Niall Ferguson's Colossus: The Rise and Fall of the American Empire charts America's rise as a world power, and issues a dire warning about its future.
Is America the new world empire? Presidents from Abraham Lincoln to George W. Bush may have denied it but, as Niall Ferguson's brilliant and provocative book shows, the United States is in many ways the greatest imperial power of all time. What's more, it always has been an empire, expanding westwards throughout the nineteenth century and rising to global dominance in the twentieth.
But is today's American colossus really equipped to play Atlas, bearing the weight of the world on its shoulders? The United States, Ferguson reveals, is an empire running on empty, weakened by chronic defecits of money, manpower and political will. When the New Rome falls, he warns, its collapse may come from within.
'The most brilliant historian of his generation'
'Colossus confirms Niall Ferguson's standing as one of the most incisive writers of history, politics and economics today'
'One of the timeliest and most topical books to have appeared in recent years'
'Yet another tour de force from a writer who displays all his usual gifts of forceful polemic, unconventional intelligence and elegant prose ... guaranteed to spark fierce debate'
'A bravura exploration of why Americans are not cut out to be imperialists but nonetheless have an empire. Vigorous, substantive, and worrying'
Timothy Garton Ash
Niall Ferguson is one of Britain's most renowned historians. He is Laurence A. Tisch Professor of History at Harvard University and a Senior Research Fellow of Jesus College, Oxford. He is the bestselling author of The Pity of War, The Ascent of Money, Empire, The House of Rothschild, The War of the World and Civilization.