American Imperialism Essay

American Imperialism Essay

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To use the title ‘Transnational American’ (Grewal, 2005) might be more politically correct than American imperialism but I contend that one is in fact an agent of the other. The two readings for this week converge around the discussion of transnationalism and neoliberalism although in slightly different ways. Grewal (2005) discusses transnationalism in relation to the United States and its cultural, social, political and economic influence on other nation-states specifically through technologies, biopolitics and geopolitics. Grewal presents interesting arguments to support the view that the construction of human rights activism since the 1960’s was a geopolitical strategy used by the United States to extend its imperialist grasp on the outside world. Grewal (2005) posits that the development of the feminist and women’s rights movements were born out of human rights discourse that quickly became “transnational instruments of technologies of governmentality, creating and applying knowledges and techniques that promote welfare and security, rather than just the rights of populations” (Grewal 2005:122).
The birth of Nongovernmental Organization (NGO) came out of a desire to “move women [vulnerable populations] from the margins to the center by questioning the most fundamental concepts of our social order so that they take better account of women’s lives” (Grewal 2005:126). In the process human rights issues became wedded to women’s rights, social justice and later on to development. NGOs at the time of its inception were seen as politically autonomous entity that would intervene “to ensure the welfare of female populations, the inefficiency of the state, and its ideology of patriarchy” (Grewal 2005:127). But cultural, socio-political...


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...loitation, the US maintains its embargo on Cuba and continues to police movements across its borders; only the future knows how the current anti-immigration sentiments might unfold and materialize.
Space does not permit an elaborate discussion about the politics of the United Nations, the World Bank or the IMF, but as a parenthetical note, these are also examples of an imperial or should I say transnational apparatuses taken advantage of the by the United States. In the final analysis, I concur with Comaroff and Comaroff (2001) that “relationship between the nation-state and millennial capitalism…is not synonymous with globalism, although globalization is and inherent part of it” but I would add more specifically that globalization like its predecessor colonalization, imperialization and now neoliberalism is a capitalist apparatus (Comaroff & Comaroff, 2001:34)

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