The Atlantic Ocean Basin

Alan L. Karras

in The Oxford Handbook of World History

Published in print March 2011 | ISBN: 9780199235810
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in History

The Atlantic Ocean Basin

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  • Maritime History


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This article argues that historians ought to have two main goals: reconstructing the past in a way that demonstrates how those who lived life in times before our own understood and interacted with the world that they inhabited and ascribing meaning to these past experiences so that they are relevant to those in the present. Atlantic history, at least for the last few decades, has held out tremendous potential for modern world historians. This article describes expanding time and integrating space by considering the Atlantic world as a single entity from the time that the four continents bordering the Atlantic Ocean became linked though exploration. It also discusses community, migration, and the need for political economy; and globalizing Atlantic history.

Keywords: Atlantic history; migration; political economy; globalization; modern world historians

Article.  8654 words. 

Subjects: History ; Maritime History

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