Moses Greeley Parker Lecture Series presents:
Empire of Cotton: A Global History
Lowell, MA. Lowell National Historical Park is pleased to host author Sven Beckert for a special presentation and conversation on his book Empire of Cotton: A Global History. Presented by the Moses Greeley Parker Lecture series, the free program will take place on Tuesday, March 15, 2016, at 7:00 p.m., at the National Park Visitor Center, 246 Market Street, Lowell MA. Free parking is available at the Visitor Center lot at 304 Dutton Street.
Throughout its history, Lowell and its industrial system were enmeshed in the global world of cotton production that helped created the modern capitalist economy. Empire of Cotton: A Global History is a winner of the prestigious Bancroft Prize, and a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. Here is a brief summary of the book from the publisher:
Cotton is so ubiquitous as to be almost invisible, yet understanding its history is key to understanding the origins of modern capitalism. Sven Beckert’s rich, fascinating book tells the story of how, in a remarkably brief period, European entrepreneurs and powerful statesmen recast the world’s most significant manufacturing industry, combining imperial expansion and slave labor with new machines and wage workers to change the world.
The empire of cotton was, from the beginning, a fulcrum of constant global struggle between slaves and planters, merchants and statesmen, workers and factory owners. Beckert makes clear how these forces ushered in the world of modern capitalism, including the vast wealth and disturbing inequalities that are with us today. The result is a book as unsettling as it is enlightening: a book that brilliantly weaves together the story of cotton with how the present global world came to exist.
Look for more National Park Service Centennial programming planned for the upcoming year at Lowell National Historical Park. For more information on the park, visit our website at www.nps.govlowe, or give us a call at 978-970-5000. Information on the Moses Greeley Parker Lecture series can be found at www.parkerlectures.com.