Alessandro De Cola

Alessandro De Cola's research interests are African economic and social history, and economic anthropology with a special focus on pre-colonial and colonial money. He earned a PhD in Global Histories, Cultures and Politics at the University of Bologna, Italy, in June 2021. His thesis “Transitions in the monetary history of Eritrea: Colonial policies, military labour, and the Maria Theresa thaler (1885-1921)” covers the impact of Italian monetary policies in colonial Eritrea from the occupation of Massawa in 1885 to the end of 1921. He is currently working on his first monograph, expanding his PhD research by looking at the design of colonial currencies and monetary policies, the role of wage labour in the spreading of the colonial monetary economy, and the monetary circulation in the broader Red Sea region, from the second half of the nineteenth century to the demise of the Italian fascist empire in East Africa in 1941.


De Cola Alessandro, ‘Il problema monetario nella Colonia Eritrea: il Tallero di Maria Teresa nella letteratura coloniale (1857-1941)’, in Una moneta per l’impero. Pratiche monetarie, economia e società nell’Africa Orientale Italiana, ed. by Karin Pallaver and Gian Luca Podestà (Milan: Franco Angeli, 2021).

De Cola Alessandro, ‘The Maria Theresa Thaler in Italian Eritrea: The Impact of Colonial Monetary Policies during the First World War’, in Monetary Transitions: Currencies, Colonial Rule and African Societies, ed. by Karin Pallaver (Cham: Palgrave Macmillan, 2022).

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