Empire Studies Magazine


Food and the Social Order

The current generation of food writers has taken this topic and turned it into an entire field of study. Talented writers have discovered a treasure of fascinating people and powerful themes in the products so familiar to


Ahab and Portrayals of Evil

How is an American villain different from a Russian villain, or a West African villain? What is “evil” to us? Why are some villains really powerful characters with deep grips on our imagination, and others

Richard Widmark, star of Pickup on South Street 0

Film Noir

When I recently circulated a list of presentation topics among the cadets in my “Literature and Empire” course, a third of them wanted to present the Detectives and Narratives of Suspicion topic. It is easy to see why:


The Woman in Melville

My students and I were considering a haiku about the wind from Mount Edo when one of my best cadets, Dawsey, asked out loud if the poet who wrote it (Basho) might be laughing at us for trying to read so much into his casual little verse.


War and the Natural World

The unintended consequences of war—both good and bad—are fascinating to my students. My cadets always engage with lesson plans on the technology that came out of World War II, for example, or the packs of wild dogs in Vietnam which are the descendants of U.S. canine corps from the late 1960’s, or the marine


Kingdom Under Glass

The relationship between man’s empire and nature is critical, as we are finding out today. Overwhelmingly the relationship is one of sheer exploitation, but


War, Society, and Commerce in World War II

The success of most wars depends in part on several important non-combat factors, and crucial among them is public support. In her fascinating and ambitious 2006 book, From Submarines to Suburbs, Cynthia Henthorn examines both the relationship of