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The American Exchange - Term Paper Example

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Name Tutor Course Date American Exchange Introduction The migration of Africans and Europeans along the Atlantic Ocean and the various economic activities that took place during this period were the first indications of a global economy. Various paradigms have been used in the past to describe and explain the trade…
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The American Exchange
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Download file to see previous pages The American exchange was influenced not only by Europe and Africa, but also by Asia. Moreover, it had an effect on the Asian commerce. The American exchange not only led to commercial growth but also had impacts on environmental and demographic changes1. Discussion Colonialism had a great impact on the American exchange between 1500 and 1800. The kingdoms of Great Britain, Portugal, Spain, France and Dutch each sought to gather wealth for their countries through colonies and advantageous oversees trading arrangements2. This also involved frustrating ambitious rivals from doing the same. In the American exchange, America was the colony, which included the entire western hemisphere. This area attracted a lot of interest because of the sugar islands of West Indies and the silver mines located in New Spain and Peru3. The triangular trade between America, Europe and Africa marked the beginning of the American exchange. According to this triangle, colonies from eastern America furnished the raw materials while West Africa provided the labor needed to produce these raw materials. The mother country would in turn ship these manufactured products to both countries, that is, America and Africa. This partly led to the American Revolution as they protested against the colonial countries as they took raw materials from them, made them into finished products and then sold them at higher prices4. The Atlantic commerce paradigm takes into account coastal inhabitants of the three continents as they exchanged people and goods. In the Atlantic scheme, historians look at the contribution of the African kingdoms to the slave trade with Africans comprising a higher number of transatlantic immigrants compared to Europeans. The Atlantic commerce scheme also takes into account the Indian nations. The Indians supplied the American regions with skins and fur while they consumed manufactured goods and alcohol from the American regions. The Indian nations also introduced new agricultural products to the American farmers. Indian populations were also an important source of cultural identity and labor in some American regions. The Indians were able, until eighteenth century, to keep the colonialists at the coastal regions and away from the American continent5. Short-term consequences of American exchange The commercial system that existed at this period, with America producing the raw materials and colonial government selling them the finished products, led to the American Revolution. This was mainly due to the taxes on products such as tea, British manufactured goods and sugar products. There were protests by the consumers of the products6. The consumers could relate to the problems associated with goods from the empire. They were seen as a means of the colonial government exerting their rule on the American region. This was especially problematic considering they did not have representation in parliament back in London. Their mass consumption led to resisting of stamp, sugar and Townshend acts7. They also boycotted tea and pledged non-importation, ultimately declaring independence. The principle of demand and supply is credited as responsible for the revolution and independence as it placed them at par with the colonial governments. The American colonies mobilized in an attempt to put an end to imperial state meddling, which would ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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