US Foreign Policy in Context: National Ideology from the Founders to the Bush Doctrine, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

US Foreign Policy in Context

National Ideology from the Founders to the Bush Doctrine, 1st Edition

By Adam Quinn


230 pages

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This work blends strategic analysis of contemporary US foreign policy with long-term historical discussion, producing an important argument relevant to the debates surrounding both the merits of contemporary US foreign policy and the long-term trends at work in American political culture.

Rather than a detailed historical study of the Bush administration itself, the book seeks to locate Bush within the historical context of the US foreign policy tradition. It makes the case for nationally specific ideological factors as a driver of foreign policy and for importance of interaction between the domestic and the international in the emergence of national strategy.

The contemporary element focuses on critiquing the George W. Bush administration’s National Security Strategy, perceived by many as a radical and unwelcome ideological departure from past policy, and its broader foreign policy, concentrating especially on its embrace of liberal universalism and rejection of realism. This critique is supported by the cumulative argument, based upon the historical cases, seeking to explain American leaders’ persistent resistance to the prescriptions of realism. Quinn argues for some causal connection between historically evolved ideological constructions and the character of the nation’s more recent international strategy.

Providing a valuable addition to the field, this book will be of great interest to scholars in American politics, US foreign policy and US history.


"Quinn’s excellent and ambitious book… has significantly pushed our understandings of recent foreign policy by urging us to think more about the National Security Strategy of 2002 and Bush’s foreign policy as in keeping with the potent historical conceptions of internationalism that buttressed those policies. US Foreign Policy in Context should be applauded for crossing disciplinary boundaries and for analysing the crucial, complex, and (recently) understudied subject of national ideology. But most importantly, this book will be debated because it asks critical conceptual questions about the effects of long-term patterns of intellectual change on foreign policy and provides new analytical tools for discerning and locating the ideological and historical-intellectual forces that deeply informed the foreign policy of George W. Bush." - Christopher McKnight Nichols, University of Pennsylvania; Journal of Transatlantic Studies, 9:1

Table of Contents

1. Introduction 2. International Relations, History and National Ideology 3. The Founders' Era Consensus:'A Hercules in the Cradle 4. Theodore Roosevelt: 'The Nation that has Dared to be Great' 5. Woodrow Wilson: 'Conquest of the Spirits of Men' 6. The Truman administration:'In the Struggle for Men's Minds, the Conflict is world-wide' 7. The Bush administration:'A Balance of Power that Favours Freedom' Conclusion:the Bush Strategy and National Ideology

About the Author

Adam Quinn is a Lecturer in the Department of Politics and International Studies at University of Birmingham, He has previously published articles in International Studies Perspectives, Politics & Policy and Global Society.

About the Series

Routledge Studies in US Foreign Policy

This new series sets out to publish high quality works by leading and emerging scholars critically engaging with United States Foreign Policy. The series welcomes a variety of approaches to the subject and draws on scholarship from international relations, security studies, international political economy, foreign policy analysis and contemporary international history.

Subjects covered include the role of administrations and institutions, the media, think tanks, ideologues and intellectuals, elites, transnational corporations, public opinion, and pressure groups in shaping foreign policy, US relations with individual nations, with global regions and global institutions and America’s evolving strategic and military policies.

The series aims to provide a range of books – from individual research monographs and edited collections to textbooks and supplemental reading for scholars, researchers, policy analysts, and students.

Learn more…

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