Deep in the Heart: The Texas Tendency in American Politics

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9780275983062: Deep in the Heart: The Texas Tendency in American Politics

Cowboy politics is in. When George W. Bush announced a new American policy of pre-emptive attack against potential enemies in 2002, he ushered in the triumph of Texas values over the American agenda. This book traces in lucid and engaging style the fascinating influence of the Texas warrior culture from the Alamo to the present day. This is not a history of Texas, but much Texas history is entwined with American national politics. This book locates such diverse phenomena as Cold War politics, the Kennedy assassination, U.S.-Mexican immigration policies, Texas death penalty practices, and recent U.S. Middle East policy in the context of this Alamo attitude.

While the Texas influence has always been strong, and has ebbed and flowed, never has it been stronger, especially as a guiding force in American foreign policy. Today, people around the world perceive this Manifest Destiny swaggering style in our foreign policy. Because of its sheer size, its border wars with Mexico, its ten-year history as an independent republic, and its having been settled by a warrior culture originating in the English-Scottish borderlands and arriving in Texas via the southern Appalachians, Texas is unique in American politics. The author does not assert that Texas causes, or is the sole cause of, our various policies or of so many violent events. Rather, he demonstrates convincingly that the Texas warrior culture provides a fascinating context for national politics in a way that no other state's political culture can claim.

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Book Description:

Traces the extraordinary influence of Texas warrior culture on American national politics, from the creation myth of the Alamo to the George W. Bush administration's pre-emptive attack policy in the Middle East.

About the Author:

JAMES MCENTEER is an independent scholar, a journalist, and the author of Fighting Words: Independent Journalists in Texas. He is a former Fellow of the Joan Shorenstein Center for the Press, Politics and Public Policy at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.

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