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Methods

A research team is necessary to accomplish this broad European and Asian project. While it draws on the expertise and findings of older generations of national colonial historians and that of more recent historians of India and China, it is also a project developing in the new directions of global history.  It will be led by the Principal Investigator who will work with a team of new researchers (3 postdoctoral fellows, one PhD student) who will compare and connect across borders within Europe and also across the divide between Europe and Asia. Each member of the team will produce a monograph or thesis.

The team will:

  1. Conduct a comparative literature survey: drawing together literatures written from singular disciplinary approaches – histories of trade, of colonial domination, of ceramics and textiles specialists, of experts in chemistry and dyestuffs, of art and design historians and of cultural historians.
  2. Develop a knowledge exchange for advice by developing networks of scholars and specialist workshops.
  3. Develop a quantitative data store from existing databases of trade flows. To note discrepancies and to reconcile differences.
  4. Develop a website repository of literature surveys, network and workshop reports, quantitative data sets, and stores of visual sources.
  5. Develop case studies of Asian export ware sectors as these developed in Britain, France and Scandinavia.  All developed their Asian textiles and ceramics sectors at a similar time. They will draw on the extensive secondary sources and further primary research on the earlier Dutch case.
  6. Study the September and March company auctions including organization, correspondence, goods sold, dealers attending. Study private and privileged trade.
  7. Sudy factory organization, warehousing and distribution in Asian factory nodes – Madras, Bombay, Negapatnam, Pondicherry, Tranquebar, Canton.

Case studies on Britain will be conducted by the Principal Investigator and a PhD student.

Case studies on the Netherlands, France and Scandinavia (Danish and Swedish East India Companies) to be conducted by three Postdoctoral fellows.

 

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