- Are there such things as a ‘global commodities’ in the period before 1800? And if so, in what ways are they different from today’s global commodities?
- Which commodities were globally exchanged in the early modern period? And what issues do they raise? [consider one or more commodity]
- How did material objects connect different areas of the world?
- While Europe and Asia became increasingly connected through the exchange of things, their economies diverged. Why?
Anne Gerritsen and Giorgio Riello, ‘Global Material Cultures: Things in History’ (Unpublished paper, June 2008). [copies will be distributed], or
Please read at least two of these readings
Donald Quataert (ed.), Consumption Studies and the History of the Ottoman Empire, 1550-1922: An Introduction (Albany, 2000), introduction.
Jeremy Prestholt, ‘The Global Repercussions of Consumerism: East African Consumers and Industrialization’, American Historical Review, 109/3 (2004), pp. 755-782.
Beverly Lemire and Giorgio Riello, ‘East and West: Textiles and Fashion in Eurasia in the Early Modern Period’ , Journal of Social History, 41/4 (2008), pp. 887-916.
Robert Batchelor, ‘On the Movement of Porcelains: Rethinking the Birth of Consumer Society as Interactions of Exchange Networks 1600-1750’, in Frank Trentmann and John Brewer, eds., Consuming cultures, Global Perspectives (Oxford, 2006), pp. 95-122 [HS 2000.C6]
John E. Wills, ‘European Consumption and Asian Production in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries’, in Brewer and Porter, Consumption and the World of Goods, ch. 6 [HS 2200.C6]