IXth International Conference on Urban History

August 27-30, 2008

Lyon France
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 Session description

Cosmopolitanism and the city: urban production and consumption 1600-1800

Through the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, production and consumption moved onto an increasingly global stage. The established trade in European luxury goods was overlain by a burgeoning supply from the Orient and American colonies. Historians have emphasised the importance of global trade in stimulating economic change, but its social and cultural impacts have received less attention. This session addresses this by exploring three aspects of the inter-relationship between cosmopolitanism, production and consumption.

First are geographical and temporal variations in the impact of international trade on consumption practices. Here, we welcome papers that explore how particular cultural associations were used to promote imported goods, and the ways in which the meanings and uses of goods were manipulated by arbiters of taste.

Second are the ways in which the production and consumption of internationally-traded goods shapes the identities of cities where such goods were produced and consumed. We seek papers that investigate the construction of cities as cosmopolitan places, building on Jane Jacobs’ argument that identity is shaped by awareness of self and other.

Third are the cultural contradictions which accompanied these processes: particularly the emergence of nationalism in cultures of consumption, and of national schools of production. Again, we welcome contributions that investigate cultural conflict or convergence, especially in terms of the links between patriotism, consumption and the imperial city.

Session conveners:

  • Natacha Coquery
  • Bruno Blondé
  • Jon Stobart

Session type: Main

Classification: EM - Early Modern


Chintz, Pintado and Palampore:The Marketing and Market of imported Indian textiles 1600-1800

Author(s): Edwards, Clive 

De la séduction française dans les Pays-Bas du Sud (1648-1748): politique, économie, culture matérielle

Author(s): Van Damme, Ilja 

Enkhuizen aux XVIIe et XVIIIe siècles o u le destin contrarié d'une ville cosmopolite des Provinces-Unies

Author(s): Allain, Thierry 

Le « Renaissance Bazaar » et les Guise : les biens exotiques dans la consommation d’une grande maison aristocratique française du XVIe s.

Author(s): Meiss-Even, Marjorie 

Les circuits parallèles des toiles de l’Océan indien en Bretagne au XVIIIe siècle

Author(s): Le Bouëdec, Gérard ; Margoline-Plot, Eugénie 

More than just carpets? The consumption of oriental goods in the late medieval Low Countries

Author(s): Stabel, Peter 

Paris et le luxe oriental au XVIIIe siècle

Author(s): Coquery, Natacha 

Sugar and spice: shopping for exotic goods in mid-eighteenth-century England

Author(s): Stobart, Jon 

Sugar, coffee and tea and 'material modernity'

Author(s): Blondé, Bruno 

“As for European clocks, the [Imperial] palace is filled with them” Horology: a trade from Europe to Asia in the late Modern Age

Author(s): Dequidt, Marie-Agnès