Nodes of Capitalism in the Early Modern Indian Ocean – exhibition now at the Library

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View of Nagasaki

‘View of the city of Batavia’ is one of the images included in the exhibition

In September 2023, CAPASIA, a European Research Council (ERC) Advanced Grant Project based in the Department of History at the European University Institute, hosted a conference at the EUI on ‘Nodes of Early Modern Capitalism,1500-1800’.  An exhibition accompanied this two-day event, displaying some of the ‘nodes’ of the Indian Ocean World investigated by the CAPASIA team. These nodes were selected to convey to a broader audience the role of Asian port cities in the emergence of global capitalism over the past five centuries.

The CAPASIA team are delighted that the exhibition has now moved to the EUI Library. The Library’s resources were indispensable not only for the creation of this exhibition, but also are utilised by CAPASIA on a daily basis to pursue our individual and collaborative research goals.

Book display at the EUI Library November 2023

Book display at the EUI Library November 2023

The EUI community can find this exhibition on the Library garden floor and in the book display in the entrance, which features some of the resources available in the Library collections. This exhibition invites to travel in the Indian Ocean World from West to East, from Mozambique to Nagasaki, where for over three centuries European traders interacted with local merchants and communities. These encounters not only ensured that exotic goods from global Asia were brought to Europe where they deeply transformed consumption habits. Interactions between Europe and Asia also were integral to the development of the industrial revolution in the West, and the unequal systems of economic exchange it fostered from the nineteenth century onward.

For more information about the project visit the CAPASIA website.

Blog post authors: 

Michael O’Sullivan and Guillemette Aline Crouzet