On Cotton, Slavery, and Capitalism

Recently, Sven Beckert, Laird Bell Professor of History at Harvard University, spoke at UTA about his new book, Empire of Cotton: A Global History. I was asked to write a guest post about Beckert’s talk for the USIH Blog, and the post became available earlier today. Here is an excerpt:

“The global,” Beckert stated, “cannot be understood without the local.” This emphasis placed on connections not only revealed the significance of specific regions to a worldwide industry, but it also unveiled the necessity of moving beyond restrictive timeframes. Beckert explained in the presentation how the events of the eighteenth century cannot be separated from what happened in the nineteenth century, or the world we live in today. Broad timeframes and a global perspective help reveal the complex connections that continue to shape modern behaviors, living conditions, and ideologies.

Read the full post over at the USIH Blog here: “Understanding ‘the Unity of the Diverse’: Sven Beckert on the Entangled History of Cotton, Slavery, and Capitalism”


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