Whaling was, in the words of one scholar, “early capitalism unleashed on the high seas.” How did the U.S. come to dominate the whale market? Why did whale hunting die out here — and continue to grow elsewhere? And is that whale vomit in your perfume? (Part 1 of “Everything You Never Knew About Whaling.”)
For years, whale oil was used as lighting fuel, industrial lubricant, and the main ingredient in (yum!) margarine. Whale meat was also on a few menus. But today, demand for whale products is at a historic low. And yet some countries still have a whaling industry. We find out why. (Part 2 of “Everything You Never Knew About Whaling.”)
In the final episode of our whale series, we learn about fecal plumes, shipping noise, and why Moby-Dick is still worth reading. (Part 3 of “Everything You Never Knew About Whaling.”)
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