Tuesday, 31 January 2017

Archaeology of Inner Asia from the Eneolithic to the Early Iron Age

A very interesting international conference on “Monuments and Pastoral Regimes - Archaeology of Inner Asia from the Eneolithic to the Early Iron Age” will be held in Bonn, March 2-4 2017

Monuments and Pastoral Regimes - Archaeology of Inner Asia from the Eneolithic to the Early Iron Age

LVR-LandesMuseum, Colmantstr. 14-16, 53115 Bonn

March, 2-4, 2017

Thursday, March 2, 2017

Conference Opening
15.00 Ursula Brosseder (Bonn), Introduction

Session 1 Framework – Social dynamics
Chair: Ursula Brosseder
15.30 Joshua Wright (Aberdeen), Integrated Narratives: The local and the long term in three regions of Mongolia
16.00 Esther Jacobson-Tepfer (Eugene), The Texture of Life in the Bronze Age: The Case of Two Valleys in the Mongolian Altai

16.30 Nikolai Kradin (Vladivostok), Heterarchy and Hierarchy in slab grave society 
17.00-18.00 Break

Evening Lecture
18.00 Michael Frachetti (St. Louis), New model civilizations: Institutional Participation and the Formation of Central Asia’s Open Ecumene
19.00 Reception for speakers and chairs in DelikArt

Friday, March 3, 2017

Session 2 Metals, Connectivity and Elites
Chair: Henri-Paul Francfort
09.00 Nikolaus Boroffka (Berlin), Central Asia - Bronze Age metallurgy and its social significance
09.30 Yiu-Kang Hsu (Oxford), Charting metal supplies in late -prehistory northern China: reflections from the lead isotope analysis
10.00 Zhang Liangren (Nanjing), Prehistoric East Xinjiang, Gansu, and Southern Siberia: technological transmission, trade, and innovation
10.30 Coffee Break
Session 3 Animals and People, Lifeways and Diet
Chair: Ursula Brosseder
11.00 Gisela Grupe (Munich), Life-ways and diet, first results from the joint BARCOR project 11.30 Alicia Ventresca Miller (Kiel), Shifting diets across Xinjiang, northern China, Mongolia and southern Russia
12.00 Vincent Zvénigorosky, Eric Crubézy (Toulouse), Association between cultural and paleogenetical data in Mongolia and surrounding areas at the time of the Late Bronze and Early Iron Age

12.30–14.00 Lunch

Session 3 Animals and People, Lifeways and Diet Chair: Joshua Wright
14.00 Cheryl Makarewicz (Kiel), The human-animal relationship in ancient mobile communities of the Mongolian steppe: Subsistence and ceremony
14.30 Natalia Tsydenova (Ulan-Ude), The Eneolithic, Early Bronze Age and the adoption of pastoralism in Transbaikalia and Mongolia
15.00 Jean-Luc Houle (Bowling Green), Seasonal Gatherings and Animal Sacrifice: The role of ritual and climate in the emergence of societal complexity

15.30 Coffee Break
Session 4 Monuments and Landscape - Overview
Chair: Jan Bemmann
16.00 Tsagaan Turbat (Ulaanbaatar), New insights into the Bronze and Early Iron Age of Mongolia
16.30 Jamsranjav Bayarsaikhan (Ulaanbaatar), From Deer to Horse: Symbolism on Mongolian Ritual Stone Stelae

Saturday, March 4, 2017
Session 5 Monuments and Landscape – a close-up image
Chair: Tsagaan Turbat
9.30 Ursula Brosseder, Chimiddorj Yeruul-Erdene (Bonn), Jamiyan-Ombo Gantulga (Ulaanbaatar), Monuments and Memory – BARCOR
10.00 Jamiyan-Ombo Gantulga (Ulaanbaatar), J. Magail (Monaco) Results from the Khoid Tamir-Khünüi Project, Central Mongolia
10.30 Aleksei Tishkin (Barnaul), The Bronze and Early Iron Age in the Altai

11.00 Coffee Break
Session 6 Monuments and Landscape – The West
Chair: James Williams
11.30 Guo Wu, (Beijing), Khirigsuurs and the Bronze and Early Iron in Dzhungaria 12.00 Ma Jian (Xi’an), A study on figure-shaped tombs and slab graves from Yinshan Mountain
12.30–14.30 Lunch Break
Session 7 Monuments and Landscape – The East
Chair: Zhang Liangren
14.30 Kazuo Miyamoto (Kyushu), A comparative study on slab graves in Mongolia 15.00 James Williams (Beijing), Upper Xiajiadian in Northeast China: Economic and Ideological Connections to Inner Asia
15.30 Resumé and Final Discussion (Henri-Paul Francfort)
18.00 Dinner for Speakers and Chairs

