Please join the Division for Late Medieval and Reformation Studies for our guest lecture by Michael North, Professor and Chair of Modern History, University of Greifsald, Germany. He will speak on "Global Communication and the Rise of the Dutch Republic in the Early Modern Period" on Friday, February 22, 3:00 PM, in the Louise Foucar Marshall Building, Room 341.
From the late sixteenth to the early eighteenth centuries the Dutch Republic dominated world trade, especially through its trading companies, the Dutch West India Company (WIC) and the Dutch East India Company (VOC), which connected remote Atlantic and Asian areas to Europe. As the Dutch Republic was the leading European publisher of books, atlases, and maps, its news media, including pamphlets and newspapers, played an important role in this process. Furthermore, newspapers opened up the world for a growing readership and enabled readers to conceptualize the world. This lecture will argue that Dutch media not only provided commercial information on a global scale but also contributed to a “demystification” and rationalization of the world and thereby fostered Enlightenment.
Michael North is a prominent historian of early modern European maritime, economic, and communication history. His research and teaching interests include the Holy Roman Empire, the growth of consumer culture in early modern Europe, the development of German nationalism, and the conceptualization of the Baltic region as a borderland. North has authored nine monographs and edited or co-edited twenty volumes. His publications include Art and Commerce in the Dutch Golden Age (Yale University Press, 1997), Material Delight and the Joy of Living (Ashgate, 2008), The Expansion of Europe, 1250-1500 (Manchester University Press, 2012), Mediating Netherlandish Art and Material Culture in Asia (Amsterdam University Press, 2014, together with Thomas DaCosta Kaufmann), and The Baltic (Harvard University Press, 2015).