Is America an Empire?

What makes something an empire and is America one?

I recently got into a Twitter discussion that got me thinking about how people view the notion of empire, colonialism, and America’s role in the world. I noticed that many people balk at the idea that America is or has ever been an empire. Thus, I think it is useful to reflect a bit on this notion of empire as I think people tend to have a very caricatured idea of what constitutes an empire.

From pop culture such as Star Wars, we have become accustomed to thinking about Empires as…