april 2022 musings

ARCHAEOLOGY NEWS FROM CENTRAL ASIA AND CHINA + SOME THINGS JUST FOR FUN
ARCHAEOLOGY NEWS & PUBLICATIONS & A NEW GRANT REEXAMINING INFRASTRUCTURE PROJECTS IN MEDIEVAL CHINA

A post on archaeology highlights in Tajikistan from 2021: CAAL partner, Tatyana Filiminovaspoke about the latest findings of scientists from the Asia-Plus Institute of History, Archaeology and Ethnography of the Academy of Sciences of Tajikistan’.

Каждый год 15 августа отмечается День археолога. О последних находках ученых Института истории, археологии и этнографии Академии наук Таджикистана «Азия-Плюс» рассказали ведущий научный сотрудник отдела археологии, кандидат исторических наук Татьяна Филимонова и заведующий сектором археологии Нуриддин Сайфуллоев.

As reported in Archaeology: The Asahi Shimbun reports that a food pantry measuring some 37 feet long and 10 feet wide has been found at Kafir Kala, an eighth-century fortress on the path of the ancient Silk Road in what is now Uzbekistan.’

Combining palaeoseismic and archaeological records along the Silk Roads of Uzbekistan’ by Richard Walker, Department of Earth Sciences, Oxford, with participation by archaeologist Paul Wordsworthmultidisciplinary research looking at the multiple ways earthquakes affect archaeological deposits.

Bronze and Iron Age population movements underlie Xinjiang population history’ by Vikas Kumar et al., published in Science so not OA but you can read a summary at EurekaAlert.org.

Pazyryk Culture Up in the Altai, by Katheryn M. Linduff and Karen S. Rubinson, 2022 by Routledge. ‘This book reconsiders the archaeology of the Pazyryk, the horse-riding people of the Altai Mountains who lived in the 4th–3rd centuries BCE, in light of recent scientific studies and excavations not only in Russia but also Kazakhstan, Mongolia and China, together with new theories of landscape.’

Overlapping Cosmologies In Asia: Transcultural and Interdisciplinary Approaches from the series Crossroads – History of Interactions across the Silk Routes, Volume: 4, edited by Bill M. Mak and Eric Huntington. ‘Because of the deep pervasion of cosmology in culture, many opportunities arose for transmissions of cosmological ideas across borders and innovations of knowledge and application in new contexts. Taking a wider view, one finds that cosmological ideas travelled widely and intermingled freely, being frequently reinterpreted by scholars, ritualists, and artists and transforming as they overlapped with ideas and practices from other traditions.’ This book brings together ten diverse scholars to present their views on these overlapping cosmologies in Asia. They are Ryuji Hiraoka, Satomi Hiyama, Eric Huntington, Yoichi Isahaya, Catherine Jami, Bill M. Mak, D. Max Moerman, Adrian C. Pirtea, John Steele, and Dror Weil.

Hilde De Weerdt, Professor of Chinese History at the Institute for Area Studies, University of Leiden has been awarded research grants to ‘aim to examine how infrastructure functions on a cultural and social level: Who participates? Who benefits? What meanings are attached to different types of infrastructure? Can we write a regional history of China by mapping infrastructural growth and contraction?

NEWS FROM KYRGYZSTAN

Plans for an eco-city at Issyk-kul. One wonders how constructing a new city that can house 500k people will affect the archaeology of the area.

CHINA AND CENTRAL ASIA

Eurasianet.org published a recent study: ‘What Central Asia’s young elites think of China: A new study finds a correlation: the more education, the more positive one’s view of trade with China.’ Read it in русский or English.

Что думают о Китае молодые элиты Центральной Азии: Новое исследование обнаружило корреляцию: чем выше уровень образования, тем положительнее отношение к торговле с Китаем

Sinostan: China’s Inadvertent Empire by Raffaello Pantucci and Alexandros Petersen, published by Oxford University Press. ‘Internationally acclaimed foreign and security policy experts offer a unique perspective on China’s growing influence in Central Asia. Personal accounts and in-depth conversations with senior public figures and policy makers, traders and travellers, offer a deeper understanding of the transformative effect of China’s foreign policy vision on the ground.’

TWO FOR THE ROAD OF THE MIND

Bayt Al Fann is Arabic for Art House. We are a global home for artists, creatives and communities to collaborate, exchange insights and co-create the future of art and inspired by Islamic tradition.’ They include an article by Sophie Ibbotson on Bukhārā-ye Sharīf and the Holy Sites of Uzbekistan. Follow them in Twitter @BaytAlFann for some beautiful and educational threads on the coloured tiles and mosaics in mosques, rugs, and Qurans, and more.

A new season of The Wonder House podcast by Dr Sushma Jansari of the British Museum is out. This leadership-focused season contains honest and authentic discussions about the path to leadership, what qualities make a good leader, and how to cultivate these in yourself.

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