AHRC funding has been secured for a 13-month digital project, Commodity Histories, with Dr Sandip Hazareesingh as Principal Investigator. This will involve the design of an interactive website that will function as a collaborative space for scholars engaged in commodities-related research. The project will also be holding two workshops, in September 2012 and February 2013. Further details will be announced in due course.
Contact: Dr Sandip Hazareesingh
The Commodities of Empire project is co-directed by Dr Sandip Hazareesingh (Ferguson Centre) and Professor Jean Stubbs (Institute of the Americas, University College London). The project's coordinator is Dr Jonathan Curry-Machado (Institute of the Americas, University College London).
The project is currently engaged in a four-year research collaboration (2009-13) with Wageningen University's Technology and Agrarian Development Group, funded by the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO). The theme of the collaboration is Commodities and Anticommodities.
Commodities of Empire also has working links with the following research centres, networks, and projects:
Link to the researchers currently involved in the Commodities of Empire project.
Sandip Hazareesingh is Co-Director of the Commodities of Empire Project and Lecturer at the Ferguson Centre for African and Asian Studies and in the History Department. His current research focuses on the complexities of cotton production in western India in the nineteenth and early twentieth century, and on the commodity-based interconnections between colonial Bombay and imperial Glasgow during the same period. His other research interests include the histories of 'development', environmental history (particularly the impact of deforestation), peasant crop production in the colonial era, and the modern histories of colonial and imperial cities'.
His publications include:
2012: Cotton, climate and colonialism in Dharwar, western India, 1840-1880. Journal of Historical Geography, 38 (1), pp 1-17. Link to paper
2009a: 'Interconnected synchronicities: the production of Bombay and Glasgow as modern global ports c. 1850-1880'. Journal of Global History, volume 1 part 4, pp. 7-31.
2009b: 'Commodities, empires and global history' (with Jon Curry-Machado). Guest Editorial, special issue of the Journal of Global History, volume 1 part 4, pp. 1-5.
'Chasing commodities over the surface of the globe', Commodities of Empire Working Paper No 1, Ferguson Centre for African and Asian Studies, Open University/ Caribbean Studies/ London Metropolitan University, October 2007: online publication. Link to paper.
2007: The Colonial City and the Challenge of Modernity: Urban Hegemonies and Civic Contestations in Bombay 1900-1925. Delhi, Orient Longman.
2001: 'Colonial modernism and the flawed paradigms of urban renewal: the uneven development of Bombay city, 1905-1925'. Urban History, 28, 2 (2001), pp. 235-255.
Link to the Ferguson Centre's website.
Professor Jean Stubbs is joint Director of the Commodities of Empire project and Associate of the Institute of the Americas, University College London. She is also an Associate Fellow of London Metropolitan University's Caribbean Studies Centre, of which she was formerly director. She has published widely on Cuba, her specialist interests spanning tobacco, labour, gender and race. She is currently working on a book provisionally titled The Havana Cigar Universe: Transnational Migration and Commodity Production, 1850-2006, a sequel volume to her early work Tobacco on the Periphery: A Case Study in Cuban Labour History, l860 1958, Cambridge University Press, l985 [Spanish-language edition Tabaco en la periferia: El complejo agro-industrial cubano y su movimiento obrero 1860-1959, Editorial Ciencias Sociales, Havana, 1989].
Her other publications on tobacco include:
''Political Idealism and commodity production: Cuban Tobacco in Jamaica, 1870-1930'', Cuban Studies, 25 (1995), 51-81.
"Turning Over a New Leaf? The Havana Cigar Revisited", New West Indian Guide, Vol.74, Nos 3 & 4, December 2000, pp.235-255.
''Havana Cigars and the West''s Imagination'', in Sander L. Gilman & Zhou Xun (eds), Smoke: A Global History of Smoking, London: Reaktion Books, 2004, 134-139.
"Tobacco in the Contrapunteo: Ortiz and the Havana Cigar" in Cuban Counterpoints: The Legacy of Fernando Ortiz, eds. Mauricio A. Font and Alfonso W. Quiroz, Lexington, Lanham, MD., 2004, pp.105-123.
''Reflections on Class, Race, Gender and Nation in Cuban Tobacco: 1850-2000'', in Constance Sutton (ed.), Revisiting Caribbean Labor: Essays in Honor of O. Nigel Bolland, Kingston, Jamaica: Ian Randle, 2005.
"Reinventing Mecca: Tobacco in the Dominican Republic, 1763-2007", Commodities of Empire Working Paper No 3, Ferguson Centre for African and Asian Studies, Open University/ Caribbean Studies Centre/ London Metropolitan University, October 2007: online publication. Link to paper.
Jonathan Curry-Machado is the Coordinator of the Commodities of Empire project, and an Associate at the Institute of the Americas, University College London. He is also an Associate Fellow of the Caribbean Studies Centre (London Metropolitan University), and is currently working as a Researcher with the Technology and Agrarian Development Group at Wageningen University (The Netherlands), as part of the NWO-funded 'Commodities and Anticommodities' programme, researching rural society in the Hispanic Caribbean in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, its diversity, and resistance to and accommodation with the extension of sugar-cane cultivation. His previous research concentrated on nineteenth century developments in steam machinery, migration of engineering workers, and the rle of sugar in the emergence of sub-imperial transnational networks of globalising trade, capital, skills and technology. The geographical focus of his work is the Caribbean and the Atlantic World.
His publications include:
Cuban Sugar Industry: Transnational Networks and Engineering Migrants in Mid-Nineteenth Century Cuba, New York: Palgrave, 2011 Link to paper
'Sub-imperial globalisation and the phoenix of empire: sugar, engineering and commerce in nineteenth-century Cuba', Commodities of Empire Working Paper No 2, Ferguson Centre for African and Asian Studies, Open University/ Caribbean Studies Centre/ London Metropolitan University, October 2007: online publication. Link to paper
'"Rich flames and hired tears": Sugar, sub-imperial agents and the Cuban phoenix of empire', Journal of Global History, 4:1 (2009)
'Running from Albion: Migration to Cuba from the British Isles in the 19th Century', International Journal for the Study of Cuba, 2:2 (2009)
'Privileged Scapegoats: The Manipulation of Migrant Engineering Workers in Mid-Nineteenth Century Cuba', Caribbean Studies, 35:1 (2007)
'Sin azúcar no hay país: The Transnational Counterpoint of Sugar and Nation in Nineteenth Century Cuba', Bulletin of Hispanic Studies, 34:1 (2007)
'Contradiction, Exclusion and Disruptive Identities: The interaction of engineering migrants with mid-nineteenth century Cuban society', in A. Asgharzadeh, E. Lawson, K. Oca and A. Wahab (eds), Diasporic Ruptures: Globality, Migrancy and Expressions of Identity, Vol.1, Rotterdam: Sense, 2007