Events in UCIS

Thursday, October 25 until Wednesday, May 1

8:30 am Exhibit
Travelers Along the Silk Roads: 10th Century to the Present
Location:
Ground and Second Floors, Hillman Library
Sponsored by:
Center for Russian East European and Eurasian Studies along with Year of PittGlobal and Hillman Library
See Details

Free and Open to the Public during Hillman Library Hours

The term Silk Road, coined by 19th century German explorer Ferdinand von Richthofen, refers to a loose network of overland trade routes stretching from the Mediterranean to East Asia. Textiles, gems, spices, animals and even religions were all exchanged along this vast expanse, starting around 1,000 B.C. and continuing for millennia. For much of this time, most Silk Road traders coming from western Eurasia were Muslim, and they brought their beliefs and rich culture to millions of people.

A Crossroads of Ideas

While the Silk Road was a two-way route, most of its movement was eastward, carrying Buddhism, Zoroastrianism, Judaism, and later, Islam.

By the 8th century, Muslims stopped thinking of religion geographically and began seeking converts along the Silk Road. The benefits of conversion to such a widespread religion were many, as Muslims preferred trading with other Muslims.

Islamic scientific and medical advancements also had significant impact on Silk Road travelers. Chinese Buddhist traders adopted Islamic medical knowledge in wound healing and urinalysis. Muslims brought India their insights on astronomy, including a skepticism of the geocentric universe.

Cultural Exchange Along the Route

Influences from Buddhist China and other regions also affected radical changes in Islam. In the 12th century, abstract Islamic art suddenly started depicting human figures, long considered forbidden in Islam. Murals showing Buddhist statues and Indian narrative artwork started appearing in mosques, and Islamic art exploded with new techniques and figures. Chinese technologies, such as paper production and gunpowder, were transmitted to the West. Iran’s art in the Mongol period (13th and 14th centuries) is dramatically influenced by Chinese artistic traditions.

The Exhibit Design

The ground floor cases in Hillman Library feature a map of the Silk Road from its Eastern terminus in the Chinese city of Xian to its western terminus in Constantinople. They also display the late-14th century Catalan Atlas, the most detailed world map of its time, showing key places along and major figures who traveled the overland route of the Silk Road. The exhibit continues on the second floor of Hillman Library in five thematic display cases:

*Horses and Dynasties: Cartography and Painting in China, 10th-14th Centuries,
*Alexander the Great, Kublai Khan, and Marco Polo: Confluences of Power and Exchange in Assia,
*Musical Encounters in the Deserts and Mountains of Central Asia,
*Explorations in Turkestan: Aurel Stein and Bamiyan, and
*New World Exploitation and the China Trade with Europe.

Monday, March 25

(All day) Information Session
Roadmap to Model African Union
Location:
4130 WWPH
Sponsored by:
African Studies Program
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Final preparation and review of your country's position, policies and aspirations leading up to the MAU Conference.

12:00 pm Lecture Series / Brown Bag
International Day of Remembrance of Victims of Slavery and the Transatlantic Slave Trade: Meditations on Historical Truth-Telling
Location:
330 (African Heritage Room) Cathedral of Learning
Sponsored by:
Global Studies Center
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For over 400 years, more than 15 million men, women and children were the victims of the tragic transatlantic slave trade, one of the darkest chapters in human history.
Every year on 25 March, the International Day of Remembrance of the Victims of Slavery and the Transatlantic Slave Trade offers the opportunity to honor and remember those who suffered and died at the hands of the brutal slavery system. The International Day also aims to raise awareness about the dangers of racism and prejudice today.

1:00 pm Lecture
Critical Research on Africa Series
Location:
4130 Wesley W. Posvar Hall
Sponsored by:
African Studies Program
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Dr. Mary B. Setrana is a lecturer at the Centre for Migration Studies, University of Ghana, Legon. She was appointed the first female lecturer at the Centre for Migration Studies by the University of Ghana. Dr. Setrana applies her multidisciplinary background of sociology, political science, linguistics and migration in her teaching and research that uniquely distinguishes her output. Published both nationally and internationally, Dr. Setrana is the 2019 winner of the US Department of state Award to represent Ghana in Delaware on the “National Security & Policymaking” program.

5:00 pm Workshop
Peace Corps Application Workshop
Sponsored by:
Global Studies Center and University of Pittsburgh Peace Corps Recruiter
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Make your application stand out from the rest. Attend this workshop to learn how to browse Volunteer openings, find the right program, and strengthen your application. You will have an opportunity to ask questions about service, learn steps you can take to improve your chances, and gain valuable tips to guide you through the application process.

Register to Attend: https://www.peacecorps.gov/events/19_vrs_app_pitt_20190325/

6:15 pm Workshop
Russian Conversation Table
Location:
Hillman Library, Room 201D
Sponsored by:
Center for Russian East European and Eurasian Studies along with Department of Slavic Languages & Literatures
See Details

Come to 201D Hillman and have an informal conversation in Russian with other Russian program students and the facilitator, Katya Kovaleva.

8:00 pm Lecture
Student BPHIL/IAS Global Studies Defense: An Exploration of System Justification in China: Public Opinion on Air Quality
Location:
4801 Posvar
Sponsored by:
Global Studies Center
See Details

Alyssa Martinec (senior, Political Science/BPHI/IAS/Global Studies) will defend her thesis on the global phenomenon of populations accepting environmental problems as an externality of economic development using case studies from Shanghai, China.