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Meeting the EnemyAmerican Exceptionalism and International Law$
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Natsu Taylor Saito

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780814798362

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9780814798362.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM NYU Press SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.nyu.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of NYU Press Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in NYSO for personal use.date: 24 September 2021

A Manifest Destiny

A Manifest Destiny

First Principles and American Identity

Chapter:
(p.76) 4 Establishing the Republic
Source:
Meeting the Enemy
Author(s):

Natsu Taylor Saito

Publisher:
NYU Press
DOI:10.18574/nyu/9780814798362.003.0005

This chapter examines how the ideological framing of the United States's domestic practice converged with foreign policy, focusing on the consolidation of U.S. territorial claims to encompass all of its “lower forty-eight” states. It begins with an overview of American territorial expansion in the nineteenth century involving numerous acquisitions of territory not only from Indigenous nations but also from countries recognized as fully independent sovereign states. It then considers the rationale used by the United States to exempt itself from the strictures of international law, as well as the U.S. Constitution, in the course of its expansion. It also explains how America expanded the arguments used by the earliest English settlers to articulate a unique “manifest destiny” and argues that U.S. continental expansion is an illustration of American exceptionalism.

Keywords:   foreign policy, lower forty-eight states, manifest destiny, continental expansion, territorial expansion, United States, international law, American exceptionalism

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