Eighteenth-century Textile Artisans and Guilds and the World Economy

Nelly Hanna

in Ottoman Egypt and the Emergence of the Modern World

Published by American University in Cairo Press

Published in print November 2014 | ISBN: 9789774166648
Published online May 2015 | e-ISBN: 9781617975905 | DOI:
Eighteenth-century Textile Artisans and Guilds and the World Economy

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This chapter challenges the idea that artisans and guilds were “outside history,” or a stationary group unaffected by the changing regional and world conditions. It also challenges the idea that local crafts were in decline during this period. Taking textile workers as an example of artisans whose product was much in demand in the world market, it shows that, on the one hand, certain types of local textiles reached markets in Asia, Europe, and America, especially the coarse cloth worn mainly by modest populations in the eighteenth century. On the other hand, these artisans were also innovating guild practices in order to make and sell the printed cottons that were becoming fashionable worldwide.

Keywords: market; ‘outside history’; local textiles; coarse cloth

Chapter.  10513 words. 

Subjects: Modern History (1700 to 1945)

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