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---------------- H-Diplo Roundtable Review www.h-net.org/~diplo/roundtables Volume XIV, No. 26 (2013) 1 April 2013 ---------------- Copyright (c) 2013 H-Net: Humanities and Social Sciences Online. H-Net permits the redistribution and reprinting of this work for non-profit, educational purposes, with full and accurate attribution to the author(s), web location, date of publication, H-Diplo, and H-Net: Humanities & Social Sciences Online. For other uses, contact the H-Diplo editorial staff at firstname.lastname@example.org. ---------------- Roundtable Editors: Thomas Maddux and Diane Labrosse Roundtable Web/Production Editor: George Fujii Commissioned for H-Diplo by Thomas Maddux Introduction by Peter S. Onuf Eliga H. Gould. Among the Powers of the Earth: The American Revolution and the Making of a New World Empire. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2012. ISBN: 9780674046085 (hardcover, $45.00/£33.95/€40.50). Stable URL: http://www.h-net.org/~diplo/roundtables/PDF/Roundtable-XIV-26.pdf ---------------- Contents Introduction by Peter S. Onuf, University of Virginia 2 Review by James E. Lewis Jr., Kalamazoo College 6 Review by James Sidbury, Rice University 9 Review by Chris Tudda, Office of the Historian, Department of State 13 Review by William Earl Weeks, San Diego State University 17 Author's Response by Eliga Gould, University of New Hampshire 22 ---------------- Introduction by Peter S. Onuf, University of Virginia Eliga Gould's Among the Powers of the Earth offers a fresh interpretation of the international history of the American Revolution. Representing a variety of interpretative perspectives, the reviewers in this roundtable agree with James Lewis that Gould "sheds new light on the American founding and on the relationship between the new United States and the law of nations." Gould's major contribution is to situate the Revolutionary narrative in the geopolitical context of the European states' system from the Seven Years War to the end of the Napoleonic Wars and the Peace of Ghent. The struggle for independence did not result from the dawning consciousness of a new 'people' who came to recognize their genius for self-government and their manifest destiny for world domination. Quite to the contrary, recognition could only come from the "powers of the earth." Nationhood did not mark a coming of age, with 'Americans' turning away from Europe, but was instead the unintended consequence of British failure to reform and consolidate rule over their far-flung North American possessions after the 1763 Peace of Paris. The new United States was a fragment of the failed British Empire: when they failed to negotiate favorable terms for themselves within the empire, patriot leaders sought to participate directly and independently in the European diplomatic and commercial system. To do so, Americans had to appear recognizable as a nation, or 'treaty-worthy,' to their European counterparts. American national identity therefore was not self-generated, but instead was the function of a reluctant, ad hoc mobilization against the metropolis that wartime allies recognized and the British themselves finally acknowledged in 1783. James Sidbury reads Among the Powers of the Earth as an "attempt to dismantle exceptionalism." If British efforts "to incorporate the colonies into Europe's framework of international law" after the Seven Years War led to resistance and revolution, independence required "U.S. inclusion within that framework." Americans became more European, not less, as they broke from the Empire. Imposing order across their frontiers, the American founders "achieved one of the central aims of Great Britain's 'Pax Britannica.'" Patriots who portrayed themselves as enemies of imperial despotism thus, ironically, served as "agents...of European imperial ambition." The law of nations codified the progress of increasingly lawful relations among "civilized" states, James Lewis writes, but "offered few protections for 'stateless' people." Despite jurists' misgivings about slavery, Chris Tudda concludes, "adherence to this legal tradition cemented the new nation's commitment to slave-owning and the creation of a continental empire during the nineteenth century." Claims to American exceptionalism echo patriots' insistence that independence inaugurated a new post-imperial era when the rights of man were finally recognized and eventually would be fully implemented. Gould's book deflates such claims by emphasizing continuities across regime change: in crucial ways, the new federal republic perpetuated the old empire, both in the political and legal autonomy settler societies enjoyed and in their expropriation of natives' land and exploitation of enslaved labor.1 Our reviewers all applaud Gould's broad interpretative framework, joining William Earl Weeks in hailing Among the Powers of the Earth as "an important step in an apparent paradigm shift away from the notion of the early U.S. as an isolated, virtuous republic mostly intent on minding its own business to one which situates the emergence of the U.S. amid the larger context of hemispheric, oceanic, and European affairs." But "the apparent paradigm shift" leaves some room for controversy. Weeks takes a strong view of empire, emphasizing "the extent to which Americans imposed their will on Spanish, French, and Native American rivals" and discounting the restraints of geopolitics and law; he challenges Gould's contention that "Americans could only make the history that others allowed them to" (218). Lewis wonders if Gould might be overstating American enthusiasm for inclusion in the European state system and its public law. Perhaps, he suggests, Americans were more interested in creating "a space in, but not of, the European diplomatic system." Invoking an older literature in early American diplomacy that Gould generally neglects, Lewis reminds us that American statesmen sometimes pursued a distinctive-if not "exceptionalist"-course that betrayed their ambivalence about European legal and diplomatic norms. Lewis's "empire" is weaker than Weeks's, messier and more contingent, more "American" in its deviations from European standards. In contrasting ways, Weeks and Lewis both illuminate the problematic character of a legal regime that simultaneously-and imperfectly-authorized and regulated European expansion and domination of the extra-European world. In contemporary usage we tend to distinguish 'nations' and 'empires,' but Gould's book confounds the distinction. Nations make plausible claims to legitimacy and thus to recognition by other nations, and the Americans liked to think that their self-created republican regime set a new high standard for the world. But legitimacy, or treaty-worthiness, also and primarily depended on a capacity to enforce rule, to govern more or less willing subjects. That American subject-cum-citizens supposedly governed themselves obscured or mystified rule in long-settled, "civilized" regions, even as it by contrast accentuated the imposition of force on barbarous and unruly subjects on the frontiers of their republican empire-or on enslaved plantation laborers. Sidbury captures this doubleness: "liberty for some entailed slavery or dispossession for others." For neo-progressive critics, this is the formula for an inverted exceptionalism: 'imperialist' Americans have failed to live up to their exalted founding principles. But Gould has little patience for any sort of exceptionalism, either from the celebratory right or the revisionist left. The Revolutionary founders did not, as Sidbury puts it, "conspire to protect slavery or to commit genocide on Native Americans." Instead, "they strove to build a nation whose standing in international law was unexceptional, and then to further the interests of that new nation." Gould's transnational approach, deeply grounded in his previous work on British attitudes toward the American Revolution, enables students of the founding to escape the tunnel vision of national-and nationalist-historiography.2 Early American history makes much more sense when properly situated in its contemporary global context and disentangled from exceptionalist mythologies. Gould helps show the way toward a more sophisticated understanding of the new nation's imperial origins and its ongoing relationship with a European state system that Britain would long dominate.3 Not coincidentally, American statesmen and jurists would join their British counterparts in playing a leading role in elaborating the precepts and practices of international law, even as the interests of these two great imperial nations converged over the long nineteenth century. Among the Powers of the Earth is indeed, as Tudda and his fellow reviewers conclude, "an important and insightful book," highly recommended to diplomatic historians-and to all historians interested in the American founding. Participants: Eliga Gould is Professor of History at the University of New Hampshire, where he chairs the History Department. He is currently writing a book entitled The World of the American Revolution Peter S. Onuf, Senior Research Fellow, Robert H. Smith