This talk is in-person and open to the public.
The Jiankang Empire (a.k.a. the Chinese “Southern Dynasties,” 3rd to 6th centuries CE) was not the copy of Yellow Plains-based empires that it is often claimed to be. It was instead an innovative adaptation, arising out of its unique geographical and cultural circumstances. Foremost among these was its distinctive economy, far more monetized, commercialized, and oriented towards foreign trade than any other East Asian empire prior to the Song (960-1279 CE). This talk will elaborate on these themes, based both on Professor Chittick's book, The Jiankang Empire in Chinese and World History (Oxford 2020), and recent work on maritime commodity trade.
Andrew Chittick is the E. Leslie Peter Professor of East Asian Humanities and History at Eckerd College, St. Petersburg, FL. A native of California, he received his PhD in History from the University of Michigan in 1997. He is the author of Patronage and Community in Medieval China: The Xiangyang Garrison, 400-600 CE (SUNY Press, 2010) and The Jiankang Empire in Chinese and World History (Oxford University Press, 2020). He has held research fellowships with the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the Asian Civilizations Museum in Singapore. He is currently a Visiting Research Professor at the NYU Institute for the Study of the Ancient World, studying maritime interchanges between East Asia and Southeast Asia in the first millennium CE.