American Exceptionalism - American Exceptionalism *Is there...

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American Exceptionalism * Is there anything distinctly "American" about US Foreign Policy since 1945? *To what degree is American exceptionalism a useful concept in explaining US foreign policy? *Can US foreign polcy makers successfully sustain American hegemony in the 21st century? *Does American exceptionalism provide the ideological foundation for George W. Bush's foreign policy? *American interventionism in Latin America provides the template for US foreign policy in the 21st century. Discuss. *'America has a moral mandate to set the world aright.' Do you agree that this conviction has motivated US foreign policy since 1945? *How important is 'soft power' as an instrument of US foreign policy? *Compare and contrast the contribution made to American foreign policy by any TWO presidents since World War II. *'America acts internationally according to its own rules and accepts only partially and reluctantly rules made by other'. Discuss. *'What have been the main principles of US foreign policy since the end of the Cold War? *The U.S does not have interests, it has responsibilities' (Dean Rusk 1962). In the post-Cold War world are interests more important? -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- INTRO -Historical myths and images, both consciously and unconsciously, have played a far more significant role in US foreign policy than societies with a longer and more complex cultural heritage. -The past (American exceptionalism) has sustained U.S resolve in crises, and given it the self- confidence to tackle tasks which would have defeated most other nations. -A consciousness of being exceptional has had a profound impact on the evolution of US FP. * Bases of American Exceptionalism * 1) Geography- relative geographic isolation kept out of many euro conflicts, immune from big power rivalries; Us doesnt enter WWI until after 3 yrs, Great river system, most of land cultivatable soil unlike USSR, massive amounts of raw materials. 2) Morality- linked to Purtain/Calvinist beliefs. 3) Economic strength- U.S capitalism, identified with productivity (Ford large-scale production), by turn of 19th/20th century surpasses everyone. Dollar universal currency. 4) Military strength- half of worlds expenditure on defense. U.S self-sufficiency- never dependent on rest of world, behaves as though could get along perfectly well w/o rest of world. -Essential rightness of American values confirmed/enforced by fact U.S has been winner in the 3 ideological wars of the 20th century. * American Exceptionalism invoked by Politicians to sanction acts * --The 'past' offers not an ideology, as such, but a sense of purpose, which derives from one of several mythical histories to which the republic's politicians have constantly reached back in order to commune with the nation. -Elites makes appeal to the past to win public support for its actions.
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American Exceptionalism - American Exceptionalism *Is there...

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