A new series from Associate Professor Brendon O’Connor aims to highlight the variety within US foreign policy history. As editor of the four‐volume series, Dr O’Connor has drawn on the best existing scholarship on America’s foreign policy to examine both the development of the so called American tradition and the emergence of what Dr O’Connor calls the anti‐American tradition. His introductory essays also place the notion of political traditions at the forefront of studying US diplomatic history. “In terms of the American tradition, over time a variety of strands have emerged that often share certain basic beliefs,” Dr O’Connor said. “The anti‐ American tradition is also long standing and dates back to the late 18th and early 19th century. It’s from that era that stereotypes about Americans as culturally and diplomatically unsophisticated first emerged and they’ve been employed ever since, particularly in verbal attacks on the US,” he added.
United States Studies Centre chief executive Professor Geoffrey Garrett said that the four volumes show that the history of US foreign policy has divergent strands. “There’s been a tendency to overlook this variety in American foreign policy with people looking for simple ways to explain America's perceived flaws,” Professor Garrett said. “Dr O’Connor is to be congratulated on adding to the Centre’s brief as a disseminator of important information on how the world views America.” The series, released by Sage, will form the basis of two subjects Dr O’Connor plans to teach on American political traditions and anti‐Americanism at the University of Sydney.