• Title, Summary, Keyword: Silk Road

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Silver Road Meets Silk Road: Insights about Mexico's Insertion into Silk Road Dynamics

  • TZILI-APANGO, EDUARDO
    • Acta Via Serica
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    • v.3 no.2
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    • pp.73-90
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    • 2018
  • The Silk Road tied the globe together for the first time by producing an early globalization phenomenon. Some consider that the ancient Silk Road disintegrated around the $18^{th}$ century CE due to the fall of the Muslim empires and the kingdoms between Asia and Europe. However, the maritime trade among East Asia and the Spanish dominion on the American continent reactivated the ancient Silk Road on some levels, and maintained trade dynamics until the $19^{th}$ century. This was possible because of Mexican silver and trade spots. Notwithstanding its historical background, Mexico seems so far away from the new Silk Road, or the Belt and Road Initiative in the $21^{st}$ century. Thus, this paper analyzes Mexico's historic and current role concerning the Silk Road. First, I conceptualize and compare the ancient Silk Road and Belt and Road Initiative through the lens of complex interdependence theory. I propose that, unlike the ancient Silk Road, the Belt and Road Initiative is a case of an induced complex interdependence. Second, I study the Manila Galleons' dynamics in order to trace the ancient ties with the Silk Road. I emphasize Mexican silver's contribution to East Asian economies and the importance of Mexico's role in the East Asia-Spanish trade. Consequently, I analyze Mexico's position in the Belt and Road Initiative. Finally, I present some concluding remarks about Mexico's role in the Silk Road.

The Original Concept of the Silk Road and Richthofen's Humanistic Ideas

  • KWON, YOUNG-PIL
    • Acta Via Serica
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    • v.3 no.2
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    • pp.1-22
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    • 2018
  • The concept of the "Seidenstrassen" (Silk Road) was created by the German geographer F. von Richthofen (1833-1905) in 1877. The "Seidenstrassen" means communication between China and the Roman cultural area. To prove the route of dissemination of silk, Richthofen not only focused on geographical substantiality, based on the routes of the Chinese Zhang Qian and the Roman Ptolemy, but also on etymological, historical, and religious sources. In fact, his Silk Road concept has the trade of silk as well as the humanistic ideas of cultural exchange. It is worth noting that in his book China, Richthofen presented the Silk Road as a space-time concept that considers the length of space as well as the length of time by highlighting humanistic examples that came into modern times through the Sea Route. Later, the English term "Silk Road" appeared in 1938, the Japanese term "シルクロ-ド" (sirukurodo) in 1939, and the Korean term "실크로드" (silkrodeu) in 1952.

EXPEDITION SILK ROAD: ART AND TRADE IN THE DUTCH GOLDEN AGE

  • SYNN, CHAEKI FREYA
    • Acta Via Serica
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    • v.2 no.1
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    • pp.49-64
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    • 2017
  • During the seventeenth century, Amsterdam experienced unprecedented growth and affluence, and the city developed into the world's staple market playing an indispensable role in Silk Road trade. This era, which coincides with post-reformation Dutch society, also allowed artists to produce art works depicting objects from everyday life, moving away from the earlier religious subject matter. This paper intends to look into seventeenth century Dutch paintings from their social setting, especially focusing on the influence of the Silk Road in the art making process. The paper also looks into the Chinese side of Silk Road interaction and discusses how Chinese porcelain reflects cultural influence from the Dutch. The paper incorporates Silk Road as a methodology to discuss art works departing from earlier practices in art history. This approach allows us to understand art as a product of multi-disciplinary, multi-cultural experience. The methodology invites more discussion on numerous art forms which emerged along the Silk Road trading route to expand and explore the history of East-West cultural exchange.

THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE SILK ROAD: THE POSTAL RELAY ROUTE OF MONGOL AND GORYEO

  • KIM, TSCHUNG-SUN
    • Acta Via Serica
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    • v.1 no.1
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    • pp.105-117
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    • 2016
  • The Silk Road named by Ferdinand von Richthofen was not designated as a specific route. A lot of East-West trade routes had already existed across the continent and the geographical scope and definition of the Silk Road is still expanding. In particular, the claim that the Eastern end of the Silk Road reaches Gyeongju is an example of this expansion. Burial treasures from tombs on the Korean Peninsula have already been identified as products from the Sassanian Dynasty of Persia, and various archaeological and epical evidences support this finding. However, the specific route where these exchanges were made, around the 6th-8th centuries, has yet to be identified. Maritime as well as inland routes can easily be hypothesized. The Silk Road was largely activated by the Yam postal system with the expansion of the Mongol Empire. It not only served as an effective pathway for the Yuan to rule over the Goryeo, but also connected the Eastern end of the Silk Road to Gyeongju. This can explain the situation since the 13th century. Therefore, this paper claims that the Yeokcham system had been operating on the Korean Peninsula since the Unified Silla Kingdom, the previous period of Goryeo, or perhaps even before then. The Yeokcham should thus be regarded as a prototype of the Mongolian Yam, and the Korean peninsula should be recognized as another route which contributed specifically to the development of the Silk Road, not just as a user or a beneficiary.

THE EURASIAN CORRIDOR THROUGH THE NEW SILK ROAD: DIFFERING GEOPOLITICAL PERCEPTIONS

  • ERDEM, CAGRI
    • Acta Via Serica
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    • v.1 no.1
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    • pp.51-67
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    • 2016
  • This article examines the nature of geopolitics and its impact on the international political economy of Eurasia/Silk Road. The research questions are exploratory and aim at revealing the differing geopolitical perceptions of the Russian Federation, the People's Republic of China (PRC) and the former Soviet Central Asian countries-Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Tajikistan Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan-within the context of an emerging "New Silk Road". Consequently, the main goal of this article is to contribute to a better understanding of what factors constrain and shape Silk Road initiatives in Eurasia. To this end, the article focuses on geopolitics and regional integration theories through a consideration of the Silk Road initiatives of a number of Eurasian countries.

