The word Anglosphere describes a concept of a group of anglophone (English-speaking) nations which share historical, political, and cultural characteristics rooted in or attributed to the historical experience of the United Kingdom. Its definition varies with the different authors who have put it forward.
The term is usually attributed to science fiction writer Neal Stephenson, used in his 1995 novel The Diamond Age. Its first published use after this was in an article by James C. Bennett entitled "Canada's World Advantage. The term "Anglophonie" is used rarely, usually in contradistinction to Francophonie, but is more common in other languages.
According to Bennett, "the Anglosphere is not a club that a person or nation can join or be excluded from, but a condition or status on a network", and
... as a network civilization... without a corresponding political form, has necessarily imprecise boundaries. Geographically, the densest nodes of the Anglosphere are found in the United States and the United Kingdom, while Anglophone regions of Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Ireland, and South Africa are powerful and populous outliers. The educated English-speaking populations of the Caribbean, Oceania, Africa and India pertain to the Anglosphere to various degrees.
Bennett also writes:
''Anglospherism is assuredly not the racialist Anglo-Saxonism dating from the era around 1900, nor the sentimental attachment of the Anglo-American Special Relationship of the decades before and after World War II.... Anglo-Saxonism relied on underlying assumptions of an Anglo-Saxon race, and sought to unite racial "cousins".... Anglospherism is based on the intellectual understanding of the roots of both successful market economies and constitutional democracies in strong civil society.
Historian Robert Conquest has also promoted the concept. John Ibbitson of the Canadian newspaper The Globe and Mail identified five core English-speaking countries with common sociopolitical heritage and goals: Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, and the United States.
The Andrew Roberts book A History of the English Speaking Peoples since 1900 specifically references Bennett's book and the Anglosphere, and promotes a "united we stand, divided we fall" ethos for the English-speaking world.
Regionalists tend to be on the left wing. In the United States they tend to favour immigration from South and Central America. Left-wing critics often view the Anglospheric countries as representing a type of cultural conservatism and economic liberalism, which they believe should be avoided. Some also believe that focusing on cultural similarities rather than geographical proximity is a type of indirect racism, as culturally similar people tend to have common ancestry and, therefore, ethnicity. This criticism has also been levelled at regionalism as nearby countries also tend to be racially similar.
Michael Ignatieff has written that the term overstates the similarities of the United States and the UK, and understates the similarities of, and the connections between, the UK and continental Europe.
The Anglosphere challenge is a term developed in the book The Anglosphere Challenge written by James C. Bennett. It actually refers to two separate challenges:
The historical facts which substantiate the existence of these two challenges are presented in a number of documents including the Anglosphere Primer, the Anglosphere Challenge book, and a refinement of the argument in a pamphlet on the The Third Anglosphere Century on the subject from the Heritage Foundation.
Bennett believes that the spontaneous deployment of network commonwealths in the Anglosphere will alleviate the disruption of any Technological Singularity. Similarly, the "wisdom of crowds" benefits provided by network commonwealths will ensure that the Anglosphere will, as the subtitle of his book proclaims, "lead the way in the twenty-first century."
Commentators on the rise of China (the Sinosphere) have referenced China's goal of surpassing the Anglosphere and the concern that the Anglosphere will take steps to halt that effort.
Why Anglos run the world: a taste for war.(The Anglosphere Challenge: Why the English-Speaking Nations Will Lead the Way in the Twenty-First Century)(Book review)
Jun 01, 2006; The anglosphere Challenge: Why the English-Speaking Nations Will Lead the Way in the Twenty-First Century, by James C....