After the ‘End of History’

American Foreign Policy and Its Thinkers: Part I - Introduction

October 12, 2020 After the 'End of History' Season 1 Episode 8
After the ‘End of History’
American Foreign Policy and Its Thinkers: Part I - Introduction
Chapters
After the ‘End of History’
American Foreign Policy and Its Thinkers: Part I - Introduction
Oct 12, 2020 Season 1 Episode 8
After the 'End of History'

In our eighth episode, we introduce the work and thought of Perry Anderson, the leading intellectual figure behind the New Left Review and author of several modern classics of Marxist political thought. We've chosen to dedicate the next few episodes of the podcast to American Foreign Policy and Its Thinkers to discuss how his historical materialist understanding of the long-term trajectory of capitalism and the interstate system frames his perspective on America's rise to global hegemony. We’re joined by our friend Gopal to help draw out the nuances and broader theoretical context of this challenging but rewarding text. 

Part I includes a brief introduction to Anderson's work, contextualizing American Foreign Policy within his better known works, such as Lineages of the Absolute State and Passages from Antiquity to Feudalism. We also share some thoughts on how his work has impacted our own critical attitudes toward American foreign policy, particularly the "regnant liberalism" that has repeatedly justified imperialist interventions abroad. (See "Arms and Rights" in NLR 31.)

Finally, we begin our reconstruction of the book's main topics with a focus on the Preface and Introduction to Imperium, the work's first of two parts (the second being Consilium). Here Anderson lays out what distinguishes his work from other historical scholarship, particularly in its chronological sweep and the interrelation between ("First World") capitalist states both before and after the establishment of American supremacy within the capitalist system.

Jason King kindly provides the music that you hear in After the 'End of History.' You can find more of his work on Soundcloud

Show Notes

In our eighth episode, we introduce the work and thought of Perry Anderson, the leading intellectual figure behind the New Left Review and author of several modern classics of Marxist political thought. We've chosen to dedicate the next few episodes of the podcast to American Foreign Policy and Its Thinkers to discuss how his historical materialist understanding of the long-term trajectory of capitalism and the interstate system frames his perspective on America's rise to global hegemony. We’re joined by our friend Gopal to help draw out the nuances and broader theoretical context of this challenging but rewarding text. 

Part I includes a brief introduction to Anderson's work, contextualizing American Foreign Policy within his better known works, such as Lineages of the Absolute State and Passages from Antiquity to Feudalism. We also share some thoughts on how his work has impacted our own critical attitudes toward American foreign policy, particularly the "regnant liberalism" that has repeatedly justified imperialist interventions abroad. (See "Arms and Rights" in NLR 31.)

Finally, we begin our reconstruction of the book's main topics with a focus on the Preface and Introduction to Imperium, the work's first of two parts (the second being Consilium). Here Anderson lays out what distinguishes his work from other historical scholarship, particularly in its chronological sweep and the interrelation between ("First World") capitalist states both before and after the establishment of American supremacy within the capitalist system.

Jason King kindly provides the music that you hear in After the 'End of History.' You can find more of his work on Soundcloud