Faculty Book: Neil Smith
American Empire: Roosevelt's Geographer and the Prelude to Globalization
(University of California Press, 2003; 570 pp.)
Smith brings the politics—and the limits—of contemporary globalization sharply into focus in this dazzling and original work. Challenging the notion that the new American globalism was haphazardly constructed in a way that is "beyond geography," he argues that the "American Empire" was the result of a powerful geographical vision. The story follows the career of Isaiah Bowman (1878-1950), America's most famous geographer of the twentieth century, who worked closely with Woodrow Wilson and FDR to craft U.S. liberal foreign policy and create an American order to the global landscape. American Empire demonstrates the coherence of this globalization vision—one that dates back not to the 1980s but to 1919 and 1945. Neil Smith is distinguished professor of anthropology and geography and director of the Center for Place, Culture and Politics at The Graduate Center.
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Submitted on: MAR 19, 2003