"Over the last generation, historians have broadened our understanding of colonial America by examining the interplay of Europe, Africa, and the Americans through the flow of goods, people, plants, animals, capital, and ideas. Alan Taylor presents an engaging overview of this new scholarship, showing that American colonization derived from a global expansion of European exploration and commerce that began in the fifteenth century. The English had to share the stage with French, Spanish, Dutch, and Russians, each of whom created alternative Americas. Taylor also focuses on slavery as central to the economy, culture, and political thought of the colonists and on the importance of native peoples to the colonial story. This book describes an intermingling ofcultures and of microbes, plants, and animals from different continents that was unparalleled in global history."--BOOK JACKET.