International Center for Jefferson Studies (Monticello) and Thomas Jefferson Foundation Professor Emeritus, University of Virginia, is the co-author (with Nicholas G. Onuf) of Federal Union, Modern World: The Law of Nations in an Age of Revolutions, 1776-1814 (1993) and Nations, Markets, and War: Modern History and the American Civil War (2006). He is currently writing an intellectual biography of Thomas Jefferson with Annette Gordon-Reed. James E. Lewis Jr. is an associate professor of history at Kalamazoo College. He has published The American Union and the Problem of Neighborhood: The United States and the Collapse of the Spanish Empire, 1783-1829 (1998), John Quincy Adams: Policymaker for the Union (2001), and The Louisiana Purchase: Jefferson's Noble Bargain? (2003), and was the contributing editor for Chapter 5 of Robert L. Beisner, ed., Guide to American Foreign Relations Since 1600 (2003). He is currently completing a study of the Burr Conspiracy. James Sidbury is the Andrew W. Mellon Distinguished Professor of the Humanities in the Department of History at Rice University. He is a historian of race and slavery in the Eighteenth Century British Atlantic, the author of Becoming African in America: Race and Nation in the Early Black Atlantic and is working on a history of race formation among African Americans, European Americans, and Native Americans in the age of the American Revolution. Chris Tudda is a Historian in the Declassification and Publishing Division in the Office of the Historian, Department of State, where he declassifies manuscripts for the Foreign Relations of the United States series. He earned a B.A. from the University of Vermont in 1987 and the Ph.D. from American University in 2002. He is the author of The Truth is our Weapon: The Rhetorical Diplomacy of Dwight D. Eisenhower and John Foster Dulles (Louisiana State University Press, 2006) and A Cold War Turning Point: Nixon and China, 1969-1972 (Louisiana State University Press, 2012). William Earl Weeks received his Ph.D. at the University of California, San Diego in 1986 and specializes in nineteenth-century U.S. History at San Diego State University. He is the author of John Quincy Adams and American Global Empire (Lexington: University Press of Kentucky, 1992), Building the Continental Empire: American Expansion from the Revolution to Civil War (1996) and is the author of Dimensions of the Early American Empire, 1754-1865, Cambridge University Press, December 2012. ---------------- Review by James E. Lewis Jr., Kalamazoo College As Elijah H. Gould shows in his new work, when the members of the Second Continental Congress declared the independence of the United States and announced its claim "to assume among the Powers of the earth[ a] separate and equal station," they acted with a clear understanding of what that new station would both permit and require, at home and abroad. This understanding derived not only from their reading of the leading scholars of the law of nations, but also from their experiences in a trans-Atlantic competition of empires. They understood that their "separate and equal station" would allow them to seek the trade and alliances that might enable them to establish their independence. It would also solidify the new government's claim to govern those within its borders as it saw fit. At the same time, they understood that a "separate and equal station" within the community of nations would set limits on the means that they might use to win their independence and to secure their borders. And it would demand that the new government (or governments) enjoy sufficient power and authority internally to compel adherence to the law of nations on the part of its (or their) citizens. In Among the Powers of the Earth: The American Revolution and the Making of a New World Empire, Gould situates the founding of the United States within the context of the evolving law of nations, particularly as applied to the periphery of the Atlantic world. One effect of this change of context is to extend the founding moment beyond the 1770s and 1780s in both directions. Gould shows a real continuity between the new nation and its imperial antecedent in this respect. He locates the French and Indian War and the ensuing land, tax, and defense policies within a British effort to bring more of North America, including much of the cis-Mississippi backcountry, within the domain of the law of nations. The new United States retained both the goal of establishing more authority over the peoples of the trans-Appalachian West and the recognition that the requisite control over western lands (in terms of purchase and resale) necessitated a larger army, higher taxes, and increased central authority. Gould also argues that the project of achieving a "separate and equal station" extended decades beyond the signing of the treaties that marked the formal recognition of American independence by the various powers of Europe. It took the return of peace in Europe following the Napoleonic Wars and a series of diplomatic initiatives on the part of the United States--including the Transcontinental Treaty, the recognition of the Latin American nations, and the Monroe Doctrine--to bring the new nation the full benefits of a truly trans-Atlantic law of nations. Embedding the founding of the United States in the context of the evolving law of nations also provides Gould with a new way of integrating Indians and slaves into the story. With regard to the native peoples of North America, the law of nations had long accommodated not just the suppression of their governments, eradication of their cultures, and possession of their lands, but even violations of the rules of civilized warfare during conflicts with them. With rare exceptions, it provided ample cover for the full range of the new nation's Indian policies--the civilization program, the removal treaties, the brutal warfare. In the same way, before the mid-1770s, the law of nations had posed few challenges to either the ownership of slaves within individual countries (or colonies) or the trans-Atlantic trade that made it possible. After American independence, the law of nations helped to secure domestic slavery against an emerging European abolitionism, even as it provided ways to restrict an international slave trade that most Americans hoped to end. As Gould shows, in the case of both slaves and Indians, the law of nations offered few protections for "stateless" people. Most importantly, locating the founding in the context of the law of nations provides new insights into the convoluted and conflicted process of establishing state and federal governments. Revolutionary Americans were seeking not merely to balance their republican and liberal ideals, Gould argues, but also to erect governments that would be seen as "treaty-worthy" by the powers of Europe (11). "Because Americans were founding a nation among nations," he shows, "they were doing so, at least in part, on someone else's terms" (2). They had "to conform to European norms and expectations" in order to win recognition from and rights within the European states system; as a result, "the revolution represented, on a rather elemental level, an attempt to remake the former colonies in Europe's image" (3). This imperative required a long series of measures to centralize power and authority and to extend control over the citizens and other denizens of the new nation, even in the backcountry and at sea. Gould's understanding of the founding of the nation and its aftermath builds upon two decades of scholarship on the intertwined domestic and foreign policy decisions of the first generation of American policymakers. The works of David Hendrickson, Leonard Sadosky, J. C. A. Stagg, myself, and, especially, Peter (and Nicholas) Onuf on the importance of union, the securing of borders, and the concern with neighbors undergird Gould's analysis.1 Only rarely, however, does Gould engage with earlier scholarship on this period. The works of Felix Gilbert, Robert Davis, James Hutson, and, especially, Frederick Marks appear infrequently, if ever, in Gould's notes.2 The relative recentness of Gould's secondary reading--most of his citations, regardless of topic, are to books, essays, and articles from the last fifteen years--is, perhaps, not especially important in and of itself. But it points to a larger issue. In important ways, much of this book embodies a British rather than an American perspective on these events and issues. Given Gould's previous scholarship, this fact is probably not surprising. But there is nothing in the title, the dust-jacket description, the blurbs, or even the introduction to suggest this perspective. Instead, Gould explicitly states in the introduction that "the following pages tell the story of this process as Americans understood and experienced it" (4-5, emphasis added). Yet, he says very little about the aggressive American efforts to win diplomatic recognition during the Revolution, what John Adams called "militia diplomacy". Nor does Gould discuss American discomfort with the idea of extensive diplomatic engagement with Europe, as evidenced in decisions to limit the number of