PERIOD 4: Global Interactions, c. 1450 to c. 1750
Key Concept 4.1 Globalizing Networks of Communication & Exchange
Global networks developed, but pre-existing regional trade networks also intensified, which brought
increased prosperity & economic disruption to those pre-existing networks
European transoceanic travel & trade built on previous Islamic & Asian knowledge in tools (astrolabe &
revised maps), ship designs (caravels), & improved understanding of global wind/currents patterns
New transoceanic maritime reconnaissance
A. Chinese: Zheng He, Indian Ocean (early 1400s)
B. Portuguese: school for navigation, first to West Africa, global trading-post empire
C. Spanish: Columbus, increased European interest in travel & trade
D. North Atlantic: crossings continued & spurred European searches for routes to Asia
E. Oceania/Polynesia: established networks not really affected
Global circulation of goods, regional markets continue to flourish
A. Europeans in Asia mostly transported goods within Asia/Indian Ocean
B. Silver from Americas affected commercialization/global economy
C. Europeans used joint stock companies (mercantilism)
D. Atlantic systems: goods, wealth, free & unfree laborers
The Columbian Exchange
A. European colonization of the Americas unintentionally transferred disease & vermin
B. American foods (potatoes, maize, manioc) affected Europe, Asia & Africa; plantations’ cash crops
(sugar, tobacco) affected Europe & the Middle East
C. Deliberate transfer of products to the Americas
1. From Europe: fruit trees, grains, sugar, domesticated animals (horses, pigs, cattle)
2. Slaves brought from Africa: okra, rice
D. Afro-Eurasians benefitted nutritionally from American foods
E. European colonization, agriculture, & settlements affected environment (deforestation, soil depletion)
Increased interactions expanded the spread & reform of religions, created syncretic beliefs
A. Islam developed Sunni, Shi’a, & Sufi traditions & continued to spread into Asia & Africa, adapting to
local cultures as it spread
B. Christianity spread throughout the world. Diffusion & Protestant Reformation led to diversification
C. Buddhism spread within Asia
D. Syncretic religions: Vodun in Caribbean, Sikhism in South Asia, cults of saints in Latin America
Merchants’ profits led to more taxes, which led to funding for the arts
A. Artistic innovations all over the world
1. Renaissance art in Europe
2. Miniature paintings in Middle East & South Asia
3. Wood-block prints in Japan
4. Post-conquest codices in Mesoamerica
B. Literacy expanded along with popular literary authors & forms in Africa, Europe, & Asia (Shakespeare,
Cervantes, Sundiata, Journey to the West, Kabuki theater)
Key Concept 4.2 New Forms of Social Organization & Modes of Production
Traditional peasant agriculture & plantations expanded, demand for labor increased=both fed &
responded to growing global demand for raw materials & finished products
A. Peasant labor intensified (Russian Siberia, Indian cotton, Chinese silk)
B. Slavery in Africa—slaves into household continued, export of slaves to Mediterranean & Indian Ocean
C. Growth of plantation economy increased demand for slaves in Americas
D. Colonial economies in Americas depended on range of coerced labor (chattel slavery, indentured
servitude, encomienda & hacienda systems, Spanish adaptation of the Inca mit’a)
As social/political elites changed, they restructured new ethnic/racial/gender hierarchies
A. Imperial conquests & economic opportunities contribution to formation of new social elites (Manchus
in China, Creole elites in Spanish America, European gentry, urban commercial entrepreneurs in all
major port cities in the world)
B. Existing political/economic elites fluctuated as they confronted new challenges (Zamindars in the
Mughal Empire, nobility in Europe, Daimyo in Japan)
C. Gender/family restructuring
1. Demographic changes in Africa due to slave trade
2. Dependence of European men on Southeast Asian women for conducting trade in that region
3. Smaller size of European families
D. Massive demographic changes in Americas resulted in new ethnic & racial classifications (Mestizo,
Mulatto, Creole)
Key Concept 4.3 State Consolidation & Imperial Expansion
Rulers used a variety of methods to legitimize & consolidate their power
A. Arts (monumental architecture, urban design, courtly literature, visual arts)
B. Religious Displays (European notions of divine right, Safavid use of Shiism, Aztec practice of human
sacrifice, Songhay promotion of Islam, Chinese emperors’ public performance of Confucian rituals)
C. States used ethnic/religious groups to contribute economically, but limited their political challenge
(Ottoman treatment of non-Muslim subjects, Manchu policies toward Chinese, Spanish creation of a
separate “República de Indios”)
D. States recruited/used bureaucratic elites & military professionals to increase central control
(Ottoman devshirme, Chinese examination system, salaried samurai)
E. Tribute collection & tax farming led to territorial expansion
Gunpowder, cannons & armed trade led to large empires in both hemispheres
A. European trading-post empires in Africa & Asia: profit for rulers/merchants, affected power of states
in interior West & Central Africa
B. Land empires grew dramatically in size (Manchus, Mughals, Ottomans, Russians)
C. New European maritime empires in the Americas (Portuguese, Spanish, Dutch, French, British)
Challenges to States
A. Competition over trade routes (Omani-European rivalry in Indian Ocean, piracy in Caribbean)
B. State rivalries (Thirty Years War, Ottoman-Safavid conflict)
C. Local resistance (food riots, samurai revolts, peasant uprisings)

Period 4 Key Concepts - Everett Public Schools