Category Archives: ports

Sinews of War and Trade website

The brilliant Rafeef Ziadah and Katy Fox-Hodess were instrumental in researching and building the project website, http://sinewswartrade.com/ The project website provides a wealth of information about maritime transportation and the surrounding infrastructures in the Arabian Peninsula. It mines both historic … Continue reading

Posted in construction, environment, free ports/zones, infrastructure, Middle East, militaries, political economy, ports, transport, Uncategorized | 2 Comments

BBC 3 Free Thinking interview with Matthew Sweet

Matthew Sweet of BBC Free Thinking was a brilliant reader of the book, having read closely and with an eye for fetching detail. We talked for about half an hour, and the interview can be heard here (my part of … Continue reading

Posted in capital accumulation, empire, imperialism & colonialism, environment, free ports/zones, infrastructure, labour, Middle East, political economy, ports, shipping conditions, transport, Travels, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Publication: A World Built on Sand and Oil

This is probably one of my favourite publications, in part because I was pushed and pushed by Lapham Quarterly‘s superb editors. The essay compares the trade in oil and sand today to think through maritime transportation, the building of infrastructures, the … Continue reading

Posted in capital accumulation, construction, empire, imperialism & colonialism, environment, infrastructure, Middle East, oil, ports, transport, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Medieval Arab Naviation

“More interesting is the testimony of Ibn al-Mujawir who reports that in 626 A.H./1228-9 A.D. a ship arrived in Aden from Qumr (Comoros or Madagascar); the art of navigation of the people of Qumr impressed him as superior to that … Continue reading

Posted in Middle East, ports, seafaring, the sea, Travels, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Shooting the animals

This post does not strictly have to do with shipping but it is fascinating and it has taken me on a tangent (and I love these tangents that end up weaving the world together).  I am reading the memoirs of Violet … Continue reading

Posted in empire, ports, war | Leave a comment

Silt

Silt Stephen Burt Things you know but can’t say, the sort of things, or propositions that build up week after week at the end of the day, & have to be dredged by the practical operators so that their grosser … Continue reading

Posted in environment, literature, ports, readings | Leave a comment

Arrival

15 February 2015 16.00 We have arrived too soon, because of steaming at high speed through the Red Sea, the Gulf of Aden and the Arabian Sea, in order for the ship to make it to Ningbo for an earlier … Continue reading

Posted in capital accumulation, infrastructure, labour, logistics, Middle East, political economy, ports, transport, Travels | Leave a comment

Fouq El-Nakhl: Masaculinities aboard the ship

“and in everything imposingly beautiful, strength has much to do with the magic.” Herman Melville, Moby Dick   The first incident of its kind happened last night.  Hopefully, also the last.  I was in the wheelroom in the dark, keeping easy … Continue reading

Posted in infrastructure, labour, Middle East, political economy, ports, seafaring, shipping conditions, transport | 1 Comment

Marsaxlokk-Jabal-Ali: Besotted with the sea

6 February 2015 “For a ship is a bit of terra firma cut off from the main; it is a state in itself; and the captain is its king.” (Melville, White-Jacket – did Conrad plagiarise Melville as I often think … Continue reading

Posted in Allan Sekula, capital accumulation, infrastructure, labour, literature, logistics, Melville, ports, readings, the sea | 2 Comments

Areia de Salamanca: The Razzia in the 16th century

5 February 2015 I borrowed Braudel’s discussion of the presidios on the North African coast yesterday to reflect on logistics… But as I read on, there was also the counterinsurgency element against the colonials (about which Braudel seems remarkably sanguine; … Continue reading

Posted in empire, imperialism & colonialism, militaries, ports, readings, the sea, war | Leave a comment