Textiles and Silver: The Indian Ocean in a Global Frame

  • Prasannan Parthasarathi
Part of the Palgrave Series in Indian Ocean World Studies book series (IOWS)


The chapter examines the textile trade in the Indian Ocean between 1600 and the present day through a global lens. The seventeenth to the nineteenth centuries marked the heyday of the Indian Ocean trading system, with the textile world of the Indian Ocean reaching into East Asia, Europe and the Atlantic—the silver from these three areas helping to fuel commerce. From the early nineteenth century to 1913, the Indian Ocean trading system was eclipsed as cloth consumption habits were reshaped globally. In the final period, from 1913 to the present, cloth production expanded in the Indian Ocean—although the region’s coherence as a trading system was lost through nationalism and, more recently, globalization; its regional economy is now enmeshed in a global trading order.


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© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Prasannan Parthasarathi
    • 1
  1. 1.Boston CollegeChestnut HillUSA

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