America and the Cold War, 1941-1991 [2 volumes]: A Realist Interpretation

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America and the Cold War, 1941–1991: A Realist Interpretation is a sweeping historical account that focuses on the policy differences at the center of this conflict. In its pages, three preeminent authors offer an examination of contemporary criticism of the Cold War, documenting the views of observers who appreciated that many policies of the period were not only dangerous, but could not resolve the problems they contemplated.

The study offers a comprehensive chronicle of U.S.-Soviet relations, broadly conceived, from World War II to the collapse of the Soviet Union. It places the origins of the Cold War as related to the contentious issues of World War II and stresses the failure of Washington to understand or seriously seek settlement of those issues. It points out how nuclear weaponry gradually assumed political stature and came to dominate high-level, Soviet-American diplomatic activity, at the same time discounting the notion that the Cold War was a global ideological confrontation for the future of civilization. A concluding chapter draws lessons from the Cold War decades, showing how they apply to dealing with nation-states and terrorist groups today.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"This valuable work for history collections in both public and academic libraries sheds much new light on this recent part of our nation's history. Highly recommended."


Library Journal

"Recommended. All levels/libraries."



Library Journal
Graebner (Randolph P. Compton Professor of History and Public Affairs, emeritus, Univ. of Virginia; America as a World Power: A Realist Appraisal from Wilson to Reagan), Richard Dean Burns (history, emeritus, California State Univ., Los Angeles), and Joseph M. Siracusa (human security & international diplomacy, Royal Melbourne Inst. of Technology, Australia) aim to provide "a sweeping interpretative history of America's Cold War, chronicling the events of the U.S.-Soviet relations from World War II to the collapse of Moscow-dominated communism" as a way to "prompt current and future denizens of the White House and the Kremlin and the American public to develop and assess foreign policies with far more care than has been characteristic recently." Using files released from the archives of the United States and former Soviet Union and their allies, personal memoirs, letters, and hundreds of other primary and secondary sources, they have indeed created a major new resource in cold war literature with the unique perspective of political realism, putting national interest and security over ideology and moral concerns. BOTTOM LINE This valuable work for history collections in both public and academic libraries sheds much new light on this recent part of our nation's history. Highly recommended.—Marcia Welsh, Dartmouth Coll. Lib., Hanover, NH
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780313385254
  • Publisher: ABC-CLIO, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 5/30/2010
  • Series: Praeger Security International Series
  • Pages: 968
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 9.30 (h) x 2.40 (d)

Table of Contents


Introduction 1

Chapter 1 The Grand Alliance 17

Chapter 2 The Road to Yalta 37

Chapter 3 A Troubled World at Peace: 1945 65

Chapter 4 End of the Grand Alliance 97

Chapter 5 The Stabilization of Europe 115

Chapter 6 The Cold War in East Asia 153

Chapter 7 The National Security State 181

Chapter 8 High Tide: The Eisenhower Years 211

Chapter 9 The Kennedy Years 251

Chapter 10 The Cold War at Mid-1960s: The Johnson Years 283

Chapter 11 Watershed: The War in Vietnam 313

Chapter 12 The Search for Detente: Nixon, Kissinger, and Ford 343

Chapter 13 The Carter Years 393

Chapter 14 Rise and Fall of the Second Cold War: Reagan and Gorbachev 441

Chapter 15 The Final Days of the Cold War 487

Chapter 16 Reflections 513

Notes 527

Selected Bibliography 625

Index 645

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