Information on Accomodation and Conference Venue

University of Bonn
Pre- And Early Historical Archaeology Regina-Pacis-Weg 7, 53113 Bonn, Germany 

+49(0)228-736378; Fax: +49(0)228-737466

Due to limited seating capacity, guests are kindly asked to register in advance by sending an e-mail to ursula.brosseder@uni-bonn.de. Conference fee: 100€, student discount: 50€

Accomodation for speakers and chairs: Hotel Europa: (Thomas-Mann-Str. 7-9) http://www.hotel-europa-bonn.de/en/
Conference Venue:
LVR-LandesMuseum, Colmantstr. 14-16, 53115 Bonn

Sunday, 29 January 2017

Documentary "Saving Mes Aynak" now on Netflix

Saving Mes Aynak is finally on ! Find it here:

From: The Daily Northwestern,  by Madeline Fox, Campus Editor   January 24, 2016

Medill professor Brent Huffman discusses his award-winning film ‘Saving Mes Aynak’

Source: Brent Huffman
Brent Huffman
Madeline Fox, Campus Editor
Poring over National Geographic magazines and dreaming of adventure while growing up in small-town Ohio, Medill Prof. Brent Huffman never imagined he would be making repeated trips into Taliban-controlled Afghanistan to chronicle Afghan archaeologists’ race against time — but beginning in the summer of 2011, he did just that.
The documentary filmmaker spent three years traveling in and out of the country to cover the excavation of Mes Aynak, an ancient Buddhist city near the Pakistan border that has been purchased by a Chinese mining company for its wealth of copper. 
Huffman filmed the documentary, which followed the archaeologists working to save some of Mes Aynak’s artifacts before mining begins, over the course of a three years, all done in five or six trips of two to three weeks to the archaeological site.
“Looking back, it was a very ‘Indiana Jones’ sort of experience,” Huffman said. “It was really dangerous to go out there, but I felt the risk was worth it.”
The risk did pay off for Huffman. His film, “Saving Mes Aynak, won a $50,000 grant from The Reva and David Logan Foundation earlier this month, and was picked up by international distributor Icarus Films. 
Getting it to this point, though, was a challenge, Huffman said. Setting out with a grant from the Buffett Institute and without a crew — he said he didn’t want to put other people at risk — Huffman joined up with a local “fixer,” someone who spoke the language and understood the customs, and began filming in June 2011. 
Working without a crew, however, had challenges beyond simply the logistical.
“When you’re a crew of one, you feel that obligation and that pressure to get the story out there,” Huffman said. “If I was killed, the story would die too. There’s no one who’s going to pick up that story and finish it.”
Telling stories, particularly about people or issues he says are often ignored or misrepresented in the media, has always been one of Huffman’s passions. One of his first forays into filmmaking was a documentary he made in college about a maximum security prison in Ohio that focused on the individuals spending their lives behind bars and the corrections officers supervising them.
Growing up in the “one-stoplight, really tiny middle-of-nowhere, surrounded-by-Amish-country” town of Spencer, Ohio, Huffman said he was always more of an outsider, which drew him to stories about other outsiders, particularly marginalized and oppressed cultures in the U.S. and abroad.
He said he was interested in film while he was growing up, and his National Geographic subscription fueled fantasies of traveling and having adventures beyond his hometown.
After high school, he pursued his interests with majors in documentary filmmaking and anthropology at Antioch University in Ohio, which he capped off with a master’s degree in journalism with a documentary focus at the University of California-Berkeley. 
“I loved art and was really interested in anthropology — and still am — and documentary filmmaking really combined all of that for me,” he said. “It allowed me to become a part of people’s lives in a way that I couldn’t otherwise and to tell people’s stories.”
He’s also worked to instill the same passion for storytelling in students, those in his documentary filmmaking classes and outside them.
Hannie Lee (Communication ’15) began working with Huffman in January of her senior year, and is currently an outreach assistant working on “Saving Mes Aynak”  at Kartemquin Films, a documentary production company that’s been working with Huffman on the film. Lee said working with Huffman has helped her learn to focus on the little aspects of storytelling that make a large impact and to stick with stories.
“He is always like, ‘go out and shoot something,’ rather than think ‘oh, I can’t do it because there’s no story there,’” Lee said. She added that he’s also quite literally enabled her to “go out and shoot something,” lending her his equipment to use for a documentary project as part of her internship.
Huffman’s interest in storytelling, as well as traveling, would eventually lead him to China, where he and his wife, who is Chinese, worked for a National Geographic offshoot after graduate school. Although he came back to the U.S. after several years, teaching at the Brooks Institute in California and later at NU, China remained at the back of his mind, so when he read a The New York Times article about a Chinese mining company setting up in Taliban country, he decided to pursue it further.
The next six years, which also included the birth of his two children, would see this one idea from a The New York Times article grow into an hour-long film with nearly 100,000 Facebook fans and screenings across the globe.
“At great personal cost and risk he went and filmed in an area of the world that not many people go to to film in,” said Tim Horsburgh, director of communications and distribution at Kartemquin Films. “(The film’s online following) is really a testament to Brent recognizing that this is an issue people would be passionate about and sticking with it.”
Huffman himself is very passionate about Mes Aynak. While the film is finished, he said his work is not. Although the film “doesn’t end with bullet points saying this is what should happen,” his ultimate goal in making the film is to permanently prevent mining at Mes Aynak so it can be preserved and explored.
“Making a film, telling this complete story that has an emotional impact — when you cry at a film, it ceases to be just this point of entertainment,” Huffman said. “Emotion can drive energy and be a catalyst for change.”

