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Illegal trade

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Chapter Summary

This chapter considers the Brazilian sugar trade that took place outside of legally sanctioned channels. This was a business that tried to operate beyond the reach of customs houses and officials, government regulations, and treaties between governments concerning trade. The chapter takes a very broad definition of illegal trade and treats it more as a category of analysis than a precise definition. For purposes of this analysis it includes an assessment first of ?contraband? trade, a category that includes trading along prohibited routes and in prohibited places, and the evasion of customs rules in various ports. The chapter then turns to piracy and privateering. However, it agrees with other scholars that the distinction between piracy and privateering is thin and often a matter of perspective between the perpetrator and the victim.

Keywords: Brazilian sugar trade; illegal trade; piracy; privateering



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