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Commercial Agreements and Social Dynamics in Medieval Genoa is an empirical study of medieval long-distance trade agreements and the surrounding social dynamics that transformed the feudal organization of men-of-arms into the world of Renaissance merchants. Making use of 20,000 notarial records, the book traces the commercial partnerships of thousands of people in Genoa from 1150 to 1435 and reports social activity, on a scale that is unprecedented for such an early period of history anywhere. In combining a detailed historical reading with network modeling to analyze the change in the long-distance trade relationships, Quentin Van Doosselaere challenges the prevailing western centric view of development by demonstrating that the history of the three main medieval economic frameworks that brought about the European capitalism – equity, credit, and insurance – was not driven by strategic merchants’ economic optimizations but rather by a change in partners’ selections that reflected the dynamic of the social structure as a whole.
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"...Van Doosselaere had made a definite contribution to our understanding both of the economic history of medieval Genoa and methodological possibilities for the study of early capitalism and its surrounding social organizations." -Edward D. English, American Historical Review
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- Date Published: May 2012
- format: Paperback
- isbn: 9781107404298
- length: 280 pages
- dimensions: 229 x 152 x 16 mm
- weight: 0.42kg
- availability: Available
Table of Contents
List of figures
List of tables
1. From sword into capital
2. Genoa at the dawn of the commercial expansion
3. Equity partnerships for heterogeneous ties
4. Credit network for routinized merchants
5. Insurance ties for oligarchic cohesion
Appendix A. Sample of prices and income
Appendix B. Sample of long-distance trade participants' occupations
Appendix C. Commenda network graphs
Appendix D. Nodal degree distributions of commenda networks
Appendix E. List of top mercantile nonaristocratic families
Appendix F. Partner selection probability model
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