More Silk Roads

 Group Leader  Alan Freeland

The ancient trade routes connecting China, India, Central Asia and Europe were responsible for a huge exchange of people, ideas, technology, art and of course trade. Building on last year’s classes we will continue using Peter Frankopan’s Silk Roads books as our guide. We recap last year’s programme and focus more on the 17th & 18th centuries as well as on China’s latest initiatives. New members are very welcome.

Contact Alan Freeland – – 07958 141570
Meets Thursday, 1400 – 1600. Monthly
2019 Sep 26, Oct 24, Nov 21, Dec 19
2020 Jan 23, Feb 27, Mar 26, Apr 30, May 21, Jun 25

September 26th Welcome
Refresher / Summary of 2018/2019 – Silk Roads to 1433

October 24th Jane: Enrico Dandolo, 41st Doge of Venice 1192-1205 Refresher / Summary of 2018/2019 – Silk Roads 1433 to 1600 Personal experience: Alan’s Silk Road vacation to the “Stans”

November 21st Theme: Central Asia and reviving ancient crafts Discuss the book A carpet Ride to Khiva Review DW film on Uzbekistan

December 19th Theme: Silk Roads in the 17th & 18th The British East India Company 2020

January 23rd Technology innovation along the Silk Roads – Accountancy, Transport, Navigation, Mathematics, Pigments, Medicine.

February 27th Art and Architecture along the Silk Roads

March 26th Theme: 21st C Silk Roads China’s Belt and Road initiative

April 30th Visit to British Museum for Silk Road Art and Technology

May 21st The Caucasus from a Silk Road perspective

June 25th Class Member’s Talks. 10-15mins. Suggested topics:
• Abu Rayhan al-Biruni, Polymath 973-1048
• Al-Ghazali, Philosopher & Religious leader 1058-1111
• Tamar Queen of Georgia, r: 1184-1213
• Barbur, 1st Mughal Emperor 1483-1530

Pre meeting activity – Highly recommended

Sept 26th. Read Chapters 1: The Creation of the Silk Road; and 9 :“The Road of Hell” in Frankopan’s Book. The Silk Roads

Oct 24th. Read Chapters 10: The Road to Gold and Chapter 11: The Road to Silver, in Frankopan’s Book. The Silk Roads

Nov 21st. Watch: The people, history and culture of Uzbekistan – Traveling the Silk Road | DW Documentary travelling Silk Road
Read Chapters 1 to 6 : Christopher Alexander: A carpet Ride to Khiva

Dec 19th Watch: The Birth of Empire – The East India Company, 1 hour. video link
Read Chapters 14, The Road to Empire and 15, The Road to Crisis in Peter Frankopans’ The Silk Roads

Jan 23rd 2020. Watch: BBC’s Science and Islam 3 Part documentary by Jim Al-Khalili.
Optional: Read: Kassia St Clair: The Secret Lives of Colour

Feb 27th. Read the Met’s Art History Essays.

March 26th . Watch: DW’s: The New Silk Road, Part 1: From China to Pakistan DW part 1
Watch: DW’s The New Silk Road, part 2: From Kyrgyzstan to Duisburg. DW doc part 2
Optional: Read Frankopan’s New Silk Roads

April 30th tbc

May 21st. Watch: Caucasus: travel documentary (Azerbaijan, Armenia, Georgia)

June 25th
• Elihu Yale, 1649-1721, Merchant, President EIC, Benefactor
• Clive of India, 1725-1774, Commander of British India
• Tipu Sultan r. 1782-1799, Sultan of Mysore
• 18th Chinese visitors to Britian
• History of Jingdezhen Porcelain
• Or: Tea, Paper, Printing, or French Campaign in Egypt

MSR resources info

MSR info

MSR course Booklet

The programme pdf is intended to be printed on A4 paper, double sided, with short edge binding. The paper should then be folded in half to produce a four page A5 booklet.

Commodities Traded & Timeline

Useful Reading -The Silk Roads by Peter Frankopan

Video … NHK ‘s 12 part doc . Click here for complete series links