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German and United States Colonialism in a Connected World

Entangled Empires

Palgrave Macmillan

Editors:

  • Explores the entangled, interconnected histories of German and United States colonialism

  • Highlights the many similarities between these two empires, resulting from the global contexts in which they were situated and bound together

  • Brings together a distinguished range of scholars whose chapters organized into four themes: space, cultures, policies and violence

Part of the book series: Cambridge Imperial and Post-Colonial Studies (CIPCSS)

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  • ISBN: 978-3-030-53206-2
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Softcover Book USD 139.99
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Table of contents (15 chapters)

  1. Front Matter

    Pages i-xx
  2. Introduction: Relational Empires

    • Janne Lahti
    Pages 1-14Open Access
  3. Afterwords

    1. Front Matter

      Pages 299-299
    2. Empires of Comparison

      • Andrew Zimmerman
      Pages 301-306

About this book

This book contributes to global history by examining the connected histories of German and United States colonial empires from the early nineteenth century to the Nazi era. It looks at multiple and multidirectional flows, transfers, and circulations of ideas, people, and practices as Germany and the US were embedded in, and created by, an interconnected world of empires. This relationship was not exceptional, but emblematic of the diverse entanglements that created colonial globality.

Colonial entanglements between Germany and the United States took on many forms, but these shared and intersecting histories have been underanalyzed. Traditionally, Germany and the United States have been understood to have taken, respectively, an authoritarian and liberal path into modernity. But there is no neat dichotomy, as the contributors to this book illustrate. There are many more similarities than have previously been appreciated – and they are the result of multilayered entanglements made visible via conquest, settler societies, racialization, and rule of difference. Building on present historiographies of empires, colonialism, and globalization, this book introduces new analytical possibilities for examining these two relatively understudied empires alongside each other, as well as at their intersections.

Chapter 1 is available open access under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License via link.springer.com.

Keywords

  • Transnational history
  • Global history
  • Nineteenth century
  • Twentieth century
  • Globalization
  • Authoritarian regime
  • Liberalism
  • Modernity
  • Ethnic networks
  • Market and capital
  • Nationalism
  • Expansionism

Reviews

“This is a fine volume that promises to create productive discussions among historians and in the classroom. It clearly demonstrates the global, transnational nature of imperialism and empire by offering comparative analyses of labour recruitment practices, colonial settlements, removal and assimilation policies towards indigenous peoples, and the agents of colonial policies.” (Silke Hackenesch, German Historical Institute London Bulletin, Vol. 44 (1), May, 2022)
​“Imperial expansion was at its core a nationalist project. Yet, as this important book demonstrates, it was also a project embedded in new global connections. Imperial powers watched one another, learned from one another and competed with one another. As a latecomer to colonialism, Germany in particular became an eagle-eyed observer of its competitors—and no colonial experience seemed more relevant to German imperialists than that of the United States. As historians have revaluated American expansion and German colonialism, these essays provide an eye-opening analysis of the connections between them.” (Sven Beckert, Harvard University)

“Janne Lahti brings together a fine ensemble of international scholars to look at one of the currently most rewarding fields in imperial history, the history of transimperial entanglements. The volume specifically engages with US-German imperial relations and throws new light on their great historical significance. Lahti's skillful and gripping introduction immediately draws the reader into the subject matter. His real feat, however, lies in the composition of the contributions that covers broad historical ground and at the same time provides in-depth empirical analysis. A timely and stimulating book at the interface of imperial and global history.” (Roland Wenzlhuemer, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München)

“This outstanding collection of essays on the many entanglements of Germany and the United States in the age of empire showcases a highly dynamic research field of younger and established scholars that is breaking down the barriers and stale conventions that have long hindered a full understanding of global competitive colonialism. By also challenging the national exceptionalism that has long contained both American and German history, the essays are sure to spark lively debate that will lead to productive new avenues of research.” (Erik Grimmer-Solem, Wesleyan University) 

Entangled Empires presents global and transnational scholarship at their finest. Full of original research, arresting insights, and powerful case studies, the essays collected here decentre US and German colonialism in compelling ways. In crisp and elegant prose the authors in this superb collection show as never before how the United States and German imperial formations were entangled by flows of knowledge, people, and strategies of colonial domination, and developed relationally with one another. This carefully curated volume showcases how the signature methods of transnational and global history – connected, comparative, and collaborative – offers vital new understandings on imperial formation and the imperial origins of contemporary globality” (Stephen Tuffnell, St Peter’s College, University of Oxford) 

“This important collection offers a wealth of thought-provoking essays that open up a long overdue discussion about the myriad ways that U.S. and German colonialism interacted with one another across the long nineteenth century.  After reading German and United States Colonialism in a Connected World, it will be impossible to think about U.S. or German history—or, indeed, global history—the same way ever again.” (Karl Jacoby, Columbia University) 

“The compelling essays in this rich, wide-ranging volume vividly demonstrate the value of approaching histories of modern colonialism as globally entangled. Focusing on the ways Germans’ perceptions of U. S. empire—as inspiration and model, rival and threat—shaped their understandings of Germany as nation, empire and world power, the essays reveal myriad ways that German visions of settler-colonial rule, racialized power and colonial violence crossed national and imperial boundaries.” (Paul Kramer, Vanderbilt University)

Editors and Affiliations

  • Department of Philosophy, History and Art, University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland

    Janne Lahti

About the editor

Janne Lahti works as an Academy of Finland Research Fellow at the University of Helsinki, Finland. He specializes in global and transnational histories of settler colonialism, borderlands, the American West, Imperial Germany, and Nordic colonialism. 


Bibliographic Information

Buying options

eBook USD 109.00
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • ISBN: 978-3-030-53206-2
  • Instant PDF download
  • Readable on all devices
  • Own it forever
  • Exclusive offer for individuals only
  • Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout
Softcover Book USD 139.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
Hardcover Book USD 139.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)