Thursday, March 19, 2015

"We're here to help ..."

Thanks to Noam Chomsky for a little visual history of the imperial impulse that I'd not seen before.

One of the first [national] myths was formally established right after the King of England granted a Charter to the Massachusetts Bay Colony in 1629, declaring that conversion of the Indians to Christianity is “the principal end of this plantation.” The colonists at once created the Great Seal of the Colony, which depicts an Indian holding a spear pointing downward in a sign of peace, with a scroll coming from his mouth pleading with the colonists to “Come over and help us.” This may have been the first case of “humanitarian intervention” — and, curiously, it turned out like so many others.

Chomsky is seldom invited to appear in the "paper of record" for all his international acclaim. The whole article is worth your time.

3 comments:

Brandon said...

https://books.google.com/books?id=1lCwP-RNExkC&pg=PA24&lpg=PA24&dq=Chomsky+NYRB&source=bl&ots=aBFjQyy5jz&sig=XHNG0DPFQ5bfERfIsy7Qn5oVua0&hl=en&sa=X&ei=PJ8MVa-QNY_poATP2YG4BA&ved=0CEcQ6AEwCA#v=onepage&q=Chomsky%20NYRB&f=false

Brandon said...

Page 24 of Chomsky's Language and Politics (AK Press edition)--see above--discusses his verboten-ness among the elite magazines.

Hattie said...

I've been reading the 150th anniversary issue of The Nation. It has a lot of writing from the very first issue right up to the present. Some themes crop up over and over,some seem quaint today,and writing styles have changed. It's a fascinating way to review the history of American liberalism.

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