Download America's Shadow: An Anatomy of Empire by William V. Spanos PDF

By William V. Spanos

A research of imperialism that stretches from historic Rome to the post-Cold battle global, this provocative paintings boldly revises our assumptions in regards to the family tree of the West. instead of finding its resource in classical Greece, William V. Spanos argues, we must always glance to historical Rome, which first articulated the tips that will develop into basic to the West's imperial venture. those founding rules, he claims, have knowledgeable the yankee nationwide id and its overseas coverage from its origins.

The Vietnam conflict is on the middle of this ebook. within the contradiction among the "free international" good judgment hired to justify U.S. intervention in Vietnam and the genocidal practices used to gain that common sense, Spanos unearths the end result of an imperialistic discourse attaining again to the colonizing reason of the Roman Empire. Spanos identifies the language of growth within the "white" metaphors in Western philosophical discourse because the colonization of Greek suggestion by means of the Romans. He indicates how those metaphors, and their function in metaphysical discourse, have lengthy been complicit within the violence of imperialism.

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Here it will suffice to say that both, like Hegel, invoke the idea of "comprehensive vision" in knowledge production in the name of "intellectual deliverance" (Arnold), but their articulation of its meaning clearly suggests that its real end is the willful spatialization and pacification of time and the difference it disseminates under the aegis of the imperial eye. But even the extension of this disclosure of the epistemological violence inhering in the reifying visualism of the philosophical discourse of the West to include literary production, indeed, language itself, is not adequate as a measure of the depth and scope of its imperial sway.

To highlight the complicity of the Western mind's hand with the literal hand (or its prosthetic extensions), this separation enables the management (from the Latin manus: "hand") and exploitation of the differential being it encounters. " It is also Heidegger's enabling thematization of this imperial Eurocentric violence against the alterity of being that explains his retrieval for thought of the nothing (the radically Other of Being) and of the dislocating or decentering anxiety of being-in-theworld.

33 In its disposition of language in the future/anterior mode, a mode oriented toward a totalized and final (aesthetic) peace, Virgil's founding end-oriented narrative structure ruthlessly obliterates or accommodates every thing but the "peak points" of "history" — not least the differential Asian "seductress," Dido,34 and the Greek Turnus. And in so doing, it precisely enacts the narrative structure of the racial destiny of the Roman people — the "seed" of Aeneas — and of their imperial disposition of the peripheral peoples of the world: the colonization of the extraterritorial Others in the benign name of the "at-homing" peace of the Pax Romana.

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