Foundations of the American Century: The Ford, Carnegie, and Rockefeller Foundations in the Rise of American Power

By Inderjeet Parmar

Inderjeet Parmar unearths the advanced interrelations, shared mindsets, and collaborative efforts of influential private and non-private businesses within the construction of yankee hegemony. targeting the involvement of the Ford, Rockefeller, and Carnegie foundations in U.S. international affairs, Parmar lines the transformation of the US from an "isolationist" state into the world's basically superpower, all within the identify of benevolent stewardship.

Parmar starts off within the Nineteen Twenties with the institution of those foundations and their approach of top-down, elitist, clinical giving, which targeted extra on handling social, political, and financial switch than on fixing glossy society's structural difficulties. Consulting infrequent files and different archival fabrics, he recounts how the yankee intellectuals, teachers, and coverage makers affiliated with those corporations institutionalized such elitism, which then bled into the equipment of U.S. overseas coverage and have become considered as the essence of modernity.

America was hoping to exchange Britain within the function of world hegemon and created the required political, ideological, army, and institutional ability to take action, but faraway from being goal, the Ford, Rockefeller, and Carnegie foundations usually complicated U.S. pursuits on the rate of alternative countries. Incorporating case reports of yankee philanthropy in Nigeria, Chile, and Indonesia, Parmar boldly exposes the information networks underwriting American dominance within the 20th century.

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In keeping with Hofstadter, the Europeans’ “scramble for Africa” within the Nineties was once considered with alarm via many American elites, fearing that the carve-up of the realm might exclude the USA from a percentage of the spoils. 15 Presidents McKinley (1897–1901) and Roosevelt (1901–1909) have been quite assertive, militarily defeating Spain in 1898, dealing with down German encroachments in Venezuela in 1902, more often than not imposing the Monroe Doctrine of 1823 (“America for the Americans”), and intervening in Latin the US because it perfect U. S. pursuits. As Paul Kennedy argues, in spite of the fact that, American coverage makers have been additionally extra energetic in worldwide affairs past the Western hemisphere: 2,500 American troops have been dispatched to “restore order” in China in 1900; Roosevelt acted as mediator within the Russo-Japanese battle of 1904–1905 (for which he received the Nobel Peace Prize) and insisted on American participation within the Algeciras convention in 1906 over the way forward for Morocco. sixteen Roosevelt was once an Anglo-Saxonist imperialist who believed that “backward” peoples wanted the tutelage of enhanced races. “More and more,” he argued in 1902, “the expanding interdependence and complexity of overseas political and fiscal relatives render it incumbent on all civilized and orderly powers to insist at the right policing of the area. ”17 Roosevelt was once no outlier yet used to be strongly consultant of a dominant tendency inside an rising East Coast international coverage elite. THE household CONTEXT in response to Hofstadter, the us was once in the midst of a “psychic main issue” through the start of the 20th century, at the very eve of the delivery of the Rockefeller and Carnegie foundations. 18 certainly, the big business matters headed through Andrew Carnegie and John Davison Rockefeller, Sr. and Jr. , have been either reason and symptom of that problem. there have been a number of points to the psychic hindrance led to by means of significant industrialization, mass immigration, and swift urbanization: first, large-scale protest pursuits around the country—Populism, violent moves and business unionism, in particular—fueling fears between elites that innovative trends have been at huge, “the specter… of drastic social convulsions”;19 moment, the focus of construction to such an volume as to gasoline fears that the times of open marketplace festival and chance have been over; 3rd, the remaining of the yankee frontier, the favourite trust that the relevant outlet for pissed off energies had disappeared; and fourth, the pervasive trust that corruption in enterprise, politics, and govt used to be rampant. All this signaled a thorough switch to the Victorian-era feel of order that prevailed in middle-class circles. One results of the psychic problem used to be, as famous above, America’s wish to extend past its frontiers: the “tonic of a overseas adventure,” as Theodore Roosevelt placed it, to unite the country and conquer its inner upheavals and convulsions. the opposite consequence used to be “an intensification of protest and humanitarian reform. Populism, utopianism, the increase of the Christian Social gospel, the transforming into highbrow curiosity in socialism, the social payment stream.

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