diplomats abroad and restrict them to the ministerial grade. Nor does he examine American attempts to create a space in, but not of, the European diplomatic system, by insisting, for example, upon wearing 'republican' dress at European courts. All of these decisions emerged from American engagement with the law of nations and the European states' system in the decades covered by Gould's book; yet, they find little or no place in it. His choices about what topics to include and exclude may reflect a tendency to draw from European, usually British, primary sources as often as American ones. The primary research is both wide ranging and extensive. But Gould is as likely to quote an English document or pamphlet as something from the extensive collections of public documents and personal correspondence from this period that have been assembled and published under the auspices of the National Historical Publications and Records Commission. At times, moreover, quotes that appear (from the structure of the sentence) to come from American policymakers actually come from English writers (see, for example, the sentence beginning "During the Quasi-War . . .," 202). It is certainly Gould's prerogative as the author to write the book that he wants to write. And it is equally certain that his perspective sheds new light on the American founding and on the relationship between the new United States and the law of nations. It is far less certain, to my mind, that Gould has conveyed "the story of this process as Americans understood and experienced it." Among the Powers of the Earth makes significant contributions to our understanding of this period and should be widely read. But there is still room for a work that integrates Gould's analysis with the issues and concerns that were described by an earlier generation of diplomatic historians. ---------------- Review by James Sidbury, Rice University I sat down to read Eliga Gould's new book while listening to yet another round of presidential candidates labor to establish allegiance to America's great secular orthodoxy-American Exceptionalism-and to cast their opponents either implicitly or explicitly as heretics to that faith. All sides hold the United States of America to have been created by exceptionally wise, public-spirited and far-sighted Founding Fathers. Some claim that they were divinely inspired. All believe that these Founders recognized the need to escape from the tawdry and corrupting influences of European power politics and to create an exceptionally innocent nation founded upon liberty. All see the United States having exceptional rights and responsibilities in the world, rights and responsibilities that were rooted in the nation's birth in a struggle against European imperialism. Gould's book takes exception to that story of the founding, and by implication to assumptions about American virtue and innocence. There are, of course, distinguished and deep strains of scholarship that seek to upend the vision of American exceptionalism that holds such sway in the broader culture. Many critical scholars accept, however, the assumptions of those whose claims they seek to revise, emphasizing the libertarian impulses of the Revolution and the progressive forces those impulses unleashed, but insisting that the beneficial effects of the Revolution were undercut by the exclusion of different groups-especially African Americans, Native Americans and women. Such critiques sometimes refer to slavery as America's original sin, or to racism as America's tragic flaw, or to patriarchy as the not-very-hidden inequity in a nation that claims 'all men are created equal' while beatifying its 'Founding Fathers.' Gould's book sympathizes with these perspectives, but his attempt to dismantle exceptionalism rests on something other than the founding generation's failures to live up to the fullest meaning of its ideals. Turning his attention to the realm of the law of nations, he sees the founders in a different light. Rather than an escape from Europe, Gould sees the American Revolution and the struggles to build the new nation during the period of the Early Republic as battles to integrate the United States into the European system of nations; the founding generation sought to create a "treaty-worthy" power, and in doing so to incorporate North America-at first only the eastern portions, but eventually all of it-into the 'civilized' western legal system. The founders, in Gould's telling, are better seen as agents than as enemies of European imperial ambition. Gould makes this case without altering the standard chronology within which most historians understand the Revolution. He sees the Seven Years War as a turning point that created tensions that the British Imperial Constitution found difficult to contain. He traces the way those tensions erupted in the movement of thirteen of Great Britain's mainland American colonies for independence; he examines the different challenges that arose both during and after the War for those who sought to build a single nation out of those thirteen states. He recounts the way the new nation found its footing during its first fifty years, culminating in its establishment of a secure hold on the eastern portion of North America between the Great Lakes and the Rio Grande during and in the wake of the War of 1812. If, however, the broad chronological outlines of Gould's story are familiar, his focus on the law of nations produces a narrative that parts ways with conventional interpretations. In Gould's eyes, the key to the importance of the Seven Years War lies not simply in the removal of the French threat to the thirteen colonies, or in the enormous national debt that Great Britain acquired in the course of the War, though both matter. The key is the recognition by the metropole that the Americas had become too integrated into European economies and politics for neglect to remain a viable imperial strategy. By mid-century, what happened in the Americas could no longer be counted on to remain in the Americas, so England could not risk allowing its colonies such free rein in the way they dealt either with Old World peoples living in American territory claimed by other European powers or with Native Americans. This inspired Parliament's attempts to control western expansion, to regulate trade more effectively, and to raise the taxes necessary to pay for these imperial innovations. For Gould, the "American Revolution had its origins, not in the growing distinctiveness of the colonies . . . or their sense of being places apart from Britain, but in the bonds that tied them as never before to Europe's diplomatic republic." (42) There are a number of ironies in this interpretation of the Revolution's origins. The Founding Fathers responded to Britain's desire to incorporate the colonies into Europe's framework of international law by seeking independence, but they spent much of the rest of their political careers struggling to establish their new nation's claim to the respectability with which they could earn U.S. inclusion within that framework. They won both struggles: by the time James Monroe-notwithstanding Minnesota Congresswoman Michelle Bachman's revisionism during the recent Republican presidential primaries in the United States, the last President with a claim to 'Founding Father' status-completed his second term, the United States was at peace with Europe and in secure possession, at least in the eyes of Europeans, of the entire Eastern seaboard and much of the Great Plains. From Gould's perspective, the founding generation had achieved one of the central aims of Great Britain's 'Pax Britannica,' but the founders did so at the cost of much higher taxes than would have been required had they, like Britons living north of the Great Lakes, chosen to remain within the British Empire. In the process, the founding generation had built an imperial nation state that was committed to continuing England's two-century old expansion into North America, albeit under the aegis of a new national banner. If anything, the change exacerbated the costs of European expansion. Native Americans and enslaved African Americans play important and distinct roles in Gould's interpretation of the United States' battles for treaty-worthy status. He reads the famous Somerset decision, sometimes oversimplified as having outlawed slavery in England, as being an ironic victory for American slaveholders. Lord Mansfield's decision in the case moved slavery beyond the jurisdiction of the law of nations by defining it as the product of local positive law. This created a precedent that would carry over from the colonial into the national period to grant each state the power to establish its own laws regulating human bondage, laws that would not be subject to international or, more importantly, federal oversight. These interesting parallels between the law of slavery within the British empire and the law of slavery in the United States are, no doubt, significant, though they may have not have had enormous influence on the development of slavery in the United States. It is almost as difficult to imagine the states south of Maryland agreeing