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Workshop Directors

Kaya Sahin
Assistant Professor, Department of History
Indiana University

Hendrik Spruyt
Norman Dwight Harris Professor of International Relations; Director, Buffett Center for International and Comparative Studies
Northwestern University

Workshop Participants

Christopher P. Atwood, Professor of Mongolian Studies, Central Eurasian Studies Department and adjunct professor of History at Indiana University (Bloomington)
“Partners in Profit: Empires, Merchants, and Local Governments in the Mongol Empire and Qing Mongolia”

Cemil Aydin, Associate Professor, History Department, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
“Transformation of Inter-Asian Regional Connections from Early Modern to Modern Period”

Hayden Bellenoit (in absentia), Associate Professor, Department of History, US Naval Academy
“Paper, revenue administration and munshi-gari in 18th century India”

Kate Boehme, PhD Candidate, History Department, University of Cambridge
“Capitalism and Inter-Asian Linkages: The Impact of China on Developing Business Networks in Western India, 1750-1850”

Edward Boyle, PhD Candidate, Graduate School of Law and Politics, Hokkaido University
“Bounding States: Mapping Asian Expansion 1500-1750”

Naindeep Chann, PhD Candidate, History Department, University of California, Los Angeles
“Searching for the Sahib-Qiran: Claims, Contestations, and Connections in the Early Modern Islamicate Empires”

Ji-Young Lee, Assistant Professor, School of International Service, American University
“The Chinese World Order in Practice: Symbolic Domination and Hierarchy in Early Modern East Asia”

John D. Wong, Postdoctoral Fellow, School of Modern Languages and Culture, University of Hong Kong
“Traversing the Laws of the Lands: The Strategic Use of Different Legal Systems by Houqua and his China Trade Partners in the Canton System”

Lan Wu, PhD Candidate in History, East Asian Languages and Cultures, Columbia University
“Kinship, Religious Institution, and Imperial Management at the Borders of Qing China”

Call for Workshop Papers

The Inter-Asian Connections IV conference and specifically the theme of Connected Empires is a particularly rich and fruitful avenue for inter-disciplinary exploration by historians, political scientists, sociologists and related fields. We particularly welcome, therefore, proposals that explore the multitude of ways in which early modern Asian empires have interacted at the material, cultural and political level. Research that examines such connections in a comparative vein would be desirable.

This workshop proposes to discuss the dynamism of the Asian continent in the early modern period, between roughly 1450 and 1750. The scholarship on the “European expansion” often misses the fact that this period witnessed an “Asian expansion” as well. Our objective is to investigate the contours and contents of this pan-Asian early modernity. Our aim is to use Asia as a zone that produced its own brand of early modernity. Part of this Asian early modernity was created as an answer to European incursions into Asia; most of it, however, came into being as a result of internal dynamics.

Topics of particular interest might cover:

  • Mutual exchanges between empires, such as the Ottoman, Safavid, Mughal, Russian and Chinese (Ming and Qing) empires and the Tokugawa Shogunate
  • The emergence of imperial and local bureaucracies as agents of management
  • The relationship between empire and confession building
  • Merchants and merchant communities as agents of interaction and exchange
  • Empire and state building
  • The regulation of international order across empires and regions