Review: Sven Beckert’s ‘Empire of Cotton’

January 16, 2015 6:33 PM

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Review: Sven Beckert’s ‘Empire of Cotton’

Global history is the fashion in leading university history departments today. Some of them seek to replace courses in Western civilization with classes in global history, but usually such courses have to be team-taught by a variety of specialists, since so few individual academics have such a broad reach. Empire of Cotton proves Sven Beckert one of the new elite of genuinely global historians.

Too little present-day academic history is written for the general public. Empire of Cotton transcends this barrier and should be devoured eagerly, not only by scholars and students but also by the intelligent reading public. The book is rich and diverse in the treatment of its subject. The writing ...

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