The Entrepreneur in History: From Medieval Merchant to Modern Business (EBOOK)

entrepreneurby Mark Casson and Catherine Casson

The history of entrepreneurship is an exciting new area of research that deepens our understanding of the roots of industrialization and economic growth. This book links entrepreneurship to business history, identifying the institutions which encourage entrepreneurship and emphasizing the importance of small and big businesses, from the medieval period to modernity. Covering the period c.1200-c.2000, this book examines entrepreneurship in a long-run historical perspective, investigating the characteristics of successful entrepreneurs and identifying the conditions which encourage entrepreneurship. The multiple case studies, spanning many sectors, highlight the achievements of a range of individuals, including media moguls, female investors and Quaker chocolate manufacturers. The entrepreneurial activities discussed include property speculation, which has been conducted throughout history by medieval monks as well as Victorian master builders. This book sets out an agenda for future research on the role of entrepreneurship in the development of the modern economy. It explores the impact of entrepreneurship on innovation and growth and displays the trajectory of a culture of creativity.

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On the edge of freedom: the fugitive slave issue in south central Pennsylvania 1820-1870 (EBOOK)

edgeby David G. Smith

In On the Edge of Freedom, David G. Smith breaks new ground by illuminating the unique development of antislavery sentiment in south central Pennsylvania a border region of a border state with a complicated history of slavery, antislavery activism, and unequal freedom. During the antebellum decades every single fugitive slave escaping by land east of the Appalachian Mountains had to pass through the region, where they faced both significant opportunities and substantial risks. While the hundreds of fugitives traveling through south central Pennsylvania (defined as Adams, Franklin, and Cumberland counties) during this period were aided by an effective Underground Railroad, they also faced slave catchers and informers. “Underground” work such as helping fugitive slaves appealed to border antislavery activists who shied away from agitating for immediate abolition in a region with social, economic, and kinship ties to the South. And, as early antislavery protests met fierce resistance, area activists adopted a less confrontational approach, employing the more traditional political tools of the petition and legal action.

Smith traces the victories of antislavery activists in south central Pennsylvania, including the achievement of a strong personal liberty law and the aggressive prosecution of kidnappers who seized innocent African Americans as fugitives. He also documents how their success provoked Southern retaliation and the passage of a strengthened Fugitive Slave Law in 1850. The Civil War then intensified the debate over fugitive slaves, as hundreds of escaping slaves, called “contrabands” sought safety in the area, and scores were recaptured by the Confederate army during the Gettysburg campaign.

On the Edge of Freedom explores in captivating detail the fugitive slave issue through fifty years of sectional conflict, war, and reconstruction in south central Pennsylvania and provocatively questions what was gained by the activists’ pragmatic approach of emphasizing fugitive slaves over immediate abolition and full equality. Smith argues that after the war, social and demographic changes in southern Pennsylvania worked against African Americans achieving equal opportunity, and although local literature portrayed this area as a vanguard of the Underground Railroad, African Americans still lived “on the edge of freedom.” By the 1920s, the Ku Klux Klan was rallying near the Gettysburg battlefield, and south central Pennsylvania became, in some ways, as segregated as the Jim Crow South. The fugitive slave issue, by reinforcing images of dependency, may have actually worked against the achievement of lasting social change.

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Frankenstein’s cat: cuddling up to biotech’s brave new beasts

catby Emily Anthens

For centuries, we’ve toyed with our creature companions, breeding dogs that herd and hunt, housecats that look like tigers, and teacup pigs that fit snugly in our handbags. But what happens when we take animal alteration a step further, engineering a cat that glows green under ultraviolet light or cloning the beloved family Labrador? Science has given us a whole new toolbox for tinkering with life. How are we using it?

In Frankensteins Cat, the journalist Emily Anthes takes us from petri dish to pet store as she explores how biotechnology is shaping the future of our furry and feathered friends. As she ventures from bucolic barnyards to a “frozen zoo” where scientists are storing DNA from the planet’s most exotic creatures, she discovers how we can use cloning to protect endangered species, craft prosthetics to save injured animals, and employ genetic engineering to supply farms with disease-resistant livestock. Along the way, we meet some of the animals that are ushering in this astonishing age of enhancement, including sensor-wearing seals, cyborg beetles, a bionic bulldog, and the world’s first cloned cat.

Through her encounters with scientists, conservationists, ethicists, and entrepreneurs, Anthes reveals that while some of our interventions may be trivial (behold: the GloFish), others could improve the lives of many species—including our own. So what does biotechnology really mean for the world’s wild things? And what do our brave new beasts tell us about ourselves?

With keen insight and her trademark spunk, Anthes highlights both the peril and the promise of our scientific superpowers, taking us on an adventure into a world where our grandest science fiction fantasies are fast becoming reality.

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Spy Letters of the American Revolution : From the Collections of the Clements Library (E-Resource)

spy

An exhibit of Revolutionary War spy letters from the Sir Henry Clinton Collection at the Clements Library, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan; Provides images and transcriptions of original sources in an interpretive, educational framework.

Contents: Gallery of letters, Stories of spies and letters, Secret methods and techniques, People of the revolution, Routes of the letters

 

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