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Cigarettes, Inc.An Intimate History of Corporate Imperialism$
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Nan Enstad

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780226533285

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: May 2019

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226533452.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CHICAGO SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.chicago.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Chicago Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CHSO for personal use.date: 18 September 2021

The Bright Leaf Tobacco Network

The Bright Leaf Tobacco Network

(p.86) 3 The Bright Leaf Tobacco Network
Cigarettes, Inc.

Nan Enstad

University of Chicago Press

This chapter tells the story of a corporate network that stretched between the US South and China and tracks their development of the corporate cigarette industry in both countries. As bright leaf agriculture expanded, first in the upper South but eventually to China as well, the industry drew on Jim Crow segregation rather than expertise to manage access to jobs on the network. The bright leaf network managed the movement of personnel, materials and ideas between the two countries, including bright leaf tobacco, cigarettes, Southern foodways, and understandings of how to grow tobacco and manage servants. Following Henry and Hattie Gregory, the chapter explores how tactics from Jim Crow became translated into mechanisms for organizing Chinese agriculture as well as Chinese servants in the foreign home. The bright leaf pipeline created a business culture in BAT-China dominated by Southerners, quite segregated from the locations and practices of the Chinese business culture of BAT. The foreign home played an important role in the development of this business culture, as Hattie Gregory drew on her experience with African American domestic servants in managing Chinese servants.

Keywords:   bright leaf tobacco, segregation, U.S. South, China, business culture, British American Tobacco Company, agriculture, food, servant, network

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