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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: 28 September 2021

Introduction

Introduction

Chapter:
(p.1) Introduction
Source:
Cigarettes, Inc.
Author(s):

Nan Enstad

Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226533452.003.0009

In 1916, Lee Parker left his father’s tobacco farm in Ahoskie, North Carolina, for Shanghai, China. He wrote sixty years later in his memoir, “I was fresh from the United States, sent by BAT, the British American Tobacco Company to ‘put a cigarette between the lips of every man and woman in China.’” Parker’s father had sent him to Wake Forest College in hopes he would, upon graduation, join the small white professional class. But even with a college degree, “jobs was hard to come by for a country fellow,” Parker recalled. He had heard that a buyer at the tobacco market in Wilson, North Carolina, hired young men for jobs in China, so he borrowed five dollars from his brother and made the journey to Wilson. After an interview on the tobacco warehouse floor that lasted “between thirty seconds and two minutes,”...

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