Putting the United States in North America
Many historians of the United States in the long nineteenth century locate it in the Atlantic world. There is good reason for this. The United States in this period remained culturally, economically, and politically an appendage of Europe. Its inhabitants traded with European countries, remained enmeshed in European power politics, and read European books. This essay shifts the angle of vision from the Atlantic world to the North American continent. Territorial expansion and economic development owed much to geographical propinquity, and Canada, Mexico, and the West Indies each abutted the United States.
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