“White Gold” Sugar: Changing the World

About the Lecture

  • From the age of honey to the age of sugarcane, the “sweet reed.”
  • The rise of sugar and the cruel slavery, enslaved Black people in sugar cane plantations
  • The abolitionary movement and revolution in the United States, France, and Haiti
  • Abolition of slavery and the emergence of contract workers (new workers to produce sugar)

Mobility of Crops and World History

1. Tobacco: Is it god’s gift or smoke of the devil?
– Tobacco from ancient Maya times and cigarette rod made by baking clay
– Discovery of tobacco by Columbus and spread it to Europe
– From treatment to major products that increase health
– Politics of tobacco, changes in the form of tobacco
– Meaning of tobacco in Latin America (especially Cuba)

2. Sugar, ‘‘white gold“, changes the world
– From the age of honey to the age of sugar cane ‘sweet reed’
– The rise of sugar, brutal slavery of sugar cane plantations and importation of black slaves
– Anti-slavery movement and revolution in the US, France and Haiti
– Abolition of slavery systems and birth of contract workers (new workers for producing sugar)

Mobility of Crops, World History, and Festivals

1. Tomato: the bright red fruit that changed the diet of humankind
– An unfortunate plant shunned by Europeans for 200 years
– Hidden reasons why tomatoes have become a staple ingredient in Italian food (Neapolitan pizza, etc.)
– How tomato ketchup was invented, which changed the diet of people around the world
– Tomatoes, the largest produced non-food crops in the world
– Multimedia Video: Origin and Development of the Tomato Festival in Spain

2. Chocolate: Indulgence and Violence Surrounding Sweet Chocolate
– The history of chocolate that is older than the ancient civilisation of Azteca
– The Spanish sweetened the ‘bitter water’ chocolate
– There is nothing sweet about the farms and companies that produce sweet chocolate .
– Pathway to fair production and distribution
– Multimedia Video: International Chocolate Festival in Portugal

3. Banana: The fate of a fruit that changed the world
– The forbidden fruit that Adam and Eve ate was a banana, not an apple!
– The history of bananas that originated from Asia
– Bananas heading to the Pacific
– The humble bananas rebuild the empire
– Sorrow in ‘Banana Republic’
– Multimedia Video: Banana Festival in Colombia