to a union that threatened slavery within their borders as it is to imagine Mansfield ruling that the absence of positive law enforcing slavery in London overruled the colonial slave codes that had been passed in the Americas. The Somerset decision recognized slavery's anomalous standing in the empire and took an important step toward enshrining that in British law, but, as Gould makes clear, it did not create it. That anomalous status did, however, influence the struggles between the United States and Great Britain over the enforcement of the Treaty of Paris that ended the Revolutionary War: Americans sought compensation for slaves who served with and were granted freedom by the British Army, and they used Britain's refusal to grant such compensation as an excuse to ignore other parts of the Treaty. It was probably predictable that the British would respond to Americans' failure to enforce some articles of the Treaty by refusing to treat with the new nation regarding other issues-including commercial access to ports in the British Caribbean and the arming of Native Americans-that were important to the United States. Only the combination of a more powerful union, which resulted from the ratification of Constitution of 1787, and Great Britain's desire for peace with the United States during the wars of the French Revolution led England to set aside grievances dating back to 1783 and negotiate Jay's Treaty in 1794. The new nation's treaty-worthiness would be cemented with the Treaty of Ghent, which ended the War of 1812, a development that Gould argues "worked almost entirely to the advantage of the Union's slaveholding citizens" (177). If, however, the United States was treaty-worthy by 1815, it was during the aftermath of the War of 1812 that the new nation arrived as a real imperial power. Having settled the most important differences with Great Britain, both regional and national leaders in the United States turned to strengthening their hold on land Britain recognized as belonging to the new nation. This required that they firmly (and bloodily) establish sovereignty over land claimed by different native peoples. Establishing such claims in the southeast came to mean transgressing Spain's claims to Florida and, ultimately, taking Florida from those with more legitimate claims-first the Spanish, and then, much more importantly, the Seminoles and other native peoples. Gould shows this story to be as complicated in the realm of international relations as it was in the realm of race relations. Andrew Jackson's aggression could and did skirt, and sometimes violate, the law of nations, and it did so in ways that antagonized both the British and the Spanish. Gould explains and unpacks these antagonisms, but he also shows that the bigger story is the degree to which the United States' imperial ambitions can be seen to have brought to fruition Britain's larger goals in the wake of the Seven Years War. The increasingly assertive United States brought an end to the threat that events in America could endanger European peace, and it did that in two ways. First, it maintained "peaceful treaty relations with Europe's great powers" (212-13). Second, it integrated the enormous and lush lands of North America into the European system of nations, and, not coincidentally, into an Atlantic economic sphere that was dominated by Europe. Enslaved African Americans and displaced Native Americans would pay the price for these changes. They increasingly found themselves friendless both in the face of the intensifying pace of exploitation that blacks faced on the cotton frontier, and in white Americans' increasing disregard for Indians' claims to their ancestral lands. In Gould's words, "Indians and African Americans, in particular, had reason to view the United States' increasingly amicable relations with Europe after 1815 as a mixed blessing" (214). War may be so inherently brutal that peace is always a blessing, but in this case, for those folks, the blessing may have been hard to identify within the mix. Some will no doubt feel that Gould's focus on U.S. relations with European powers leads him to call the fight prematurely. He acknowledges that following the fall of the Creeks and the Seminoles, Native Americans "would continue to wage war and make peace on their own terms well into the nineteenth century" but insists that "control of both was increasingly in American hands" (208). Surely it complicates that claim to realize that at that very moment an Indian empire-the Comanche-held effective sovereignty over a territory as large as that controlled by the United States. It would take another war for empire, this one against the creole American nation-state of Mexico, to initiate the changes that would begin to subordinate the Comanche and then the Sioux (and other Plains and Western Indians) to the federal government, bringing to a culmination the brutal history whose origins Gould has so effectively untangled. Having said that, it is, of course, the untangling of those origins that makes Among the Powers of the Earth so important and such a welcome counterpoint to politicians' endless invocations of American exceptionalism. The book is not, in rhetoric or substance, a de-bunking book. Gould does not argue that the founding generation had clay feet. They did not seek to protect special forms of property, nor did they conspire to protect slavery or to commit genocide on Native Americans. In his telling, they strove to build a nation whose standing in international law was unexceptional, and then to further the interests of that new nation. The United States was certainly exceptional in some ways; there would be little point in national historiographies if every nation were not exceptional in some ways. But, when viewed through the lens of the law of nations, some of the things that made the United States exceptional relative to the Old World-not just an anti-monarchical commitment to liberty, but also the reliance on racial slavery and the imperative of dispossessing Native peoples-are not the sorts of differences that inspire patriotic rhetoric today. The book acknowledges Jefferson's claim that "the United States was an empire of liberty, but," as Gould adds, "it was also an empire" (217). As his analysis makes clear, liberty for some entailed slavery or dispossession for others. ---------------- Review by Chris Tudda, Office of the Historian, Department of State Note: The views presented here are my own and do not necessarily reflect those of the U.S. Department of State or the United States Government. What were the cultural and political roots of American independence? How did the United States transform itself from a colony run by the most powerful nation on the planet to an independent nation-state that spanned an entire continent? Diplomatic and political historians have been offering answers to these questions for decades.1 In his latest monograph, Among the Powers of the Earth, Eliga Gould, building upon his previous arguments about the creation of a distinctly American national identity,2 now contends that American independence occurred in large part because of "the consent of other nations and other people." (2). Gould persuasively argues that "the drive to be accepted as a treaty-worthy nation in Europe played a role in the making of the American republic at least as important as the liberal and republican ideologies that have framed scholarship on the American Revolution since the Second World War" (11). Ironically, however, Gould shows that adherence to this legal tradition cemented the new nation's commitment to slave-owning and the creation of a continental empire during the nineteenth century. When Europeans emigrated to North America, their rights and responsibilities that they had enjoyed as British subjects accompanied their physical move. Their ancestors inherited these rights. North American law therefore reflected the natural law of London (and Paris). Gould explains that despite this inheritance, differences between Europeans and Americans emerged, mainly because the British faced severe competition from other legal systems, not only other colonial systems such as those of the French and the Spanish, but also African and Native American customs and laws. (27) The interesting development is that the British-Americans, like the Indians and privateers on the oceans, began to behave in ways that their European masters did not expect. The diversity of the American experience encouraged the Americans to develop their own identity, which became tied into resistance after 1763. Gould's important contribution to the historiography of this period is his demonstration that despite this growing and distinct American identity, the Revolution occurred because Americans could not shake, but actually in fact embraced, their deep ties to these European traditions. To illustrate these antecedents to the American Revolution and the Early Republic, Gould closely examines the removal of Acadians from Nova Scotia, the development of slavery in the colonial era, and the drive for independence. The first episode, related in chapter one, is a compelling analysis of how a group of