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Benevolent Empire: U.S. Power, Humanitarianism, and the World's Dispossessed.


Benevolent Empire: U.S. Power, Humanitarianism, and the World's Dispossessed

Stephen R. Porter

University of Pennsylvania Press


290` pages



Pennsylvania Studies in Human Rights


This book explores political-refugee aid initiatives and related humanitarian efforts led by American people and institutions from World War I through the 1960s, both international relief efforts and domestic resettlement programs aimed at dispossessed people from Europe, Latin America, and East Asia. It considers how, why, and with what effects American actors took responsibility for these people, arguing that the US rise to a position of global elite power was justified and fueled by the proposition that its objects of philanthropic focus might include any vulnerable people, showing how associational governing techniques were key to how American people and institutions presented themselves to the world as a benevolent empire. Each chapter outlines a case study of a major humanitarian initiative abroad or a refugee resettlement program in the US: philanthropy during World War I and the efforts of James Becker, the resettlement of Jews during Nazi rule, philanthropic activity for World War IIAEs civilian victims overseas, the US Displaced Persons Program, the Hungarian Refugee Program, and the Cuban Refugee Program. ([umlaut] Ringgold, Inc., Portland, OR)

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Article Type:Book review
Date:Aug 1, 2017
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