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Globalization and the Colonial Origins of the Great Divergence

Intercontinental Trade and Living Standards in the Dutch East India Company’s Commercial Empire, c. 1600-1800

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Pim de Zwart

In Globalization and the Colonial Origins of the Great Divergence Pim de Zwart examines the Dutch East India Company’s intercontinental trade and its effects on living standards in various regions on the edges of the Indian Ocean in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. Contrary to conventional views, De Zwart finds significant evidence of the integration of global commodity markets, an important dimension of globalization, before the 1800s. The effects of this globalization, and the associated colonialism, were diverse and could vary between and within regions. As globalization and colonialism affected patterns of economic development across the globe they played a part in the rise of global economic inequality, known as the ‘Great Divergence’, in the early modern period.
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Pim de Zwart

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