Oxford Encyclopedia of the History of American Foreign Relations

The study of US foreign relations is one of the most dynamic fields in American history. The availability of new sources in recent years has opened new opportunities for examining US behavior through the lenses of other nations. Meanwhile, historians of international affairs have increasingly borrowed the methods, questions, and insights of cultural and social history, enlivening their field and opening bold new lines of interpretation. Some scholars have moved away from the traditional focus on presidents, diplomats, intelligence chiefs, and military officers to examine the roles of activists, experts, journalists, athletes, and others in American foreign relations.

This collection captures all these trends in a fully up-to-date, authoritative survey of US foreign relations across almost 250 years. More than 100 entries on topics ranging from the American Revolution to the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq provide basic background well-suited to readers approaching their topics for the first time. But the entries, written by a remarkable array of expert authors, also offer a valuable tool for experienced researchers and advanced scholars. Authors provide surveys of the scholarly literature related to each topic, along with guides to primary sources, including a rapidly growing number of online collections. The volumes cover traditional topics like Anglo-American relations or the role of nuclear weapons in US diplomacy, while also considering themes that have received relatively less attention such as gender, LGBTQ issues, and environmental diplomacy.

All the articles in this collection appear online as part of the Oxford Research Encyclopedia of American History. To read the Oxford Encyclopedia of the History of American Foreign Relations online, see the “Foreign Policy History” section of the ORE of American History. This section will continue to grow as the project expands.

Editor in Chief

Mark Atwood Lawrence, University of Texas at Austin

Associate Editor

Michael R. Anderson, University of Texas at Austin

Thematic Sections







Afghanistan-US Relations (Paul D. Miller)
Antinuclear Movement (Paul Rubinson)
Anti-Imperialism (Robert David Johnson)
Argentina-US Relations (Jennifer Hoyt)
Brazil-US Relations (James Cameron)
Caribbean-US Relations (Tyson Reeder)
Central America-US Relations (Evan D. McCormick)
Chile-US Relations (Patrick William Kelly)
China and the United States (Gregg A. Brazinsky)
The Cuban Revolution (Michael J. Bustamante)
Eastern Europe-US Relations (Gregory F. Domber)
Foreign Economic Aid (Jeffrey F. Taffet)
Foreign Economic Policy (Daniel Sargent)
France-US Relations (Kathryn C. Statler)
India-US Relations (Tanvi Madan)
International Terrorism and the United States (Mary S. Barton, David M. Wight)
Iran-US Relations (Kelly J. Shannon)
Iraq-US Relations, 1920–2003 (Brandon Wolfe-Hunnicutt)
Ireland-US Relations (Sophie Cooper)
Isolationism (Sophie Cooper, Justus D. Doenecke)
Israel-US Relations (Olivia L. Sohns)
Japan-US Relations (Jennifer M. Miller)
The Korean War (James I. Matray)
Labor and US Foreign Relations (Elizabeth McKillen)
The Long War on Drugs (Anne L. Foster)
NATO-US Relations (Susan Colbourn)
Origins of the Vietnam War (Jessica M. Chapman)
The Panama Canal (Michael E. Donoghue)
The Persian Gulf War (Spencer D. Bakich)
Philippines-US Relations (Patricio N. Abinales)
Progressivism and US Power (John A. Thompson)
Saudi Arabia-US Relations (Victor McFarland)
US-Egypt Relations (Karim Elkady)
US Grand Strategy (Thomas P. Cavanna)
US Imperialism, 1898–1914 (Robert McGreevey)
US-Italian Relations (Leopoldo Nuti, Daniele Fiorentino)
The US-Mexico War (Omar Valerio-Jiménez)
US War in Iraq since 2003 (Timothy Andrews Sayle)
The Vietnam War (Andrew J. Gawthorpe)
William McKinley and American Empire (Michael Patrick Cullinane)
Wilsonianism (Trygve Throntveit)