The Relationship between the Introduction of Vegetables and Fruits into Korea and the Silk Road (한국의 식재료 중 채소, 과일류의 유입과 실크로드)

  • Kim, Jeong-Ok;Shin, Mal-Shick
    • Journal of the Korean Society of Food Culture
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    • v.23 no.1
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    • pp.10-17
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    • 2008
  • The author examined the origins, the course and the period of introduction of 94 types of vegetables and fruits mainly used in Korea. Then, based on it, the author looks into the relationship between food culture in Korea and those in the Silk Road. Among the vegetables and fruits, 57 types are not originated from Korea 17 types of stem and leaf vegetables, 9 types of root and fruit vegetables. 7 types of fruits, 6 types of seed, 6 types of pomes, 2 types of berries and grapes, and 1 type of nut. Their origins are spread in Europe, Southwest and South Asia but interestingly, they are located near or along the Silk Road. Therefore, it can be presumed that the vegetables and fruits were introduced into Korea from its neighboring countries by way of the Silk Road even before the Three Koreas Period and they were eaten widely in the Joseon Dynasty. Thus, the Silk Road helped some of the vegetables and fruits used in Korea to be introduced into Korea and eventually, contributed to diversifying Korean food culture. The cultural exchange is not one-way but two-way communication and the cultural exchange through the Silk Road is no exception. It is certain that by way of the Silk Road, foods and recipes were introduced into Korea from other countries but at the same time, Korean foods and recipes were propagated to other countries. In the future, more researches and studies should be conducted to find out how the foods and recipes are exchanged among the countries by the way of the Silk Road.

IN SEARCH OF PEACE ON THE SILK ROAD: FROM THEORY TO PRACTICE

  • TOKSOZ, ITIR
    • Acta Via Serica
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    • v.2 no.1
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    • pp.7-30
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    • 2017
  • Looking beyond the assumptions and arguments of commercial liberalism, which sees economic interdependence and cooperation as fostering peace, this paper demonstrates that peace as an ideal can be found in various theories of international politics. The author finds the commercial liberal perspective to peace to be too narrow to explain the opportunities and challenges posed along the Silk Road and proposes to look at the peace narrative on the Silk Road through the lens of other approaches to peace, including the more interdisciplinary field of peace studies, for a more comprehensive picture.

THE TURFAN MINARET INSCRIPTION: A SYMBOL OF CULTURAL CONFLUENCE ON THE SILK ROAD

  • VOSOOGHI, MOHAMMADBAGHER;KARIMIAN, HASSAN
    • Acta Via Serica
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    • v.2 no.1
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    • pp.31-47
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    • 2017
  • The corridors to the north and south of the $Takl{\bar{a}}m{\bar{a}}k{\bar{a}}n$ (塔克拉瑪干 Ta-ke-la-ma-gan) Desert are the most important regions for cultural confluence on the Silk Road, where caravans made it to the Chinese capital or the Korean Peninsula by the northern road, through the city of Turfan, or the southern path of Khutan. Being an important part of the Silk Road in the course of history, this region was heavily influenced by the cultures of various nations and ethnic communities whose merchants utilized the road to advance their business. The region's language, writing system and literary structure were also affected, so much so that in the course of its tumultuous history, many words, phrases and terms belonging to neighboring cultures found their way into the region, leaving their mark on its linguistic structure. Of the cultural exchanges that took place between the peoples of the region, conspicuous traces can be seen in the architecture, music, literature, texts, and inscriptions. Located in the Turfan region, the minaret of Su Gong (蘇公 Su Gong ) is host to an inscription which bears many signs of such exchanges. As so far no independent research has been conducted to identify the cultural, literary and structural features conveyed in this inscription, the present paper is an attempt to study the inscription in terms of the script, language and syntax in order to unravel the effects of cultures prevalent on the Silk Road on this particular inscription. This study mainly aims to investigate the linguistic structure of the inscription and the impact of the Persian language on Silk Road culture. In fact, we approach the inscription as a symbol of cultural exchange on the Silk Road and will focus on the tradition of Persian inscription-making which affected the Turfan inscription.

Polo: A Cultural Code for Understanding the Silk Road

  • KIM, TSCHUNG-SUN
    • Acta Via Serica
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    • v.4 no.1
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    • pp.125-146
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    • 2019
  • This paper deals with the question of the origin of polo. Although it is a sport that has been mainly active in the West since the nineteenthcentury, it is well known that British troops in the northern part of Pakistan learned about the sport from the local people there. Most agree that the origin of polo is Iran. However, in this paper, rather than specifying a specific area as the birthplace of polo, it is argued that polo was a cultural phenomenon commonly found on the Silk Road. This is based on the fact that polo has been known for centuries in China, the Korean Peninsula, and Japan, as well as throughout Iran, northern India, Tibet, Central Asia, and the Uighur Autonomous Region. Yet, the transmission of polo cannot be traced chronologically according to the supposed propagation route. This cultural phenomenon has changed over a long period of time according to the local environment, and the change was caused by mutual exchanges, not by one party. Therefore, there are limitations to interpreting cultural phenomena linearly. Thus, the origin of polo could also be identified with another area, namely Baltistan in modern day Pakistan, instead of Iran. These results support the argument that to understand Silk Road civilization, a process-centric approach based on 'exchanges', not a method of exploring archetypes to find 'the place of origin', should be utilized. Polo is undoubtedly an important cultural artifact with which to read the Silk Road as a cultural belt complex, as well as an example of the common culture created by the whole Silk Road.