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Faculty Book: Neil Smith

Neil Smith

The Endgame of Globalization
(Routledge, December 2004)

Smith, author of the award-winning American Empire (2003), offers an entirely novel account of America's century-long quest to create a new world order under the auspices of American globalism; he also discusses the reason why these objectives continually fall short. Most recently, the invasion of Iraq represents the "endgame" of America's decades-old effort to impose its vision of globalization on the world. Yet, while the war has ended Saddam Hussein's regime, it also points to another end—that of America's latest global project. Smith demonstrates that this is not the first time the United States has attempted to reshape the world in its own image, but actually the third.  After attempts by both the Wilson and FDR administrations, Smith marks the third moment—globalization—as beginning in the late 1970s, when the United States used its economic power to attempt to enforce a worldwide free-market orthodoxy tied to an ideal of liberal democracy. According to Smith, the effort is now failing for the same reasons the preceding attempts failed—a crippling yet hard-edged nationalism that surfaces and drives U.S. actions, despite America's self-perception as a champion of benign and obvious universal values. Smith is a distinguished professor of anthropology and earth and environmental sciences at The Graduate Center.

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Submitted on: DEC 30, 2004

Category: Anthropology, Earth and Environmental Sciences, Faculty Books