In 1807 the British “Act for the Abolition of the Slave Trade” received the Royal Assent. The Act represented the first significant attempt by a Great Power to exert global influence over the development of human rights, and, relatedly, labor conditions worldwide. The essays presented in this book by an international panel of historians and social scientists aim to shed light specifically on the changes which the legal abolition of the slave trade brought about – directly and indirectly – in the labor relations of different regions and continents. The sixteen essays discuss the connected developments in the Americas (Brazil, the Caribbean and the United States), Africa (Cameroon, the Cape Colony, the Belgian Congo) and the Netherlands Indies (Java).
For a long time, historiography was the sum of national efforts. Historians automatically thought and wrote within the framework of nation states – even when discussing “foreign policy” and “inter-national” topics. “Globalization” is beginning to change their approach. Now that borders have become more fluid in contemporary society, and interest in transnational processes is increasing, the principles of the methodological nationalism of the past are undergoing a critical review. A different view of global cohesion parallels this trend. Until recently, the North Atlantic perspective dominated the mental world order: the “modern” period was believed to have started in Europe and North America and to have spread gradually throughout the rest of the world; the temporality of the core area was considered to have defined developmental periods elsewhere as well. This Eurocentrism is now under fire, and many attempts to circumvent it are in progress. The peer-reviewed book series
Studies in Global Social History figures within these new trends. Each volume in this series addresses (the connections between) macro-regions and aims to visualize contrasts and similarities, to demonstrate how our present global society has materialized from uneven and combined developments and from interaction between acts “from above” and “from below”: from rulers, entrepreneurs, politicians, and administrators on the one hand and from slaves, peasants, indentured labourers, wage-earners, and housewives on the other hand.
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A companion volume to
Charity and Economy in the Orphanages of Early Modern Augsburg, this book takes up the agency and individuality of the laboring poor and their children. It examines the economic lives of poor, distressed, or truncated families on the basis of 5,734 biographical descriptions of children who passed through the City, Catholic, and Lutheran orphanages of Augsburg between 1572 and 1806. Studied in conjunction with administrative, criminal, and fiscal records of various sorts, these “Orphan Books” reveal the laboring poor as flexible and adaptive. Their fates were determined neither by the poverty they suffered nor the charity they received. Rather, they responded to changing economic and social conditions by using Augsburg’s orphanages to extend their resources, care for their children, and create opportunities. The findings will interest historians of poverty, charity, labor, and the Reformation.
The studies offered in this volume contribute to a Global Labor History freed from Eurocentrism and methodological nationalism. Using literature from diverse regions, epochs and disciplines, the book provides arguments and conceptual tools for a different interpretation of history – a labor history which integrates the history of slavery and indentured labor, and which pays serious attention to diverging yet interconnected developments in different parts of the world. The following questions are central:
▪ What is the nature of the world working class, on which Global Labor History focuses? How can we define and demarcate that class, and which factors determine its composition?
▪ Which forms of collective action did this working class develop in the course of time, and what is the logic in that development?
▪ What can we learn from adjacent disciplines? Which insights from anthropologists, sociologists and other social scientists are useful in the development of Global Labor History?
Migration is the talk of the town. On the whole, however, the current situation is seen as resulting from unique political upheavals. Such a-historical interpretations ignore the fact that migration is a fundamental phenomenon in human societies from the beginning and plays a crucial role in the cultural, economic, political and social developments and innovations. So far, however, most studies are limited to the last four centuries, largely ignoring the spectacular advances made in other disciplines which study the ‘deep past’, like anthropology, archaeology, population genetics and linguistics, and that reach back as far as 80.000 years ago. This is the first book that offers an overview of the state of the art in these disciplines and shows how historians and social scientists working in the recent past can profit from their insights.
Long-distance migration of peoples have been a central if little understood factor in global integration. The essays in this collection contribute to a new history of world migrations, written by specialists of particular areas of the world. Collectively these essays point towards a shift from the regional migrations of individual seas and oceans of the early modern era toward nineteenth-century labor migrations that connected the Pacific and Indian to the Atlantic Oceans. Detailed case studies demonstrate the importance of human migration in the development, consolidation and critique of empire-building, theories of race, modern capitalism, and large-scale commercial agriculture and industry on every continent.
Insatiable Appetite: Food as Cultural Signifier in the Middle East and Beyond explores the cultural ramifications of food and foodways in the Mediterranean, and Arab-Muslim countries in particular. The volume addresses the cultural meanings of food from a wider chronological scope, from antiquity to present, adopting approaches from various disciplines, including classical Greek philology, Arabic literature, Islamic studies, anthropology, and history. The contributions to the book are structured around six thematic parts, ranging in focus from social status to religious prohibitions, gender issues, intoxicants, vegetarianism, and management of scarcity.
Contributors are: Tarek Abu Hussein, Yasmin Amin, Kevin Blankinship, Tylor Brand, Kirill Dmitriev, Eric Dursteler, Anny Gaul, Julia Hauser, Christian Junge, Danilo Marino, Pedro Martins, Karen Moukheiber, Christian Saßmannshausen, Shaheed Tayob, and Lola Wilhelm.
A 17th-century French haberdasher invented the Black Mass. An 18th-century English Cabinet Minister administered the Eucharist to a baboon. High-ranking Catholic authorities in the 19th century believed that Satan appeared in Masonic lodges in the shape of a crocodile and played the piano there. A well-known scientist from the 20th century established a cult of the Antichrist and exploded in a laboratory experiment. Three Italian girls in 2000 sacrificed a nun to the Devil. A Black Metal band honored Satan in Krakow, Poland, in 2004 by exhibiting on stage 120 decapitated sheep heads. Some of these stories, as absurd as they might sound, were real. Others, which might appear to be equally well reported, are false. But even false stories have generated real societal reactions. For the first time, Massimo Introvigne proposes a general social history of Satanism and anti-Satanism, from the French Court of Louis XIV to the Satanic scares of the late 20th century, satanic themes in Black Metal music, the Church of Satan, and beyond.
The Control of Fuddle and Flash: A Sociological History of the Regulation of Alcohol and Opiates provides a historical and comparative overview describing the regulation of the use of alcohol and drugs (opiates) in the United States, the United Kingdom and the Netherlands. It explains the conditions and causes of the various regulatory regimes, such as the economic benefits reaped from the colonial opium trade and the role that duties on alcohol played in state formation. Moreover, it explores the consequences of different regulatory regimes, e.g. the shift in the supply of (increasingly strong) liquor and the professionalisation of crime, both unintended consequences of American Prohibition.
The Control of Fuddle and Flash provides original insights into the political economy of regulatory regimes, and sheds new light on the contemporary debate on the ‘drug problem’.
'Caste' is today almost universally perceived as an ancient and unchanging Hindu institution preserved solely by a deep-seated religious ideology. Yet the word itself is an importation from sixteenth-century Europe. This book tracks the long history of the practices amalgamated under this label and shows their connection to changing patterns of social and political power down to the present. It frames caste as an involuted and complex form of ethnicity and explains why it persisted under non-Hindu rulers and in non-Hindu communities across South Asia.