Article

Dutch Atlantic World

Marjoleine Kars

in Atlantic History

ISBN: 9780199730414
Published online August 2011 | | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/obo/9780199730414-0106
Dutch Atlantic World

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  • History of the Americas
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In the early modern world, long-distance trade and European colonization brought people along the Atlantic Ocean in western Europe, West Africa, the Caribbean, and the Americas, into sustained contact. To study these connections beyond the confines of national histories, historians in the 1980s constructed the analytic category of the “Atlantic world” or “the Atlantic.” The “Dutch” Atlantic world refers to such interactions involving Dutch people, the United Provinces, and Dutch settlements in the New World. Until quite recently, the Dutch Atlantic had been little studied. Convinced that the Atlantic ventures of the Dutch did not amount to much, Dutch historians were more interested in the Dutch East Indies. Linguistic barriers kept non-Dutch Atlanticists away, and they concentrated instead on the larger British and Spanish empires. This neglect is slowly ending, stimulated by public debate in the Netherlands about the country’s role in Atlantic slavery and by an increased international interest in broad comparative studies. Moreover, since the 1990s, scholarship on the Dutch Atlantic is moving away from a myopic focus on the Dutch overseas and toward comprehensive histories of Dutch territories set in larger comparative frameworks. This entry will provide guidance in navigating works about the early modern Dutch Atlantic generally, as well as research focused on individual Dutch colonies and trading posts. Wherever possible, recent work is emphasized.

Article.  8047 words. 

Subjects: History of the Americas ; European History ; African History ; History ; Regional and National History

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