Oceans of Wine: Madeira and the Emergence of American Trade and Taste

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Yale University Press, 2009 - History - 632 pages
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This innovative book examines how, between 1640 and 1815, the Portuguese Madeira wine trade shaped the Atlantic world and American society. David Hancock painstakingly reconstructs the lives of producers, distributors, and consumers, as well as the economic and social structures created by globalizing commerce, to reveal an intricate interplay between individuals and market forces. Wine lovers and Madeira enthusiasts will enjoy Oceans of Wine, as will historians interested in food, colonial trade, and the history of the Atlantic region.

 

Using voluminous archives pertaining to wine, many of them previously unexamined, Hancock offers a dramatic new perspective on the economic and social development of the Atlantic world by challenging traditional interpretations that have identified states and empires as the driving force behind trade. He demonstrates convincingly just how decentralized the early modern commercial system was, as well as how self-organized, a system that emerged from the actions of market participants working across imperial lines. The networks they formed began as commercial structures and expanded into social and political systems that were conduits not only for wine but also for ideas about reform, revolution, and independence.

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Oceans of Wine: Madeira and the Emergence of American Trade and Taste (The Lewis Walpole Series in Eighteenth-C)

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In this expansive, well-researched work from the interdisciplinary field of Atlantic history, Hancock (history, Univ. of Michigan, Citizens of the World: London Merchants and the Integration of the ... Read full review

About the author (2009)

David Hancock is professor of history, University of Michigan. He is the author of Citizens of the World: London Merchants and the Integration of the British Atlantic Community, 1735?1785, The Letters of William Freeman, 1678?1685, and History of World Trade since 1450.

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