How to Hide an Empire: A History of the Greater United States

How to Hide an Empire: A History of the Greater United States

A pathbreaking history of the United States' overseas possessions and the true meaning of its empire

We are familiar with maps that outline all fifty states. And we are also familiar with the idea that the United States is an "empire," exercising power around the world. But what about the actual territories--the islands, atolls, and archipelagos--this country has governed and inhabited?

In How to Hide an Empire, Daniel Immerwahr tells the fascinating story of the United States outside the United States. In crackling, fast-paced prose, he reveals forgotten episodes that cast American history in a new light. We travel to the Guano Islands, where prospectors collected one of the nineteenth century's most valuable commodities, and the Philippines, site of the most destructive event on U.S. soil. In Puerto Rico, Immerwahr shows how U.S. doctors conducted grisly experiments they would never have conducted on the mainland and charts the emergence of independence fighters who would shoot up the U.S. Congress.

In the years after World War II, Immerwahr notes, the United States moved away from colonialism. Instead, it put innovations in electronics, transportation, and culture to use, devising a new sort of influence that did not require the control of space. Rich with absorbing vignettes, full of surprises, and driven by an original conception of what empire and globalization mean today, How to Hide an Empire is a major and compulsively readable work of history.

Title:How to Hide an Empire: A History of the Greater United States
Edition Language:English
ISBN:9780374172145

    How to Hide an Empire: A History of the Greater United States Reviews

  • Mehrsa

    Excellent. A must read. Seriously, go read it right now. I grew up in the shadow of the US empire so I've always understood that the US was an empire, but it did occur to me at some point after I immi...

  • Louise

    How many high school teachers in the US know how Guantanamo Bay came to be US territory? How many know that the Philippines was managed as a colony for 47 years? While I expect most know that Puerto R...

  • Michael Perkins

    This brand new book is a lucidly written, very absorbing account of imperial U.S. that the usual ignorant America First people don't want to hear. They're unwilling to own up to our mistakes, so are d...

  • Devyn

    I received this book from Goodreads."In the end, this book's main contribution is not archival, bringing to light some never-before-seen document. It's perspectival, seeing a familiar history differen...

  • William Harris

    I recently had the privilege of receiving an advanced copy of "How to Hide an Empire," by Daniel Immerwahr (courtesy of Farrar, Straus and Giroux). I am pleased to report that this book is one of the ...

  • thefourthvine

    Ever since I read The Not-Quite States of America: Dispatches from the Territories and Other Far-Flung Outposts of the USA, I’ve been looking for a book on the United States’s imperial possessions...

  • Esther Espeland

    Wow I’m HOT for this book! Fascinating content, essential reframing of US history, and very readable and funny! Audibly guffawed while reading! Gave me much to think abt! ...

  • Lynn

    This is a run don’t wait to read type of book. It’s dense with information but so readable. There was so much in this book that i didn’t know before or was exposed to a whole other viewpoint. It...

  • Carin

    Before the hurricane hit it last year, did you know Puerto Rico was a part of the United States? How many other US territories can you name? Just one or two? The US Virgin Islands are fairly easy beca...

  • Max

    Starts off stronger than it ends; the more abstract the empire gets, the less revelatory it is. But at least half of this book has some stunning thing on every page that we all should have learned in ...