Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Imperial America: Reflections on the United States of Amnesia” as Want to Read:
Imperial America: Reflections on the United States of Amnesia
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Imperial America: Reflections on the United States of Amnesia

3.85  ·  Rating details ·  433 Ratings  ·  20 Reviews
Gore Vidal has been described as the last ‘noble defender" of the American republic. In Imperial America, Vidal steals the thunder of a right wing America—those who have camouflaged their extremist rhetoric in the Old Glory and the Red, White, and Blue—by demonstrating that those whose protest arbitrary and secret government, those who defend the bill of rights, those who ...more
Paperback, 208 pages
Published August 17th 2005 by Nation Books (first published 2004)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Imperial America, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Imperial America

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
Rating details
Sort: Default
Jul 29, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Our problems seem new because, as a nation of people, we are disconnected from our history. Much of this writing is from the late 80's and still apply today. We live in such a vacuum called reality TV. wake up.
Jan 08, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to columbialion by: Self
Brilliant indictment of the lack of political awareness of the American citizenry in electing government, and it's consequences.
Nov 12, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-nonfiction
***4.5 stars***

If G. V. had written our high school U.S. History textbooks (one can dream), we would have learned our history a hell of a lot better--and actually enjoyed the learning--(and not necessarily in that order).
pan ellington
Jan 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
can't call vidal anything but privileged. but still - the man was woke as fuck. his language and wit is a delight. would have loved to hear what he would have had to say about the state of things, these days...
Jul 03, 2016 rated it really liked it
Imperial America is a decent collection of essays by the talented and infamous Gore Vidal. Vidal presents an array of short writings that illustrate his skepticism of the security state and the puppets who run the show. Many of the arguments and points made are valid while some need to be taken with a salad bowl full of salt. Hardly anything is cited and the reader gets the impression that much editing has transpired regarding the sources and quotes. However, this is not a detriment to the work ...more
Bill Lawrence
Oct 19, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: politics
Enjoyable and interesting read, but a bit repetitive, understandably so as Vidal revisits the same themes over years of writing in various political journals and magazines. Gore Vidal remains an entertaining and erudite writer, especially in the field of American politics and the failure of the system as the constitution evolves from the 'framers', to what he believes will be the eventual fall of the American Empire. I find it difficult to argue against him, other than to remain sceptical as to ...more
Timothy Fitzgerald
Dec 10, 2008 rated it liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
I found a lot of the Nixon and Reagan era articles to be very enlightening. I think Vidal exposes some intrinsic flaws within our government. I do think, though, that he may be a little heavy on the conspiracy theories. I think he may give a little too much credit to the powers that be in terms of their ability to put policies into play that influence complex end games years in advance.
Indi Martin
Oct 11, 2009 rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: Not my Dad!
Shelves: read-was-ok
If you like Michael Moore, you may like Gore Vidal - except he's considerably more extreme. I agree with many of his more salient points; at times he loses even me, and I doubt there are many liberals more liberal than I am out there. Still, pretty much everything he says about W feels spot-on to me.
May 28, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
All but about 40 pages here are reprinted from the big Collected Essays volume (and not to carefully proofread here), but I can't think about Obama's drones without wishing Vidal was still around to excoriate him in print. It's good to be reminded about what changes and doesn't in American politics, but this selection is a bit repetitious to be read straight through.
Aug 15, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015, nonfiction
I wish I could have met Gore when he was alive and picked his brain on everything.

