WTWA Textbook (pg. 438 – 493)
Economic and Political Effects of Global Commerce
Furs from French North America
Sugar from the Carribean
coffee from southeast Asia
Silver/Gold from the Americas
This resulted in dependence on products so that their loss for even short periods of
times resulted in political disturbances. When new mines for metals were found, the
power from these new riches resulted in soaring/dropping commodity prices.
Internal unrest in countries:
bolstered legitimacy of rule in England, France
prompted local support of rulers in sub-Saharan Afica
o Also led to cival wars and social unrest
Ottoman states, provinces left central control
Safavid rule ended
Ming dynasty gave way to Qing dynasty
Rivalries between princes and merchants resulted loss of Mughal authority (not
helped by peasant uprisings).
Extracting Wealth: Mercantilism
American mining was very lucrative for Spain/Portugal. Other Europeans wanted wealth
too. Other types of products were wanted (sugarcane, cotton, indigo, rice, pelts).
Transformed diet in Europe
Originally from Polynesia then in New World Plantations
Between 1690 and 1790, Europe imported 12 million tonnes (one ton for every
African slave in America)
Tooth decay due to too much sugar became a leading cause of death in Europe.
Colonies were supposed to provide wealth for ‘mother countries’ = mercantilism world’s
wealth was fixed. One countries wealth was due to the expense of other countries. This
assumed that overseas existed just for wealth of other countries (colonies shipped more
than they received in return).
Colonies also had to be closed to other countries so that foreign traders could not
take resources. Mercantilism needed an alliance between merchants and country. Countries
needed independence between economy and politics, so the merchants’
products had to enrich treasury, while the merchant needed the country to
protect his interests.
o This meant chartered companies: European monarchs awarded these
firms monopoly trading rights over areas,
MORE WEALTH = MORE MONEY FOR WARS
New Colonies in the Americas
Rulers in France, England, Holland granted monopolies