settlers who had lived in a disputed boundary area in eastern Canada for almost a century and who remained neutral between the British and the French found themselves in a "legal situation that had more in common with that of pirates" and others on the margins of European law than with their European ancestors. (39) The British treated the neutral Acadians as wartime belligerents who were not entitled to any legal or physical protections. Colonial soldiers thus raided and burned Arcadian settlements in the same brutal, no-holds-barred way they attacked warring Indian tribes. Chapter two examines the law of slavery and the development of the peculiar institution in colonial America. What Gould shows is that the right to own slaves had a long and strong legal foundation in both the New World (the Americans inherited this right as British subjects), as well as in the Old (slavery's long tradition in Africa made it acceptable, i.e. legal, for Westerners to enjoy). By creatively using captivity narratives, Gould also shows that a tradition of slave-owning among the Indian tribes "strengthens[ed] slavery's protected status under Europe's own treaties and international customs" (60). The British attempt to clamp down on the Americans and to spread European public law to others in their empire is the subject of chapter three. Gould again argues, quite convincingly, that the decision to reassert control from the center of the empire ultimately led not only to the Revolution but a fundamental change in the relationship between all of the peoples of North America. The events of 1775 showed that the colonists wanted to return to the wilderness conditions of the previous century. The rebels, London contended, had rejected European law and had to be brought, by force, back into the fold. Thus in chapter four, Gould explains that the British believed that the Declaration of Independence and the means the Americans used to fight the British--guerilla warfare tactics such as ambushes and other forms of "irregular warfare"--demonstrated the Americans' contempt for the law. The Americans therefore had to tailor the Declaration and their behavior to conform to European standards. The document was thus presented not as a lawless act of sedition, but rather a means for securing alliances and establishing lawful trade with Britain's rivals. Meanwhile, the Americans fought as civilized a war as they could, treating British prisoners of war according to accepted standards of international warfare despite the fact that most British commanders refused to reciprocate. After the British granted independence and recognized the United States in 1783, they still refused to allow the new nation to become a fully-functioning independent country. The British government, angry that it was still owed debts for property confiscated during the War as stipulated by the Treaty of Paris, refused to withdraw from their forts in the Old Northwest, armed Indian tribes on the frontier, and refused to sign a commercial treaty with the United States. The fact that the nascent nation was governed by the unworkable Articles of Confederation did not help matters, as sovereignty resided in the individual states.3 By the 1790s, after the outbreak of war between Britain and France, London blockaded French ports in Europe and the Caribbean, which hurt American trade. The Americans, not surprisingly, saw all of these as attacks on their hard-won sovereignty. Spain also took a hard line against the new nation, especially in the borderlands between West Florida and the lower Mississippi. Once the states ratified the Constitution and created a new government, the states had finally replicated, not replaced, the European system of the rule of law. President Washington's subsequent decision to put down the Whiskey Rebellion in 1791, Gould argues, demonstrated a willingness to use the central government's coercive powers against recalcitrant rebels who resembled the colonists, the Acadians, and others who had earlier resisted the rule of law. Jay's Treaty with Britain (in particular the provision that Britain finally abandon the Western forts), and the Treaty of San Lorenzo with Spain, meanwhile, demonstrated the new nation's willingness to engage in the diplomatic rule of law with its horse-trading and commitment to compromise. The last two chapters illustrate how the colonial and revolutionary periods set the stage for American behavior during the nineteenth century. An examination of slaveholding and the first Seminole War show, respectively, that Americans used the legal traditions that they had adapted from the Europeans to justify holding blacks in bondage and expanding the nation's borders. Gould offers a fascinating discussion of how Britain cracked down on the slave trade during the early Republic, but still considered slave owning perfectly legal. This buttressed slaveholders' insistence "that the United States [must] protect the rights to which they were entitled under slavery's positive law" in the European legal tradition. (161) The Seminole War, meanwhile, demonstrated that Spain's New World empire was crumbling, and Andrew Jackson's actions against Indian tribes were fully justified under the rules of international law, which valued stability and governance in such an unruly frontier area. The Americans, therefore, "identified the Union's expansion with the need to uphold the treaty law upon which the peace of Europe and America ultimately depended" (197). This is an important and insightful book, and is made more enjoyable by the author's engaging writing style. His empathy for the victims of a legal system that marginalized rather than included comes through in the case studies he has offered. I highly recommend Among the Powers of the Earth to all diplomatic historians. ---------------- Review by William Earl Weeks, San Diego State University Eliga Gould has produced a valuable addition to the growing body of literature on the origins and nature of the American Empire. Although the term still raises the ideological hackles of some scholars, further explorations of the American Empire seem likely because it offers a new and compelling way of explaining the facts of U.S. history. Placing that history in an imperial framework promises not just a new view of American foreign relations, but also a new framework that places early foreign relations at the center of American history. The foreign relations of the Early Republic, far from being the relatively unimportant addendum it has been in recent decades, may actually be critically important to understanding U.S. history. Gould argues that "the nation that Americans created was an entangled nation," and its foreign relations reflects that fact. (10) As the title suggests, Gould frames the development of the United States as a "New World Empire," and chronicles how it assumed its place among "the powers of the earth," a successor state positioned for dominance in North America by a favorable geography as much as by its military and economic power. Gould suggests that the main reason for the creation of a union of colonies was to prevail in the centuries-long European imperial struggle for control of North America. The American Union emerged out of the specific political and geographic circumstances of North America in the mid-eighteenth century, and that emergence cannot be understood apart from them. In Gould's scheme, American history does not begin with the tax revolts of the 1760s and 1770s, it begins with the colonists' expansionist tendencies in the 1750s. Gould locates the origins of a "New World Empire" in that decade, amid the European struggle to control the North America. Formerly on the margins of royal authority, Parliament now sought to reduce the autonomy of the colonists by boosting Britain's military presence on the land and cracking down on colonial smugglers and privateers at sea. This was necessary because the ill-considered actions of the colonists increasingly jeopardized British interests in Europe. The North American colonists went from being the front edge of British imperial expansion, to a thorn in the British imperial side, to a proto-rival to the British Empire. Hence, Gould sees the American Revolution originating "not in the growing distinctiveness of the colonies that became the United States or their sense of being apart from Britain, but in the bonds that tied them as never before to Europe's diplomatic republic." (42) Later he adds "To a greater extent than is often realized, the revolution's origins lay in a novel series of attempts to pacify Britain's empire in North America and the West Indies. . . .As events would show, the most serious threat to Britain's effort to craft a lasting peace in North America came not from France or Spain, or from Indian friends and foes, but from the resistance that greeted Parliament's attempts to check the autonomy of the colonies on the Atlantic seaboard" (80, 104). Gould's narrative reveals the extent to which British imperial policy in North America was often dictated by the actions of the colonists themselves rather than planned and executed in London. The best example of this was the death in 1754 of the French officer Jumonville at the hands of one of George Washington's Indian guides, and Washington's subsequent (if inadvertent) acknowledgment of the deed as an "assassination."