Cotton was arguably the first modern industry. By the late 18th century, British factories burned fossil fuels and paid wage labor to mechanically process huge quantities of a natural fiber grown an ocean away. My research focuses on cotton in the twentieth century, when the traditional duopoly of British manufacturing and American agriculture began to break down. It takes a global perspective, following cotton across arbitrary national boundaries and showing how cotton helped drive globalization–and how globalization changed the way cotton was grown and consumed.
Selected publications and research papers
Cotton and Race across the Atlantic: Britain, Africa, and America, 1900-1920. Africa the African Diaspora series, ed. Toyin Falola, University of Rochester Press (2016)
“Lancashire and the Undeveloped Estates” in the Journal of British Studies, 2015.
“A Common Brotherhood for their Mutual Benefit: Sir Charles Macara and the Internationalization of the Cotton Industry,” Enterprise and Society, 2015.
“Invested in Empire: Political Elites and Imperial Business in Nigeria and Uganda c. 1900-1920.” Paper presented at the 2012 “Cooperation and Imperialism” conference, University of Bern.
“Lancashire and the New South: British Fact-finding Missions and the Global Cotton Industry” (2012)