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Phyllis Hunter
University of North Carolina, Greensboro (Greensboro, NC 27412-5068)
Geographies of Capitalism: Imagining 'the Orient' in Early America

This book is an interdisciplinary study of how colonial Americans formed ideas about Asia before direct trade began in the 1780s. Americans, especially those in port cities, used products from the Orient daily, read newspaper dispatches from the near East weekly, and contacted Europeans in Asia on occasion. As a result, they constructed an imaginary landscape and developed particular images of peoples around the globe. “Imagining ‘the Orient’” explores how early Americans formed ideas about and incorporated products from Asia; thus, it examines, within a specific historical context, the complex process of understanding other cultures and peoples through objects, texts, and encounters.

Project fields:
U.S. History

Summer Stipends

Research Programs

$5,000 (approved)
$5,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
6/1/2003 – 7/31/2003