Based on an impressive body of information and data, this volume recounts the history of five continents over a long stretch of time and in a comparative approach. From the beginning of European expansion the question was posed: what were the "empire tools" that gave Europe its military superiority, even before the industrial revolution? What was it that enabled Europeans to withstand life-threatening tropical diseases and to control indigenous populations? This book gives a fresh and wide-ranging view of the construction and collapse of the modern colonial empires of Europe, the United States of America and Japan.
Bouda Etemad is Professor of History at the Universities of Geneva and Lausanne, and the author of De l'utilité des empires. Colonisation et prospérité de l'Europe, XVIIIe-XXe siècle (Armand Colin 2005).