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Description - Embedding Agricultural Commodities by Willem van Schendel

Over the past 500 years westerners have turned into avid consumers of colonial products and various production systems in the Americas, Africa and Asia have adapted to serve the new markets that opened up in the wake of the "European encounter". The effects of these transformations for the long-term development of these societies are fiercely contested. How can we use historical source material to pinpoint this social change? This volume presents six different examples from countries in which commodities were embedded in existing production systems - tobacco, coffee, sugar and indigo in Indonesia, India and Cuba - to shed light on this key process in human history. To demonstrate the effectiveness of using different types of source material, each contributor presents a micro-study based on a different type of historical source: a diary, a petition, a "mail report", a review, a scientific study and a survey. As a result, the volume offers insights into how historians use their source material to construct narratives about the past and offers introductions to trajectories of agricultural commodity production, as well as much new information about the social struggles surrounding them.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9781472461865
ISBN-10: 147246186X
Format: Hardback
(234mm x 156mm x mm)
Pages: 194
Imprint: Routledge
Publisher: Taylor & Francis Ltd
Publish Date: 23-Jun-2016
Country of Publication: United Kingdom

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Author Biography - Willem van Schendel

Willem van Schendel has served as Professor of Modern Asian History at the University of Amsterdam and as head of the South Asia Department, International Institute of Social History. Among his recent books are The Camera as Witness: A Social History of Mizoram, Northeast India (with Joy Pachuau); A History of Bangladesh and Global Blue: Indigo and Espionage in Colonial Bengal. Recent co-edited volumes are Labour Migration and Human Trafficking in Southeast Asia: Critical Perspectives and The Bangladesh Reader: History, Culture, Politics.

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