# This one act of violence initiated a chain of events resulting in the global conflagration of the Seven Years War, certainly not something that was desired by British policymakers even if the outcome was as favorable as they could have hoped. Gould notes that"...Washington turned an unauthorized act by a renegade Indian into one for which Britain could be held accountable in courts throughout Europe"(41) . British imperial ambitions in North America were limited, but those of the colonists were impatient and open ended. The War of Independence was a critical turning point in the long struggle for dominance in North America The emergence of the new Republican Empire radically altered the imperial balance of power in the Western Hemisphere. In place of a British government that sought to treat honorably with the Indians and restrict the westward movement of its colonists, their former colonies embraced a policy of breakneck westward expansion that saw treaties as expedients on the road to complete domination. This expansionist thrust pointed in all directions-north toward Canada, south toward the Caribbean, west toward Spanish America. In the end, it flowed in the direction of the least resistance, via a broad swath to the west and south, where European and Indian claims could be the most easily challenged, thus avoiding the bedrock resistance of British Canada. The growth of the American republican empire involved imposing the new regime on the peoples and cultures of North America, with or without their consent. While scholars have long noted that the Revolution created the conditions for what Gould terms "statelessness" for some Native American tribes, he also emphasizes an emerging body of scholarship that presents both the War of Independence and the War of 1812 as, in part, civil wars. Gould's narrative demonstrates that the creation of a brand-new empire out of the flux of an imperial struggle was a multi-faceted task. The author's primary focus is on the legal dimension essential to the rise of the new 'New World Empire.' Its creation was, in part, accomplished by military means of course, but it also by the force of law. Power had to be legally constituted and internally and legitimated internationally. Even as the U.S. asserted its existence by force it sought to demonstrate it was a 'responsible' power that was both "treaty worthy" (11) and willing to abide by the current rules of international law and practice. Given his background in legal history, it is not surprising that Gould emphasizes the shifting legal geography in the creation of an American Empire: "One of the book's central arguments is that the drive to be accepted as a treaty-worthy nation in Europe played a role in the making of the American republic at least as important as the liberal and republican ideologies that have framed scholarship on the American Revolution since the Second World War" (11). The Declaration of Independence announced to the world the existence of an American republican empire, but in order to be made real it first had to prove itself a durable entity, part of its ongoing struggle to be both internationally autonomous and politically unified. To a considerable degree, the new American republican empire confronted the same challenge that formerly faced Parliament: asserting its authority over fractious populace spread over an extensive domain in which the line between national and international was both semi-permeable and continually evolving. Foreign relations scholars have long believed that the Constitution of 1787 was inspired in large part by the inadequate foreign policy powers of the Articles of Confederation.1 Yet, equally important, the Constitution was intended to make the Union permanent. The tenuous nature and critical importance of that union had long been clear to American political leaders. Washington's "Circular to the State Governments" in 1784 in which he proclaimed "it is only in our united character as an empire, that our independence is acknowledged, that our power can be regarded, or our credit supported" is but one of many examples of this sentiment one might point to. (127) Gould, following the lead of David Hendrickson, characterizes the Constitution as a 'peace pact' that brought a common body of law to the United States and the varied people under its jurisdiction.2 Yet the creation of a vigorous central authority, possessed of the power to collect taxes and raise armies, and committed to challenging all foes, domestic or foreign, might more fairly be said to have imposed order rather than to have created peace, or perhaps more precisely, it imposed order in the name of peace. From the start, federal power stood supreme, although in the daily affairs of most Americans it was mostly invisible. This created the impression of weakness, but as Gould quotes the words of one observer, "they [the United States] look weaker than they really are" (142). The ratification and implementation of the Constitution was but one step (albeit a critical one) in the creation of a truly durable American Empire. In the international sphere, Gould reaffirms the importance of the Jay Treaty as "a decisive moment in consolidating the independence that Congress had unilaterally declared nearly twenty years earlier" (138). Gould sees the emergence of a hemispheric Pax Americana by 1825, a regime of law that countenanced slavery and Indian removal even as it promoted itself as the cutting edge of human freedom. Gould casts the early republic as a multi-cultural, multi-racial empire from the start, its pretensions of being a 'white republic' continually contradicted by the presence of people of color within its extensive domain. Even as the US asserted its power over Native Americans, Spaniards, and runaway slaves in an often brutal fashion, it also sought to legitimate its behavior and make it conform to accepted standards of international law and practice. Gould frames period 1812-1818 as crucial turning point in this process. The War of 1812 against Great Britain was but one a part of a larger struggle for imperial control. For if maritime rights were a primary cause of the war, the ongoing war against the Native American tribes of the southeast and Gulf Coast was perhaps an equally important aspect of the era. Splitting them off from their British allies proved critical to defeating the Native Americans. Native American resistance had long been a decisive element in the imperial struggle for power, making a stand of forty years in the Ohio Valley and longer along the Southeast and Gulf Coast. Gould sees the period 1812-1818 as turning point in the conquest of Native America, a time of relentless assault that he terms the "scourging" of the Indians. Control of the Southeast and Gulf Coast regions was a key goal of the early American Empire. East Florida, in particular, was a racial and cultural gumbo that looked like a witches' brew of anarchy and rebellion to many white Americans. Yet effective action seemed foreclosed by the intransigence of Madrid, the determined resistance of Native Americans and runaway slaves, and the standards of international law and practice that stymied U.S. efforts. In the end, the audacity of Jackson's military conquest of East Florida was complemented by John Quincy Adams's legal shrewdness in counseling a policy of returning the captured territory without apology and warning that if Spain did not take effective steps to control the province, it would be seized again, this time without compensation. Surprisingly, the U.S. emerged from the Florida controversy with both the imperial spoils of military conquest and as a presumed defender of international law. Gould also charts the evolution of an American Empire of law and practice on the high seas, a worthy endeavor given that the maritime dimension of the American Empire is all too often overlooked or underestimated in its importance. The maritime realm was where Americans were most embedded in the emerging world economy, and they did not shrink from efforts to impose a legal regime on it. This they did so both unilaterally and at times in concert with Great Britain. Gould observes, "Britons and Americans viewed the oceans over which Britain exercised this dominion as treaty-bound space, and they assumed European treaties and customs operated with as much force and authority on the high seas as they did on land" (82). Perhaps the most important aspect of this joint condominium over the high seas concerned what Gould terms "slavery's changing legal geography" (147). Efforts to work with the British to control the international slave trade, however halfhearted, proved a valuable precedent in establishing the rights of the Federal government to act against the slave institution. The liminal spaces of the high seas and the western territories drew the U.S. into the international Age of Emancipation where the logic of emancipation could begin to be realized. Among the Powers of the Earth