In Our Image: America's Empire in the Philippines / Edition 1

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Overview

In a swiftly paced, brilliantly vivid narrative, Karnow focuses on the relationship that has existed between the two nations since the United States acquired the country from Spain in 1898, examing how we have sought to remake the Philippines 'in our image, ' an experiment marked from the outset by blundering, ignorance, and mutual misunderstanding.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Stanley Karnow Has Written The Ultimate Book -- brilliant, panoramic, engrossing -- about American behavior overseas in the twentieth century."

-- The Boston Sunday Globe

"A Page-Turning Story and Authoritative History."

-- The New York Times

"Perhaps The Best Journalist Writing On Asian Affairs."

-- Newsweek

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Though Karnow claims that U.S. imperialism in its former colony, the Philippines, has been ``uniquely benign'' compared to European colonialism, the evidence set forth in this colorful, briskly readable history undercuts that prognosis. He shows that a succession of U.S. presidents and administrators coddled the archipelago's 60 or so ruling families, perpetuating the feudal oligarchy that continues to this day, and widening the gap between rich and poor. Karnow, whose Vietnam: A History is a standard account of the American venture in Southeast Asia, draws intriguing parallels: the U.S.-Philippine war of 1898, much like the Vietnam experience, dehumanized U.S. troops, who looted and annihilated villages; ex-President Marcos, like South Vietnamese ruler Diem, presented Washington with the problem of how to deal with a client state that squandered its credibility. In Karnow's assessment, the ``new prosperity'' under Corazon Aquino has not touched the Filipino countryside or slums. Photos. Author tour. (Apr.)
Library Journal
Philippine history is often described as 300 years in a (Spanish) convent and 50 years in Hollywood. Karnow, who worked for 30 years as a journalist in Asia, narrates the careers of several individuals who influenced the Philippines. His treatment of the indecisiveness of President McKinley over the issue of empire and of the egotistical General MacArthur make the work a definite purchase for libraries. Weaker in treatment is the post-independence period, where Karnow concentrates upon Marcos and Aquino, both of whom he knows. Particularly revealing is his account of the White House coming to terms with the Aquino election victory. Those who love swashbuckling history will enjoy this work.-- Donald Clay Johnson, Univ. of Minnesota Libs., Minneapolis
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780345328168
  • Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 3/3/1990
  • Edition description: 1st Ballantine Books ed
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 536
  • Sales rank: 469,915
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Stanley Karnow won the Pulitzer Prize for this account of America's imperial experience in the Philippines. In a swiftly paced, brilliantly vivid narrative, Karnow focuses on the relationship that has existed between the two nations since the United States acquired the country from Spain in 1898, examining how we have sought to remake the Philippines "in our image," an experiment marked from the outset by blundering, ignorance, and mutual misunderstanding.
Read More Show Less

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Sort by: Showing all of 7 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 28, 2005

    One of the greatest history books ever written

    Stanley Karnow's Vietnam is his most popular book, but to be honest it can't hold a candle to In Our Image. I read a great deal of history, and to me this is one of the most detailed yet entertaining and insightful history books on a specific subject ever written. I'm sure few people will get to reading this Pulitzer Prize winning novel, but if they do the effort will be well worth it.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 8, 2011

    In Our Image - What a Wake up Call!

    Finally moving to the Philippines after 30-day visits for the past 10 years, explanation for peculiar observations concerning government services (complete lack thereof, or extreme procrastination), ubiquitous corporate greed (no concept of "customer service"), and a general culture of disgruntled apathy pervading society, has been extremely elusive due to its complexity. On each trip over here I would ask myself (and those around me): Why is this country so backward? The answer is always, "Corruption everywhere", or "Its always been like this". One does not need a book to learn of the love/hate relationship with the US. Society here tries in vain to "look" like the US. That's the key: "look". They have no intention (or ability) of attempting to "be" like the US. It is all a sad mediocre charade. Even after all these decades of "independence" the Philippines remains without an identity. Why would I choose to live here? If you can shove this country's debilitating problems aside . . . It is truly paradise! "In Our Image" explains it all! And the explanation (that I've been looking for) truly is quite complicated. But it all makes perfect sense now. Karnow has put together a masterpiece. This book is a MUST for any "Kano" who has entered into a relationship (of any kind) with a Filipina(o). It was said by those around me that I have "openly embraced the culture and have strived to learn the Philippine ways". Baloney! I understood very little prior to reading "In Our Image". Too bad it ended with Cory. I would love to have read Karnow's take on on the continuing inept: from FVR to the present Noynoy.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 25, 2011

    Outstanding!!!

    This is the number one book on the hows and the whys of America's relationship with the Philippines. I first bought this book in 1989, read it, and loaned it to a friend. I never got it back. After buying the NOOK Color, I downloaded the book. I'm revisited the entire chapter.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 17, 2002

    A Great Story for an Unknown History

    I feel that Karnow really illustrated what was going on in the Philippines. Many people are clueless about the relationship between the U.S. and the Philippines. Great BOOK!!

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