Fall 2016 Featured Courses, part 4

CHINA AND THE SILK ROAD

with Professor Sucheta Mazumdar

(CCI, CZ)

AMES 239, HISTORY 323

This course introduces the rich and diverse world of trade, religions, and cultures that connected the two ends of the Eurasian world. The course starts with survey of Han and Roman trade contacts, and Chinese connections with India via Buddhism, focusing on 7th-15 centuries CE. Covers themes such as the coming of Islam and Nestorian Christians to China, travelers to China during the vast Mongol Empire including Marco Polo, and voyages of the Chinese admiral Zheng He to Africa at the beginning of the 15th century which opened up the maritime Silk Roads.

 

INDIAN CIVILIZATION

with Professor John (Rich) Richardson Freeman
(CCI, EI, W, CZ, SS)
 HISTORY 219, CULANTH 215, AMES 257
Surveys the rise of civilization and kingdoms on the Indian subcontinent from the first urban centers of the Indus Valley through the establishment of the Mughal Empire in the 16th century. Uses literary, archeological, linguistic, ethnological, and inscriptional evidence on the diversity of Indic peoples and their complex social, religious, and caste integration into the major states and empires of pre-modern India; considers wider civilizational networks and extensions of the Indian cultural sphere into other parts of Asia; integrates a historical and anthropological perspective on various primary materials.

 

AFRICAN CITIES

with Professor Anne-Maria Makhulu
(CCI, SS)
AAAS 640S, CULANTH 562S
If the predominant mode of development in African cities is informal and unplanned giving rise to new modes of life, livelihood, and leisure beyond the organizing infrastructures of formal architecture and design in reality, the new African urbanism seems to give rise to two distinct conditions of life–the one crisis and the other ingenuity. This course is concerned to think through the paradox of rapid urban growth across the continent–from Lagos and Cairo to Johannesburg and Cape Town–and the fact that such rapid urban growth is taking place without the conventional facilities, infrastructures and technologies.