We started the book in 2013, slowly, when we visited Latin America's largest port, Santos (Brazil), and Valparaíso (Chile). In the following years, we conveniently visited ports in Asia (Shanghai, Hong Kong, Singapore, Mumbai, Dubai), North America (Los Angeles and Long Beach) and Europe (Hamburg, Rotterdam, Barcelona, Marseille, Genoa, Piraeus ). We have yet to go to Cape Town and Alexandria in Africa, and hope we can also visit Murmansk and Sydney - all in 2021.
For the book, we have made a website: The Big Rough Sea - World Ports and Globalization.
Here is the pitch we wrote for our publisher in Rotterdam:
Thousands of years ago, international trade was conducted by land and sea from the ancient cultural regions of Egypt, Mesopotamia, China and India. In the course of time other peoples, such as the Greeks, the Romans, the Arabs, the Vikings took part in this early globalization. From the Middle Ages, international trade became entangled with powerful European city-states, sailing ships with cannons, the establishment of trading posts and the conquest of colonies, slave trade, industrialization and exploitation, steam shipping and diesel oil shipping. After the introduction of containers, around 1960, cargo ships became bigger and bigger, transport costs lower, with the result that production and labor moved to low-wage countries. Asian countries developed rapidly. The seven largest world ports are now in China. Rotterdam was the largest port in the world from 1962 until 2005.