Friday, September 18, 2009

Genoa and Venice

    The location of Genoa and Venice were important and critical in the changes and developments of trade during 1260 to 1350. After the geographic changes that occurred in the west, a new struggle between the superpowers after Italy connection was corrupted in the center. Previous to their rise, they were known as the Arab Sea. Eventually, Genoa and Venice became extreme powers in the west in the Pax Mangolica south. The two countries faced minor competition from Milan and Florence; however, they remained strong and diligent during the trade years. An important factor for the rise for Genoa and Venice was the crusades. The crusades were also critical and tough problems within the aspects of trade and the routes.

    Genoa had problems during the thirteenth century to maintain their dominance. Their status as a leader of the world systems faced many problems. The establishment of the monopoly was destroyed by Egypt. The main purpose of this for Egypt was for them to become independent and gain aspects of their own personal independence. The fall of Genoa came about in many ways: the route through the black sea became less profitable, its monopoly on the western Mediterranean was less profitable, and their attempt failed. Because of this, Venice took over Genoan ties to Egypt. The question is: Did Genoa fall or did Venice rise? I believe that Genoa did not fall. My belief is that Genoa was placed in a bad situation and it was unfortunate that they had to go through the tough crisis. Their attempts on the monopolies failing crushed the critical arrangement and preparation for Genoa to compete in such of an advanced world system. The strategy by Venice to take advantage of Genoa was a move that was smart and worthwhile for them. This is a period of open competition. Both Venice and Genoa were on opposite ends of the west, thus, the countries were forced to be rivals and fight for the most within the trade routes and crusades. Therefore, when one fell, the other could only do 2 things; fall or rise.

    There were many lessons to be learned from Genoa and Venice. Some important aspects of the international system is the role of a trade fair site, become a powerful industrial produces whose goods are so desired that merchants will come from a variety of places, the commercial shipper is good, and a security system to protect the trade routes.

    In my opinion, Abu-Lughod is writing his response to Genoa and Venice in the matter of respect. I believed, through his tone that he really adored the history of those two great cities. Lughod stated in his notes that he was surprised that two cities were so powerful simultaneously during a critical time period. However, Genoa has more literature and is much more represented within the media and art. Why is Genoa more popular than Venice? I believe that Genoa is more remembered because it was a much more advanced city with the arts. Genoa was known to be a beautiful city, filled with art and creativity.


-Shaq Smith


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