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Empire of Cotton : A Global History
by Sven Beckert and Jim Frangione


Overview - The epic story of the rise and fall of the empire of cotton, its centrality in the world economy, and its making a remaking and of global capitalism. Sven Beckert's rich, fascination book tells how the story of how, in a remarkably brief period, European entrepreneurs and powerful statesmen recast the world's most significant manufacturing industry, combining imperial expansion and slave labor with new machines and wage workers to change the world.  Read more...

 
Audio Compact Disc - Unabridged
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More About Empire of Cotton by Sven Beckert; Jim Frangione
 
 
 
Overview
The epic story of the rise and fall of the empire of cotton, its centrality in the world economy, and its making a remaking and of global capitalism. Sven Beckert's rich, fascination book tells how the story of how, in a remarkably brief period, European entrepreneurs and powerful statesmen recast the world's most significant manufacturing industry, combining imperial expansion and slave labor with new machines and wage workers to change the world. Here is the story of how, beginning well before the advent of machine production in the 1780's, these men captured ancient trades and skills in Asia, combined them with the expropriation of lands in the Americas and the enslavement of African workers to crucially recast the disparate realms of cotton that had existed for millennia. We see how industrial capitalism then reshaped these worlds of cotton into in empire, and how this empire transformed the world. The empire of cotton was, from the beginning, a fulcrum of constant and global struggle between slaves and planters, merchants and statesmen, farmers and merchants, workers and factory owners. In this as in so many other ways, Beckert makes clear how these forces ushered in the world of modern capitalism, including the vast wealth and disturbing inequalities that are with is today. The result is a book as unsettling as it is enlightening: a book that brilliantly weaves together the story of cotton with how the present global world came to exist.�

 
Details
  • ISBN-13: 9781622316328
  • ISBN-10: 1622316320
  • Publisher: HighBridge Audio
  • Publish Date: December 2014
  • Page Count: 1
  • Dimensions: 5.6 x 6.5 x 1.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 0.8 pounds


Related Categories

Books > History > World - General
Books > Business & Economics > Industries - Agribusiness
Books > Business & Economics > Industries - Fashion & Textile Industry

 
BookPage Reviews

Audio: The fabric of history

Audiophiles appreciate the entertainment value of listening to all kinds of good books but, every once in a while, an important, sweeping history makes us realize how much we can learn and how immediate and fascinating a well-read audio presentation can make complex, impressively researched ideas. Honestly, I’m not sure I could have read every page of Sven Beckert’s brilliant Empire of Cotton: A Global History, which was named one of the 10 best books of 2015 by the New York Times. But with Jim Frangione’s engaging narration, I didn’t want to miss a minute. Starting in Bronze-Age China and India, Beckert weaves thousands of years of cotton’s history into an intricate panorama of globalization; interconnected economic, social and political systems; and the technological innovations that became the impetus for the Industrial Revolution. With compassion for the misery of those who were forced into the cotton trade, he makes us reconsider the ways in which “cotton capitalism” rests on violence, slavery, the expropriation of land and colonialism.

A DIVA'S DESTINY
In the opening scene of Alexander Chee’s lush historical novel, The Queen of the Night, read by Lisa Flanagan, it’s 1882, and Lilliet Berne, a famed soprano whose rare, fragile voice has made her the toast of the Paris opera scene, walks into a ball at the Luxembourg Palace. She’s approached by a handsome stranger who has written a novel that’s to be the basis for a new opera in which she will star. All divas yearn to create a new role, but here’s the rub—it’s the story of Lilliet’s life, a story she’s hidden from the world, save from four people. As she seeks her betrayer, we are treated to a grand operatic epic, from her Minnesota childhood, her escape to Europe as part of a traveling circus, her flight from the circus to the streets of Paris, then to a ritzy brothel, and finally to her emergence as a great singer and courtesan, with all the requisite reversals of fortune, melodrama and gorgeous costumes, gorgeously described.

TOP PICK IN AUDIO
He called them his “Swans,” and they, the Kenneth-coifed and couture-clothed crème de la crème of New York society, called him their “True Heart.” These well-to-do women brought the charmingly catty, openly gay and overtly campy Truman Capote into their intimate inner circle. Though they were all beautiful and rich, Capote’s favorite was Babe Paley, the exquisite, kind, perfect wife of the larger-than-life, demandingly self-centered founder of CBS. Paley and Capote seemed like soulmates, spending endless hours together, sharing confidences, she revealing all and expecting her secrets to remain secret. In her extraordinary new novel, The Swans of Fifth Avenue, perfectly narrated by Cassandra Campbell and Paul Boehmer, Melanie Benjamin has channeled Capote and, even more expertly, Paley, taking us inside her exquisite homes, into her love for Capote and into his ultimate betrayal of her and her classy clique.

 

This article was originally published in the May 2016 issue of BookPage. Download the entire issue for the Kindle or Nook.

 
BAM Customer Reviews