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Class Year

2010

Abstract

With increasing productivity and rising standards of living, a new spirit of consumerism reached Britain. After its entry into the Atlantic World economy, though Scotland never fully benefited until the 1707 Act of Union, all classes eventually gained access to a wide variety and exotic assortment of consumer products. Among them, sugar, valued for its sweetness since the Middle Ages, maintained a special position, dominating all exports from British America. Embraced by the British populace, sugar provided an impetus for colonization and required imported African labor. Sugar and a newfound consumerism at home drove the British Atlantic World.

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