“The History of Global Trade & Commerce” topic of Binghamton University Conference


BINGHAMTON, NY -- Binghamton University’s Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies (CEMERS) will host a conference, “Negotiating Trade: Commercial Institutions & Cross-Cultural Exchange in the Medieval & Early Modern World,” September 24 and 25.

On Friday, September 24, Paul Freedman of Yale University will speak about “International Luxury Products: Scarcity, Value and Uniqueness”. Scheduled for Friday and Saturday, Leonard Blussé from the University of Leiden will speak about “Making Ends Meet: The Emporia of Monsoon Asia and the Newcomers from Europe.” 

The conference is part of CEMERS’ yearlong series of events that will focus on evolving global markets and the challenges of international commerce, transport, banking and credit prior to the nineteenth century. Referred to as the “Trade Institute,” the series includes lectures, workshops, and symposia focusing on popular items that are often taken for granted. Topics range from a closer look at spices and stimulants of non-European origin including sugar, coffee, tea and chocolate, which were transformed from humble comestibles at the edges of the “civilized” medieval world to luxury commodities in trans-regional emporia. The Trade Institute will also look at  the role of “staples” which have become cheap sources of energy and pervasive “snack” foods in our current global culture and economy.  Also under consideration will be global markets in wheat, flax, rice, tobacco, cotton, wool, silk, porcelain and other raw materials and crafted items, subsistence and luxury.

This programming is linked to a core curriculum of undergraduate and graduate courses offered through twelve different departments and programs in Harpur College and the School of Management. The Institute’s community outreach component targets multiple publics, from local to international, and offers various opportunities for alumni and community involvement.

For additional information on the conference and Trade Institute, please visit www.cemers.binghamton.edu or call (607) 777-2730.


Last Updated: 9/17/13