Valerie HansenApr 24, 2020
The Year 1000
When Explorers Connected the World – and Globalization Began
Globalization is a modern phenomenon with a longer past than most people realize. As Valerie Hansen explains in her book The Year 1000: When Explorers Connected the World – and Globalization Began (Scribner, 2020), globalization became a reality a millennia ago when a series of unrelated events established the framework for a truly global pathway. Key to this, she demonstrates, were the Vikings, whose voyages westward from Greenland connected people from Afro-Eurasia to the Western Hemisphere for the first time in thousands of years. There they came into contact with peoples who already forging connections that could stretch across the Americas, as seen in the archaeological record today. The trade she chronicles involved many commodities, from cloth, beads, and amber to gold, ivory, and slaves, all of which often crossed considerable distances to find markets in various parts of the world. Hansen uses the development of the trade during this period to examine the establishment of both new bonds and new boundaries throughout the globe, ones that continue to define the world as we know it today.