concludes by framing the Monroe Doctrine as the announcement of a hemispheric legal regime whose principles were supported by history and circumstance. Monroe's words confirmed the new geopolitical reality of the Western Hemisphere of an ascendant United States and a de facto Anglo-American condominium. The Doctrine was not an empty threat but rather a self-evidently true Declaration of Hemispheric Independence that reflected the geopolitical changes since the 1750s. Ultimately, Among the Powers of the Earth is an important step in an apparent paradigm shift away from the notion of the early U.S. as an isolated, virtuous republic mostly intent on minding its own business to one which situates the emergence of the U.S. amid the larger context of Hemispheric, oceanic, and European affairs. From the start, the U.S. was a key player in the imperial struggle for dominance in North America and in the hemisphere. Gould highlights the extent to which the history of the United States was a function of the international circumstances from which it emerged, and by so doing offers a key example of how a transnational approach can cast new light on old questions. Transnational history may not mean leaving the nation-state entirely out of our histories but rather embedding it in its larger imperial context. An imperial history of the United States problematizes the concept of national boundaries and national identity and reveals them both to be contingent on global events and processes more than heretofore was generally thought. Yet the author does make one assertion that seems to clash with both the story he tells and my own sense of the history of the time: "It would be more accurate to say that the revolution enabled Americans to make the history that the other people were prepared to let them make. . . . Americans could only make the history that others allowed them to" (13, 218). This seems counter to the record of early U.S. foreign relations as a litany of near non-stop expansion and a steady series of victories over various foes. My primary observation as a historian of the period is not how other states and peoples "allowed" the U.S. to make their history but rather the extent to which Americans imposed their will on their Spanish, French, and Native American rivals, and (although it took two wars) even forced the British into a position of grudging respect. All of these actors sought to contain the United States; only the British did, partially. This objection aside, Eliga Gould has produced a work that is required reading for all scholars of the Early American Empire. ---------------- Author's Response by Eliga Gould, University of New Hampshire Let me begin by thanking the members of this forum for writing such thoughtful, engaging essays. If nations make the history that others are prepared to let them make, the same is true of books. As anyone who has written one knows, every book has at least two meanings: the one that the author (or authors) intended, and the one that readers and other authors choose to give to it. By their very nature, books are collaborative projects. Much as we might wish that the case were otherwise, writers rarely get the last word. By this metric, I am pleased with what the reviewers have to say. All four highlight the central role that the quest to be accepted as a treaty-worthy nation under Europe's law of nations played in the making of the early American republic, and each gives due attention to the double edged nature of that quest - on the one hand undergirding the liberty that the Union's citizens sought for themselves, while strengthening the dominion that they claimed over Indians, African Americans, and other Europeans. James Sidbury writes that the "book is not, in rhetoric or substance, a debunking book," while James Lewis says it deserves to be "widely read." I am particularly gratified that the essayists find the writing to be accessible and "engaging," as Chris Tudda writes. A book on the law of nations could easily be neither. If Among the Powers of the Earth becomes, as William Earl Weeks predicts, "required reading," especially for students of the American Revolution and the early republic, it will have achieved one of the goals that prompted me to write it. Of course, it is rare for reviewers to deliver praise without including a critique or two. The authors in this forum are no exception. Writing from opposite sides of the argument, Sidbury and Weeks wonder whether in insisting that citizens of the United States could only make the history that others let them make, I have gone far enough (Sidbury) or too far (Weeks). In the case of Sidbury's critique, which builds on the important article on "ethnogenesis" that he wrote with Jorge Cañizares-Esguerra for the William and Mary Quarterly in 2011,1 he is right to note that the Comanche continued to overawe other powers on the High Plains, including Mexico and the United States, for half a century after Jackson vanquished the Creeks and Seminoles. Americans in Comanchería made history on the Indians' terms, not the other way around. On the other hand, without disputing the "non-stop expansion" and "steady series of victories" that Weeks mentions in his essay, I remain less persuaded that Americans have ever (then or now) had the power to impose their will unilaterally on others. To look no further than the North American union that the founders envisioned in 1776 - an imaginary empire that included Bermuda, Newfoundland, and the Bahamas - no nation, even one as powerful as the United States eventually became, ever has complete control over its own destiny. It is undoubtedly true, though, that the history of American expansion has often revealed a powerful unilateralist strain. Lewis's critique is more extensive and has two parts. The first is that the book fails to acknowledge earlier scholarship on the diplomatic history of the early United States. If Among the Powers of the Earth were primarily about American foreign relations, this would be a valid criticism. The book's main concern, however, is with what historians have come to think of as the internationalist or unionist interpretation of the revolution. Although diplomacy certainly plays a role, the emphasis is on the law of nations and how the quest for recognition within that legal system shaped both the Union's internal structure and its relations with other nations and people. In a lengthy endnote, which Lewis may have missed, the book does discuss James Hutson's realpolitik critique of Felix Gilbert's idealist interpretation of the Model Treaty of 1776 (222n1), and it makes extensive use of the work of Max Savelle on the diplomatic history of the colonial era and Bradford Perkins on the early republic's foreign relations. Ultimately, though, the book's purpose is not to take issue with the finer points of American diplomatic history, but to use that history, as well as the history of the law of nations, to suggest new ways for thinking about the revolution as a whole. Lewis's other criticism is that the book does not pay enough attention to the revolution "as Americans understood and experienced it" (4-5) and that it devotes too much attention to what other people, especially the British, thought. As I note in the introduction, I wrote the book as an exercise in "entangled history" (10-13). In keeping with this approach,2 the book insists that the actions of men and women who were not citizens of the United States played a role in the Union's history that was often as important as the role of men and women who were. Entangled histories also acknowledge the fluid and protean character of national labels like British or American, especially in contested borderlands like the ones that proliferated during and after the American Revolution, and they recognize that historical actors in such places often wore more than one national hat. As I think the book shows, this fluidity was especially true of the people whom the revolution displaced: Indians, African Americans, and Loyalists, none of whom fit easily into the national histories of Britain, Spain, France, or the United States and whose histories therefore require cross-national approaches. Finally, rather than relying on rigid, overdrawn or superficial comparisons - the distinction between the sartorial republicanism of the U.S. diplomatic corps and the aristocratic mores of ancien regime Europe is a good example - the book assumes that other nations and people have histories that are every bit as complex and dynamic as the nation whose history they are helping to make. If we want to know how Americans experienced and understood the revolution, we need to know how the nations and people with whom they were most closely connected experienced and understood it. >From Lewis's review, it is unclear how much sympathy he has with this sort of entangled history. In the paragraph that he flags as mixing American perspectives with British sources and in the paragraphs that follow (202-206), the larger point is to show that the American concept of domestic dependent nationhood, which Chief Justice John Marshall famously used to describe the legal status of Indians in the