system. Even more specific would be a good balanced account of the Mexican War, using both U.S. and Mexican sources and which traces development on both sides of the conflict, and a similar account using the records of Colombia and Nicaragua, which provides a Central American perspective on the isthmian canal question.
Finally, there will be the steady flow of studies of specific events and individuals. Every generation writes its own history, and that is how it should be. A few examples follow standard subjects that need updating: Samuel Flagg Bemis ' Pulitzer Prize-winning study of John Quincy Adams and the Foundations of American Foreign Policy will be forty years old in 1989. Its research is enormous and impeccable, but its stirring nationalism seems out of touch with modern sensibilities. The events of the Texas revolution and war for independence need contemporary coverage. Someone who would link population movement, cultural clashes, and personalities would produce a good modern account of the Texas question. Charles Sellers has not yet published the final volume of his biography of James K. Polk, the one that deals with the war with Mexico. Someone should produce a good modern study of Polk's presidency. The standard work on the Gadsden Treaty, rounding out the contours of the U.S.-Mexican boundary, appeared in 1923. 43 It is badly outdated. A new version that dealt with the interrelationship of railroad interests, domestic U.S. politics, and Mexican politics would be a useful monograph.
In sum, the scholarship on expansion of the past generation has demonstrated the close collections between domestic and foreign politics. It is no longer correct to aver that "politics stops at the water's edge." Historians have a better grasp of the cultural roots of foreign affairs. They have gone part, but not all, of the way toward seeing Indians, Mexicans, and Central Americans as active participants in events rather than as wretched victims or enemies of assertive Yankees. Scholars have also taken some steps in the direction of placing U.S. expansion in the context of an increasingly interdependent world system. A generation from now we can expect that the outline of that system will appear more clearly in the scholarship.