Author Archive | Isaac Land

The Coastal History Blog

Blog 26: “Conference report: Charles Dibdin and his World” Over Thanksgiving, I had the privilege to participate in what was apparently the first ever conference devoted to Charles Dibdin the Elder (1745-1814).  In what follows, I will not reproduce information easily enough discovered on the conference website, nor will I suggest that the conference reached […]

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    The Coastal History Blog

    Blog 25: “The Encroaching Coast” Most people wouldn’t associate northern Indiana with shipwrecks, but Lake Michigan has its share of them.  The J.D. Marshall sank in 1911, where it remains, just a stone’s throw offshore from the Indiana Dunes State Park.  It was a “sand sucker,” employed in pulling up sand from the lake bed […]

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      The Coastal History Blog

      Blog 24: “Port Geography at the Crossroads” Cloistered subfields predictably produce cloistered scholarship. Cloistered scholarship is, as a rule, quite dull.  Why, then, does cloistering exercise such a fatal attraction for so many academics? A new article in the Journal of Transport Geography confronts this dilemma in an unusually honest way.  “Port Geography at the […]

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        The Coastal History Blog

        Blog 23: “Sailors on Bicycles” The first time I considered sailors in port as an academic subject was back in 1993, when—as a graduate student in search of a dissertation topic—I read the first chapter of Marcus Rediker’s Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea. Reactions to Devil varied, to be sure, but few […]

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          The Coastal History Blog

          Blog 22: “The Trained Researcher’s Eye… and What It Misses” Many historians, young and old, nurse the lingering hope that their next round of research will uncover that career-making revelation, their personal equivalent of Carlo Ginzburg’s benandanti or Robert Darnton’s Great Cat Massacre. But if it turned up right in front of you, would you […]

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            The Coastal History Blog

            Blog 21: “The ‘Cosmopolitan Port Town’—Is There Any Other Kind?” Michael Pearson, in his book The Indian Ocean, emphasizes that littoral societies have markedly different attitudes from their more parochial neighbors inland.  He quotes Ross Dunn on the “cosmopolitan frame of mind” of Muslims in East Africa, southern India, and Malaysia and adds: “This was […]

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