Thursday, 12 January 2017

Buddhistische Erzahlungen Aus Dem Alten Zentralasien

Buddhistische Erzahlungen Aus Dem Alten Zentralasien:

Edition Der Altuigurischen Dasakarmapathavadanamala 

(Berliner Turfantexte)(German) Paperback – 10 Jun 2016

Between Rome and China: History, Religions and Material Culture of the Silk Road

Between Rome and China: History, Religions and Material Culture of the Silk Road

by Samuel Nc Lieu (Editor), 
Gunner Mikkelsen (Editor)

  • Paperback: 300 pages
  • Publisher: Brepols Publishers; 01 edition (3 Jun. 2016)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 2503566693

The eight studies in this volume by established and emerging scholars range geographically and chronologically from the Greek Kingdom of Bactria of the 2nd century BCE to the Uighur Kingdoms of Karabalgasun in Mongolia and Qoco in Xinjiang of the 8th-9th centuries CE. It contains a key study on sericulture as well on the conduct of the trade in silk between China and the Roman Near East using archaeological as well as literary evidence. Other topics covered include Sogdian religious art, the role of Manichaeism as a Silk Road religion par excellence, the enigmatic names for the Roman Empire in Chinese sources and a multi-lingual gazetteer of place- and ethnic names in Pre-Islamic Central Asia which will be an essential reference tool for researchers. The volume also contains an author and title index to all the Silk Road Studies volumes published up to 2014. The broad ranging theme covered by this volume should appeal to a wider public fascinated by the history of the Silk Road and wishing to be informed of the latest state of research. Because of the centrality of the topics covered by this study, the volume could serve as a basic reading text for university courses on the history of the Silk Road.

Table of Contents

    Greeks, Iranians and Chinese on the Silk Road                

    Palestine, Syria and the Silk Road                          

     Manichaeism on the Silk Road: Its Rise, Flourishing and Decay      

    Chang’an – China’s Gateway to the Silk Road   

    Religious Convergence in Sogdian Funerary Art from Sixth-Century North China          

    Da Qin 大秦 and Fulin 拂林 – the Chinese Names for Rome  
    Places and Peoples in Central Asia and in the Graeco-Roman
    Near East – A Multilingual Gazetteer from Select Pre-Islamic Sources             

    Some Thoughts on Manichaean Architecture and its Application  in the Eastern Uighur Khaganate

Monday, 2 January 2017

Last Chance: ‘The Ruins of Kočo’ at Museum of Asian Art, Berlin on view till January 8, 2017

Wood tile from ruin Alpha. Kočo, Xinjiang, China, 11th century.

The ongoing exhibition, titled 'The Ruins of Kočo: Traces of Wooden Architecture from the Ancient Silk Route', at the Museum of Asian Art, Berlin, will end on January 8, 2017. This is your last opportunity to check out the objects from the Tufran expeditions at the museum.
The temple city of Kočo (Chinese: Gaochang) is located near Turfan, in the Xinjiang Autonomous Region, China. More than 100 years after the return of the Berlin researchers from Central Asia, new discoveries are still being made from that time on. Painted wooden beams inscribed with Buddhist texts that were brought back by Albert Grünwedel are now being considered as pieces of a ceiling and a door. This discovery prompted a team from the museum to visit the temple city of Kočo, where they searched for wood architecture and analyzed reports and photographs from three Turfan expeditions, which gave birth to new understandings of the monastery buildings that are on display at the exhibition. The exhibition will also showcase unique objects found in the three buildings analyzed in Kočo, which will act as a preview of Humboldt Forum. Painting, texts and sculptures in Buddhist and Manichaean monasteries, as well as architectural elements of everyday life, shed new light on that era.
The exhibition is on view at the  Museum of Asian Art, Lansstraße 8, 14195 Berlin, Germany.