'go-to' text for any student who argues that the United States is an unqualified good in world politics. For me it serves best as a series of cautionary tales, linked in a grand narrative that is in itself a magnificent achievement."--Andrew J. Williams, H-Diplo "The strength of this book is the author's Herculean power of synthesis...Herring recaptures a quarter-millennium of American foreign policy with fluidity and felicity...we have long been waiting for a single-volume history like this one, and "From Colony to Superpower" deserves a place on the bookshelf."--New York Times Book Review "Its first achievement is its feat of inclusiveness, managed by making quick work of many interesting subplots of the United States' rich and complex relations with the world...The narrative power lies partly in identifying themes that gradually give a strong organizational cohesion to his story...It is revisionism of the best kind, quiet but insistent, reinforced by archival evidence and deftly drawn parallels."--Howard W. French, The New York Times "An impressive, up-to-date diplomatic history of the US that masterfully employs traditional, revisionnist, and in many instances synthetic interpretations in a story line from Colonial America to the second Bush administration.... This will be an award-winning book that becomes the standard text for US diplomatic history. A superb accomplishment. Essential."--C.W. Haury, CHOICE "The only volume in the series that spans the entirety of the American past, From Colony to Superpower could not be more timely, more colorful, or more compelling for Americans seeking to understand the causes and the consequences of the quagmires in Afghanistan and Iraq. Herring is well equipped to provide that analysis."--The Chronicle of Higher Education "In this splendidly detailed account, George Herring expertly guides us through the rich and fascinating story of America's foreign relations. This is history on a grand scale, clearly and elegantly rendered. Anyone who wants to understand how the United States has come to occupy its current place on the world stage should read this magisterial book."--Fredrik Logevall, co-author of A People and a Nation

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