Dangerous Economies: Status and Commerce in Imperial New York

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Overview

We are much more accustomed to thinking of eighteenth-century New York as a colonial rather than imperial city. Before the American Revolution, however, those who lived in British North America were not just colonists, but also subjects of the British Empire. The British Empire in its turn has usually connoted more or less competent government officials, a bewigged and distant Board of Trade, and an enormous British military humming the chorus of Rule Britannia: "Britons never shall be slaves." Yet all empires, regardless of their modes of administration or control, consist at heart of individuals living their daily lives and often unconscious of what it might mean to live in an empire.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"In this wonderful snapshot of the relationship between economic systems and social hierarchies in eighteenth-century New York, Serena Zabin offers an exciting view of life on the margins in the imperial city."—Common-Place

"This is not merely an account of a single city but instead a consideration of culture and commerce shaped by political and economic competition and exchange in the Atlantic world. . . . Zabin paints a portrait of colonial New York City that others working on eighteenth-century urban centers will find useful in analyzing how residents thought about their position within the imperial system and their relationships to others, near and far, throughout the empire."—William and Mary Quarterly

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780812241600
  • Publisher: University of Pennsylvania Press, Inc.
  • Publication date: 4/7/2009
  • Series: Early American Studies Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 216
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Serena R. Zabin is Associate Professor of History at Carleton College.
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Table of Contents

Introduction: Imperial New York City 1

1 Where Credit Is Due 10

2 Webs of Dependence 32

3 The Informal Economy 57

4 Masters of Distinction 81

5 Black Cargo or Crew 106

6 Status, Commerce, and Conspiracy 132

Notes 159

Bibliography 193

Index 197

Acknowledgments 203

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