United States, was not an idea original or unique to U.S. history and jurisprudence but that had precedents in British and European relations with 'dependent nations' elsewhere. For Americans, the relevant precedents included British India, Sierra Leone, and Saint-Domingue before it declared its independence as Haiti in 1804. Although some of the sources in the pages that discuss this history are British, most of the key players are either Americans or Loyalists (who of course were also Americans). It so happens that the source on p. 202 that Lewis describes as being by an "English writer" was written by a Scottish American named Charles Chalmers, who served with the British army on Saint-Domingue in the 1790s and who describes himself in the pamphlet as being "long resident in the United States" and an "American loyalist" who owned a plantation in Kent County, Maryland, before the revolution.3 From a dispatch quoted on the same page by Edward Stevens, an Edinburgh-trained physician and friend of Alexander Hamilton from St. Croix, who served as U.S. envoy to Saint-Domingue between 1798 and 1800, it is clear that the "independent power" that Chalmers credits Toussaint Louverture, the liberated slaves' leader, with hoping to establish was one where the creole general would continue to govern "apparently under the sanction of the French Republic" (202). In other words, informed observers, including Chalmers, Stevens and, in all likelihood, Louverture himself, saw Louverture as the head of a dependent nation.4 What matters is that the progenitors of what became a cornerstone of U.S. Indian policy include a Loyalist, a former slave, and an American diplomat who spent most of his adult life under the colonial jurisdiction of Denmark. Readers will have to decide for themselves what they think of the entangled history exemplified by the U.S. involvement in Saint-Domingue and by interconnected events elsewhere in the book. At its best, diplomatic history has always embraced connected approaches, though the connections typically involve fully independent, internationally-recognized states and nations, as opposed to the protean figures who play central roles in Among the Powers of the Earth. Connections of the latter variety are starting to find their way into histories of the American Revolution and the early republic - one thinks, for example, of Maya Jasanoff's recent book on the Loyalists and Alan Taylor's Civil War of 1812.5 As such histories proliferate, and as we rediscover the extent to which men and women on the Union's margins, including Indians, African Americans, and displaced Europeans, helped make not only their own history - as James Sidbury and Jorge Cañizares-Esguerra have argued - but the history of the colonies that became the United States, we are bound to hear a lot more about people who embodied both American and British perspectives, often at the same time, and who just as frequently had ties to other nations as well. As historians take these insights to heart, the result, hopefully, will be a fuller, more dynamic understanding of the revolutionary era as a whole, including the history of the nation that the American founders helped to create. Copyright (c) 2013 H-Net: Humanities and Social Sciences Online. H-Net permits the redistribution and reprinting of this work for nonprofit, educational purposes, with full and accurate attribution to the author, web location, date of publication, H-Diplo, and H-Net: Humanities & Social Sciences Online. For any other proposed use, contact the H-Diplo Editors at email@example.com. Notes 1 Jack P. Greene, Peripheries and Center: Constitutional Development in the Extended Polities of the British Empire and the United States, 1607-1788 (Athens: University of Georgia Press, 1986); Christopher Tomlins, Freedom Bound: Law, Labor, and Civic Identity in Colonizing English America, 1580-1865 (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2010). 2 Gould, The Persistence of Empire: British Political Culture in the Age of the American Revolution (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2000). 3 See Jay Sexton's The Monroe Doctrine: Empire and Nation in Nineteenth-Century America (New York: Hill & Wang, 2011) for a suggestive survey of the history American foreign policy that emphasizes the importance of British imperial history. See also Sam W. Haynes, Unfinished Revolution: The Early American Republic in a British World (Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2010). Notes 1.See, in particular, David C. Hendrickson, Peace Pact: The Lost World of the American Founding (Lawrence: University Press of Kansas, 2003); Leonard J. Sadosky, Revolutionary Negotiations: Indians, Empires, and Diplomats in the Founding of America (Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2009): J. C. A. Stagg, Borderlines in Borderlands: James Madison and the Spanish-American Frontier, 1776-1821 (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 2009); James E. Lewis Jr., The American Union and the Problem of Neighborhood: The United States and the Collapse of the Spanish Empire, 1783-1829 (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1998); Peter Onuf and Nicholas Onuf, Federal Union, Modern World: The Law of Nations in an Age of Revolutions, 1776-1814 (Madison, Wisc.: Madison House, 1993); and Peter S. Onuf, Jefferson's Empire: The Language of American Nationhood (Charlottesville: University Press of Virginia, 2000). 2. See, in particular, Felix Gilbert, To the Farewell Address: Ideas of Early American Foreign Policy (Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press, 1961); Robert R. Davis Jr., "Diplomatic Plumage: American Court Dress in the Early National Period," American Quarterly 29 (Summer 1968): 164-79; idem, "Republican Simplicity: The Diplomatic Costume Question, 1789-1867," Civil War History 15 (March 1969): 19-29; James H. Hutson, John Adams and the Diplomacy of the American Revolution (Lexington: University Press of Kentucky, 1980); and Frederick W. Marks III, Independence on Trial: Foreign Affairs and the Making of the Constitution (Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 1973). Notes 1 For scholarly examinations of the roots of American independence, see Max Savelle, Seeds of Liberty: The Genesis of the American Mind (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1948); Jack P. Greene, The Quest for Power: The Lower Houses of Assembly in the Southern Royal Colonies, 1689-1776 (New York: W.W. Norton, 1972); T.H. Breen, Tobacco Culture: The Mentality of the Great Tidewater Planters on the Eve of the Revolution (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1985); Paul K. Longmore, The Invention of George Washington (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1988); Edmund S. Morgan, Inventing the People: The Rise of Popular Sovereignty in England and America (New York: W.W. Norton, 1988); John Camp, Out of the Wilderness: The Emergence of an American Identity in Colonial New England (Middletown: Wesleyan University Press, 1990); Bernard Bailyn, To Begin the World Anew: The Genius and Ambiguities of the American Founders (New York: Vintage Books, 2003); and Breen, The Marketplace of Revolution: How Consumer Politics Shaped American Independence (N.Y.: Oxford University Press, 2004). 2 Eliga H. Gould, The Persistence of Empire: British Political Culture in the Age of the American Revolution (Chapel Hill: The University of North Carolina, 2000). 3 For more on these issues, see Norman A. Graebner, Richard Dean Burns, and Joseph M. Siracusa, Foreign Affairs and the Founding Fathers: From Confederation to Constitution, 1776-1787 (Santa Barbara: Praeger, 2011), which I recently reviewed for H-Diplo. (http://www.h-net.org/~diplo/essays/PDF/ForeignAffairs-FoundingFathers.pdf) Notes 1 See, for example, Frederick W. Marks III, Independence on Trial: Foreign Affairs and the Making of the Constitution, 2nd ed., (Wilmington, DE, 1986); Walter LaFeber, "The Constitution and United States Foreign Policy: An Interpretation," Journal of American History, vol. 74, no.3, (December, 1987), pp. 605-717. 2 David Hendrickson, Peace Pact: The Lost World of the American Founding (Lawrence, KS, 2003). Notes 1 James Sidbury and Jorge Cañizares-Esguerra, "Mapping Ethnogenesis in the Early Modern Atlantic," William and Mary Quarterly, 3rd ser., 68 (2011): 181-208. 2 For the general concept of entangled history, see Eliga H. Gould, "Entangled Histories, Entangled Worlds: The English-Speaking Atlantic as a Spanish Periphery," American Historical Review, 112, no. 3 (2007): 746-786. 3 Charles Chalmers, Remarks on the Late War in St. Domingo (London, 1803), 85, 108 (see also 36n). 4 Philippe R. Girard, "Black Talleyrand: Toussaint Louverture's Diplomacy, 1798-1802," William and Mary Quarterly, 3rd ser., 66, no. 1 (2009): 87-124; for Stevens, see Stacey B. Day, "Stevens, Edward," in Complete Dictionary of Scientific Biography, (Detroit, 2008), 13: 46-47. 5 Maya Jasanoff, Liberty's Exiles: American Loyalists in the Revolutionary World (New York, 2011); Alan Taylor, The Civil War of 1812: American Citizens, British Subjects, Irish Rebels, and Indian Allies (New York, 2010).