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INSTRUCTIONS for MSc thesis and grade registration. Starting your thesis work. Finishing your thesis work
One influential early text in sensory history is Sweetness and Power (1985) by the anthropologist Sidney Mintz. This book traced the social, political and economic impacts of a taste – namely, sucrose. Mintz showed how capitalism thrived on the sugar trade while wreaking misery on the Africans slaves who worked the sugar plantations, how sugar insinuated itself into the rhythms of the British workday via its use in tea and coffee, and how it ultimately came to be classified as a health risk (an ironic twist, since sugar was initially touted as a cure-all). Sweetness and Power opened a space within the nascent field of sensory history for researching and writing the history of particular sensations, or sensuous substances. This subfield has mushroomed dramatically in the ensuing decades to include such topics as the social history of spices (Schivelbusch 1992), salt (Kurlansky  2010), chocolate (Off 2006), colours (Findlay 2002; Pleij 2004), perfume (Dugan 2011) and other stimulants. A related trend has been the emergence of what could be called the cultural history of ephemera, such as darkness and light (Schivelbusch 1998), noise (Schwartz 2011), stench (Barnes 2006) and dust (Amato 2001), as well as visceral responses, such as disgust (Miller 1997: chs. 1, 4).