May 3 | Racing the International: “American Empire”

May 3, 2017
4.30pm - 6pm
CSRPC, 5733 S University Ave

free and open to the public; rsvp

While the United States has long represented itself as an anti-imperial nation, its origins as an expanding settler colony, its forays into colonial rule abroad and its contemporary position as the hegemonic global power index the contours of an American empire. This panel will explore the relationship between domestic racial formations and imperialism abroad. 

A panel discussion featuring: Daniel Immerwahr (Northwestern University) Jeanne Morefield (Whitman College) and Aziz Rana (Cornell Law School)

Daniel Immerwahr is an assistant professor, specializing in twentieth-century U.S. history within a global context. His first book, Thinking Small: The United States and the Lure of Community Development (Harvard, 2014), discusses U.S. foreign aid and antipoverty strategies in the middle of the twentieth century. He is currently working on another book, How to Hide an Empire, about the United States and its peculiar relationship to overseas territory in the twentieth century. Besides U.S. foreign relations, he is also interested in intellectual history, the history of capitalism, and the methodological aspects of teaching and writing history. At Northwestern, he teaches courses on U.S. foreign relations, U.S. intellectual history, and global history.

Jeanne Morefield is Professor of Politics at Whitman College. Her scholarship works at the intersection of political theory, history, and international relations, examining a variety of topics including the relationship between the contemporary and historical rhetorics of imperialism and the conflict between democracy and sovereignty. Her publications include Empires Without Imperialism: Anglo-American Decline and the Politics of Deflection (Oxford University Press, 2014) and Covenants Without Swords: Idealist Liberalism and the Spirit of Empire (Princeton University Press, 2005) as well as numerous articles in journals such as History of Political Thought, Political Theory, and Theory and Event and chapters in edited volumes concerned with both political theory and the history of international and imperial thought. She is currently writing a book on the political theory of Edward Said. She teaches in the Encounters program at Whitman as well as Politics 122: Introduction to Modern European Political Theory, Politics 329: Theories of Empire, Politics 309: Liberalism and Its Discontents, and Politics 400: The Art and Architecture of Empire (with Mathew Reynolds in Art History).

Aziz Rana's research and teaching center on American constitutional law and political development, with a particular focus on how shifting notions of race, citizenship, and empire have shaped legal and political identity since the founding. His book, The Two Faces of American Freedom (Harvard University Press, 2010) situates the American experience within the global history of colonialism, examining the intertwined relationship in American constitutional practice between internal accounts of freedom and external projects of power and expansion. His current book manuscript explores the modern rise of constitutional veneration in the twentieth century -- especially against the backdrop of growing American global authority -- and how veneration has influenced the boundaries of popular politics. He has written essays and op-eds for such venues as The New York Times, The Nation,,, Jacobin, and N+1. He has recently published articles and chapter contributions (or has them forthcoming) with Yale University Press, California Law Review, and Texas Law Review among others. 



This venue is physically accessible and has a gender-neutral restroom. Please contact the CSRPC at 773.702.8063 with any questions or accommodation requests.

This series is organized by Professor Adom Getachew (Political Science) in partnership with the Center for the Study of Race, Politics, and Culture, with support from the Social Sciences Division, the Harris School for Public Policy, the Pozen Family Center for Human Rights, the Theory & Models Group, and the Chicago Center for Contemporary Theory (3CT) at the University of Chicago.