On Thursday, October 20, the Friends of the Michigan Tech Library will hold their annual meeting from 4:30PM – 6:00PM in the East Reading Room of the Van Pelt and Opie Library.
Following a brief business meeting at 4:45PM, Jonathon Robins, assistant professor of global history in the Social Sciences department at Michigan Tech, will present a talk on his first book, Cotton and Race Across the Atlantic: Britain, Africa, and America 1900-1920.
In 1902, British business launched an ambitious program to transform Britain’s African colonies into major cotton producers, in the hopes of ending Britain’s century-long reliance on the American South for raw materials. In Cotton and Race Across the Atlantic, Jonathan E. Robins explores the complex history of this British project, which brought European industrialists, African-American scientists, and African kings together to reshape the ways in which millions of African farmers worked. Robins will present an overview of the book, and discuss how his work in a number of very different archives and libraries shaped his writing process.
Robins is a historian of commodities, examining the connections between agriculture, industry, and consumers around the globe. He has published articles and book chapters on food history, agriculture, colonialism, industrial organization, and consumerism.