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A Taste for ChinaEnglish Subjectivity and the Prehistory of Orientalism$
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Eugenia Zuroski Jenkins

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199950980

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199950980.001.0001

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Defoe’s TrinketsFiction’s Spectral Traffic

Defoe’s TrinketsFiction’s Spectral Traffic

(p.105) 3 Defoe’s TrinketsFiction’s Spectral Traffic
A Taste for China

Eugenia Zuroski Jenkins

Oxford University Press

Defoe’s fiction, particularly Captain Singleton, presents a fantasy of English commerce that rewrites the material conditions of the early eighteenth-century China trade to favor England. Defoe uses the chinoiserie “trinket” to imagine literature’s role in the global exchange of cultural values, and explores “artifice” as a mode of power available to English subjects in those exchanges.

Keywords:   Defoe, Captain Singleton, China trade, Americas, Trinket, Artifice, Fiction

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