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America and the Americas: The United States in the Western Hemisphere…
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0820311049, Paperback)
"America is a hemisphere to itself."--Thomas Jefferson"As to an American system, we have it; we constitute the whole of it; there is no community of interests or of principles between North and South America."--John Quincy AdamsFrom its inception as the first democratic nation of the New World, the United States has envisioned, in the words of Jefferson, "a hemisphere to itself," united in the values and structures of republican government. At the same time, global political realities and economic ambitions as well as cultural dissimilarities have prompted many to assert, like Adams, that America is and ought to remain distinct.
In America and the Americas Lester D. Langley moves from the colonial era into the Reagan administration to provide an accessible, interpretive introduction to the history of United States relations with Latin America and the Caribbean. Discussing the formal structures and diplomatic postures underlying United States policy making, Langley examines as well the political, economic, and cultural currents that often have frustrated inter-American progress and accord. Langley cites the distinction, always clear below the Rio Grande, between the hemispheric dreams of America and the national interests of the United States. Drawn together in the text of the Monroe Doctrine, the twin motives of Anglo-Saxon America have shifted weight and changed interpretation through the course of history, engendering in Latin Americans responses ranging from respect and admiration to suspicion and contempt. Also frustrating to American policies, Langley shows, is the reality of Latin America, of a people whose values rest in the social rather than the political order, in spiritualism rather than materialism, whose hopes lie more in the equality of Pan Americanism than in the hemispheric strategy of the United States.
In the later decades of the twentieth century, the 2,000-mile border that separates the United States from the countries to the south has been a barrier between First and Third worlds, between cultures, and in many cases between economic philosophies and political policies. The inaugural work in a series dealing with relations between the United States and its neighbors, America and the Americas introduces the forces and issues that have shaped the interaction among individual nations across the boundaries of north and south.
(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 May 2011 02:34:37 -0400)
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