The Global Republic: America's Inadvertent Rise To World Power

Hardcover | September 23, 2014

byFrank Ninkovich

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For decades the United States has been the most dominant player on the world’s stage. The country’s economic authority, its globally forceful foreign policy, and its leading position in international institutions tend to be seen as the result of a long-standing, deliberate drive to become a major global force. Furthermore, it has become widely accepted that American exceptionalism—the belief that America is a country like no other in history—has been at the root of many of the country’s political, military, and global moves. Frank Ninkovich disagrees.  

One of the preeminent intellectual historians of our time, Ninkovich delivers here his most ambitious and sweeping book to date. He argues that historically the United States has been driven not by a belief in its destiny or its special character but rather by a need to survive the forces of globalization. He builds the powerful case that American foreign policy has long been based on and entangled in questions of global engagement, while also showing that globalization itself has always been distinct from—and sometimes in direct conflict with—what we call international society. 

In the second half of the twentieth century, the United States unexpectedly stumbled into the role of global policeman and was forced to find ways to resolve international conflicts that did not entail nuclear warfare. The United States's decisions were based less in notions of exceptionalism and more in a need to preserve and expand a flourishing global society that had become essential to the American way of life.

Sure to be controversial, The Global Republic compellingly and provocatively counters some of the deepest and most common misconceptions about America’s history and its place in the world.

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For decades the United States has been the most dominant player on the world’s stage. The country’s economic authority, its globally forceful foreign policy, and its leading position in international institutions tend to be seen as the result of a long-standing, deliberate drive to become a major global force. Furthermore, it has becom...

Frank Ninkovich is professor emeritus of history at St. John’s University, New York. He is the author of many books, including Modernity and Power and The Wilsonian Century, both also published by University of Chicago Press. His most recent book is Global Dawn: The Cultural Foundation of American Internationalism. 

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:368 pages, 9 × 6 × 1.2 inPublished:September 23, 2014Publisher:University of Chicago PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:022616473X

ISBN - 13:9780226164731

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Introduction

Chapter One: Provincial Prelude
Chapter Two: Global Society and the Challenge to Exceptionalism
Chapter Three: Gaining Entrée: The United States Joins the Club
Chapter Four: The Wilsonian Anomaly; or, The Three Faces of Wilsonianism
Chapter Five: Restarting Global Society in the 1920s
Chapter Six: The War for International Society: The Coming of World War II
Chapter Seven: Economics versus Politics in the Reinvention of International Society
Chapter Eight: Ideology and Culture as Ingredients of the Cold War
Chapter Nine: Americanization, Globalization, and the End of the Cold War
Chapter Ten: Global Aftermath

Concluding Thoughts
Appendix: Historians and Exceptionalism
Notes
Index

Editorial Reviews

“A spirited cultural and intellectual historical work that presents World War II as a radical break in US foreign relations in an attempt to chart a new path between (or perhaps parallel to) arguments that emphasize empire and those that engage exceptionalism. . . . Ninkovich still effectively pushes readers to rethink their assumptions about how and why the US took on a position of world leadership during and after WWII that continues to shape the world today.”