Abstract Prof. Michael Decker
Michael J. Decker (University of South Florida, Department of History & Institute for Digital Exploration)
Abstract: Empire of Plants: Farming and Trade in the First Islamic Centuries
While recent scholarship of the Levant of the seventh-ninth centuries have stressed continuity over change engendered by the rise of Islam, the retreat of Byzantium, and the destruction of the Sasanian Empire, there is evidence for significant disruption in agricultural production and trade in the first Islamic centuries. In this paper I explore some evidence for the decline of the production and trade of common and exotic botanical products, and the rise of others along with some possible economic consequences. Through these case studies I aim to better contextualize the changes which have been broadly described as the Islamic Agricultural Revolution.