The main point of this book is to show and explain the true life and culture of the Silk Road. Many people have the wrong perception of the Silk Road, so Hansen tries to debunk false thoughts about the road. To do this Hansen uses many examples from varies people’s journeys and uses evidence, such as documents, that have been found along the Silk Road.
One of the more common misconceptions about the Silk Road was that it was a long-distance trade of goods from one country to another. However, the majority of trade that happened was local trade. Many of Steins discoveries show that trade was done more locally. As Hansen, has said “This book draws on many documents to show that the Silk Road trade was often local and small in scale” (pg. 238). The documents that were found in the Dunhuang are evidence of the local trade. Rather than goods being transferred over long distances, religion was the one thing that was exchanged between places and people.
Another thing that people think about the Silk Road is that it got its name because silk was the most common thing that was traveled and traded. This would be a wrong perception. Although silk was extremely popular for most places, it was not considered a “good to be traded”. Silk was actually used as currency all throughout the Silk Road. It was such a popular form of currency that there ar...
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... and wanted to know more even when the chapter was finished. Other chapters I had trouble getting through it and wasn’t very interested. The thing that really kept be back from enjoying those chapters was the confusion of the names and places.
Just like most people, I believed many false things about the Silk Road. This book gave me a much better picture of not only the life along the road, but the culture that came with it. I learned more than I expected to by reading this book, and was surprised that I actually wanted to know more!
The Silk Road: A New History, discusses many things about the Silk Road such as, people, culture, economy, and architecture. This book successfully corrects false perceptions about the road, by looking at everything that has been found through excavations. Overall, this was an incredible book, and I am glad that I was able to read it!
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