It's amazing how various situations, ways our country was leaning, political corruption, and other essays by him from the 70s, 80s, and early 90s are all still relevant and very much still the case today.
Sep 07, 2010 rated it liked it
I heart Gore Vidal. Fiction, non-fiction, whatever. Fabulous, opinionated, crazy, commie-pinko, who's now an octagenarian and still trying to whip people into a frenzy to have a second Constitutional Convention. Good times.
Aug 12, 2012 rated it really liked it
Reading this book, and probably any book of political essays by Vidal, is to remove the veil between political fantasy and political reality.
Tamara Temple
Sep 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: political, philosophy
I like the way Vidal writes, but I always end up starting to suspect my beliefs because I agree with him so much.
Oct 07, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Insightful essays on the current condition of America by the brilliant Gore Vidal..
Apr 07, 2008 rated it really liked it
He really doesn't write bad books
Mar 17, 2016 rated it liked it
Gore Vidal true to himself writes this short analysts of the American scene. I just wonder what he would have said of the current political small upheaval.
Apr 16, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Michael Czarnecki
rated it really liked it
Aug 19, 2014
rated it it was ok
Apr 27, 2014
rated it liked it
May 29, 2007
Andre Gedeon
rated it really liked it
Jul 17, 2008
rated it liked it
Nov 22, 2007
Darlene Ferland
rated it really liked it
Mar 01, 2010
rated it really liked it
May 12, 2011
rated it liked it
May 31, 2008
rated it it was amazing
Mar 12, 2012
Matthew Eddy
rated it it was amazing
Mar 14, 2017
Alena Ivanov
rated it it was amazing
Feb 05, 2017
rated it liked it
Jun 18, 2008
Wyatt Kaldenberg
rated it it was amazing
Sep 11, 2011
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
To those goring Gore Vidal.... 1 4 Mar 23, 2008 10:28PM  
  • American Power and the New Mandarins: Historical and Political Essays
  • The Bomb
  • Crashing the Party: Taking on the Corporate Government in an Age of Surrender
  • Moral Minority: Our Skeptical Founding Fathers
  • Politics Lost: How American Democracy Was Trivialized by People Who Think You're Stupid
  • Drone Warfare: Killing By Remote Control
  • Island of Shame: The Secret History of the U.S. Military Base on Diego Garcia
  • Websters' First New Intergalactic Wickedary of the English Language
  • The Punishment of Gaza
  • The New Imperialism
  • The Hidden Spirituality of Men: Ten Metaphors to Awaken the Sacred Masculine
  • The Thirteen American Arguments: Enduring Debates That Define and Inspire Our Country
  • The Exception to the Rulers: Exposing Oily Politicians, War Profiteers, and the Media That Love Them
  • Death to the Dictator! : A Young Man Casts a Vote in Iran's 2009 Election and Pays a Devastating Price
  • The Story of Pain: From Prayer to Painkillers
  • The Obama Syndrome: Surrender at Home, War Abroad
  • Gag Rule: On the Suppression of Dissent and the Stifling of Democracy
Eugene Luther Gore Vidal was an American writer known for his essays, novels, screenplays, and Broadway plays. He was also known for his patrician manner, Transatlantic accent, and witty aphorisms. Vidal came from a distinguished political lineage; his grandfather was the senator Thomas Gore, and he later became a relation (through marriage) to Jacqueline Kennedy.

Vidal ran for political office twi
More about Gore Vidal...

Nonfiction Deals

  • Death by Living: Life Is Meant to Be Spent
    $4.99 $1.99
  • Sometimes You Win--Sometimes You Learn: Life's Greatest Lessons Are Gained from Our Losses
    $9.99 $1.99
  • The Rise of Superman: Decoding the Science of Ultimate Human Performance
    $5.99 $1.99
  • The Long Tail: Why the Future Is Selling Less of More
    $9.99 $2.99
  • Merlin's Tour of the Universe
    $10.99 $2.99
  • The Black Count: Glory, Revolution, Betrayal, and the Real Count of Monte Cristo
    $11.99 $1.99
  • Quantum Healing (Revised and Updated): Exploring the Frontiers of Mind/Body Medicine
    $12.99 $1.99
  • Elephant Company: The Inspiring Story of an Unlikely Hero and the Animals Who Helped Him Save Lives in World War II
    $15.99 $1.99
  • Prince Charles: The Passions and Paradoxes of an Improbable Life
    $13.99 $2.99
  • Funny In Farsi: A Memoir Of Growing Up Iranian In America
    $7.99 $1.99
  • At Home in the World: Reflections on Belonging While Wandering the Globe
    $9.99 $1.99
  • Effortless Healing: 9 Simple Ways to Sidestep Illness, Shed Excess Weight, and Help Your Body Fix Itself
    $11.99 $1.99
“we no longer live in a nation, but in a Homeland.” 3 likes
“say very mildly, we have only one political party in the U.S., the Property Party, with two right wings, Republican and Democrat.” 1 likes
More quotes…