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Past Event

Saturday University: Goods, Ships, and Cultural Diversity

Oct 26 2019

Seattle Art Museum

Plestcheeff Auditorium

10 AM – 11:30 AM

The Maritime Silk Road: Goods, Ships and Cultural Diversity
Derek Heng, Northern Arizona University

The Maritime Silk Road connected Maritime Asia through to the East Coast of Africa. The Indian Ocean and South China Sea witnessed intense and vibrant interactions for at least two thousand years. Natural products and manufactured items flowed from one end to the other, facilitated by far-flung shipping networks and technologies. In the process, various religions, languages, political systems, art forms and more, were disseminated and absorbed. This talk will provide an overview of exchanges that occurred from around the late-first to mid-second millennium AD. A diversity of new textual and archaeological materials are now available to aid understanding of this important global system of exchange.

About the Presenter

Derek Heng is professor of history at Northern Arizona University. His research focuses on the diplomatic and economic relations across the East Indian Ocean and the South China Sea in the pre-modern era. He earned an MA in Art & Archaeology from University of London, and a PhD in Southeast Asian Studies (History) from University of Hull.

South Hall doors open at 9:30 am.


OCT 12

Silk Roads Revealed: The Begram Hoard of Afghanistan

OCT 19

Picturing the Buddha’s Last Moment c. 840 CE

OCT 26

The Maritime Silk Road: Goods, Ships and Cultural Diversity


Authenticity and the Reproduction of Buddhist Art and Artifacts in Medieval China


Zoroastrian and Manichean Arts of the Silk Roads

JAN 11

Silk and the Logics of Cosmopolitan Empire in Tang China

JAN 18

The 21st Century Silk Road: China’s Belt and Road Initiative



Full series tickets: $76; SAM members $43
Individual lecture tickets available at the door: $11, SAM members $7; free at the door for students with ID
Please arrive to your seat 10 minutes before the program starts, or your seat may be released.


The Seattle Art Museum acknowledges that we are located on the ancestral land of the Coast Salish people.