American Silver and World Trade
What is the role of American silver in world trade in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries? What does it mean that China was the ‘silver sink’? What is the importance of ‘arbitrage’ in world history? Which are the effects of silver on Europe, China, India and the Ottoman Empire? Why is silver considered to be the ‘first global commodity’? What is the importance of the Manila galleons? And what is the role of Japan in this story?
Prepare on “How, when and where did silver circulate?”. Divide the work in three groups and report back on:
- The role of Potosi in the production of silver
- The role of Europe
- Production of silver in Japan
Post on the Unit Forum 200-words on one of these questions:
- In what ways was trade 'global' before the arrival of Spanish silver in China?
- How important is the founding of Manila by the Spanish in terms of global history?
- Flynn, Dennis O., and Giráldez, Arturo, ‘Cycles of Silver: Global Economic Unity through the Mid-Eighteenth Century’, Journal of World History, 13, no. 2 (2002), pp. 391-427.
- Atwell, William S. "Another Look at Silver Imports into China, ca 1635-1644" in Journal of World History 16.4 (2005): 467- 489.
- ‘The importance of silver in the creation of a world economy in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries has been overrated’. Discuss.
- How different were the connections created along the Silk Roads from those created by the silver trade?
- Why was silver the only global commodity in the early modern period?
- Attman, Artur, ‘Precious Metals and the Balance of Payments in International Trade 1500-
1800’, in Wolfram Fischer, R. Marvin McInnis and Jürgen Schneider, eds., The Emergence of a World Economy, 1500-1914: Papers of the IX. International Congress on Economic History (Wiesbaden, 1986) [HK 14.I6 vol. I, 1 in store]
- Atwell, William S., ‘International Bullion Flows and the Chinese Economy, circa 1530-1650’, Past and Present, 95 (1982), pp. 68-90.
- Barrett, Ward, ‘World Bullion Flows, 1450-
1800’, in James D. Tracy, ed., The Rise of Merchant Empires: Long-Distance Trade in the Early Modern World, 1350-1750 (Cambridge, 1990), ch. 7, pp. 224-254 [HY 3030.R4]
- Flynn, Dennis O., and Giráldez, Arturo, ‘China and the Manila Galleons’, in Dennis O. Flynn, World Silver and Monetary History in the 16th and 17th Centuries (1996), ch. 15 [HQ 1300.M3]
- Flynn, Dennis O., and Giráldez, Arturo, ‘Born with a ‘Silver Spoon’: The Origin of World Trade in 1571’, in Idem (eds.), Metals and Monies in an Emerging Global Economy (Aldershot, 1997), ch. 11, pp. 259-279 [HQ 1300.M3]
Dennis O. Flynn & Arturo Giraldez, ‘Arbitrage, China, and World Trade in the Early Modern Period,’ Journal of the Economic and Social History of the Orient 38.4 (1995): 429-48. http://www.jstor.org/stable/3632434
- Flynn, Dennis O., and Giráldez, Arturo (eds.), Metals and Monies in an Emerging Global Economy (Aldershot, 1997) [HQ 1300.M3]
- Glahn, Richard von. Fountain of fortune: money and monetary policy in China, 1000-1700 (Berkeley: California University Press, 1996). HQ 1283.V6
- Topik, Steven, ed. et.al, From silver to cocaine : Latin American commodity chains and the building of the world economy, 1500-2000. Durham, 2006. See, for example, the chapter by Carlos Marichal, entitled 'The Spanish-American Silver Pesa: Export Commodity and Global Money of the Ancien Regime'.
- Van Cauwenberghe, H.G. (ed.), Money, Coins and Commerce: Essays in the Monetary History of Asia and Europe (from Antiquity to Modern Times) (Leuven, 1991). [HQ 1300.I6]
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