Paul Cheney, Associate Professor of European History at the University of Chicago, is a European historian who specializes in eighteenth-century France. Before beginning his PhD training in history at Columbia University, he studied political economy at the New School for Social Research. He has taught at Columbia University, the European College of Liberal Arts in Berlin and Queen’s University of Belfast.
Broadly speaking, his field of interest is the contextual study of social and political thought. In his recent work, he explores how eighteenth-century writers approached what is now termed globalization. How, they asked, was the outward extension of European commerce, particularly into the periphery of its Atlantic colonial establishments, inwardly transforming the material, cultural and political world of Europe?
- Revolutionary Commerce: globalization and the French monarchy (Harvard University Press, 2010).
- Cul de Sac: plantation life in eighteenth-century Saint Domingue (under contract, University of Chicago Press).
- “A False Dawn for Enlightenment Cosmopolitanism? Franco-American Trade during the American War of Independence," William and Mary Quarterly, third series, vol. LXIII (July 2006), pp. 459-484.
- “L’Histoire du commerce,” in Le Cercle de Vincent de Gournay: savoirs économiques et pratiques administratives en France au milieu du XVIIIe siècle, eds. Loïc Charles, Frédéric Lefebvre and Christine Théré (INED, 2011), p. 281-302.
- "Finances, Philosophical History and the 'Empire of Climate': Enlightenment historiography and political economy," Historical Reflections 31, no. 1 (2005), pp. 141-67.
- "Les économistes français et l'image de l'Amérique: l'essor du commerce transatlantique et l'effondrement du 'gouvernement féodal,'" Dix-huitième siècle, no. 33 (2001), pp. 229-243.
- "Constitution and Economy in David Hume's Enlightenment," in David Hume's Political Economy, eds. Margaret Schabas and Carl Wennerlind (London: Routledge, 2008).