Friday, July 26, 2019

"Mr. Smith Goes to China"

New from Yale University Press: Mr. Smith Goes to China: Three Scots in the Making of Britain’s Global Empire by Jessica Hanser.

About the book, from the publisher:
An illuminating account of global commerce in the eighteenth-century Indian Ocean world as seen through the lives of three Scottish traders

This book delves into the lives of three Scottish private traders—George Smith of Bombay, George Smith of Canton, and George Smith of Madras—and uses them as lenses through which to explore the inner workings of Britain’s imperial expansion and global network of trade, revealing how an unstable credit system and a financial crisis ultimately led to greater British intervention in India and China.
Jessica Hanser is assistant professor of history at Yale-NUS College in Singapore. Hanser’s doctoral dissertation, on which this book is based, won Yale University’s Hans Gatzke Prize in European History.

--Marshal Zeringue