Historians have only recently begun to chart the experiences of maritime regions in rich detail and penetrate the historical processes at work there. Seascapes makes a major contribution to these efforts by bringing together original scholarship on historical issues arising from maritime regions around the world.
The essays presented here take a variety of approaches. One group examines the material, cultural, and intellectual constructs that inform and explain historical experiences of maritime regions. Another set discusses efforts—some more successful than others—to impose political and military control over maritime regions. A third group focuses on issues of social history such as labor organization, information flows, and the development of political consciousness among subaltern populations. The final essays deal with pirates and efforts to control them in Mediterranean, Japanese, and Atlantic waters.
The fourteen articles are well written . . . [and] proves that maritime socio-cultural history forces scholars to rethink their concepts of time, space and knowledge. It not only will help us to understand the past in general but also will clarify how globalization came about.
Seascapes: Maritime Histories, Littoral Cultures, and Transoceanic Exchanges is a collection of essays that examine the history of oceanic culture and its effect around the world. [The editors] have gathered tales of Chinese junks, pirate captains and island culture to chart the ways people have exploited the possibilities offered by different maritime environments.
Seascapes explicitly seeks to transcend individual oceans, to stress ‘interconnectedness’ between land and sea in general and between maritime people and their geographic environments.
In sum, this volume forms a worthwhile contribution to the historiography on oceanic history.
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