The Yale InterAsia Initiative Online Lecture presents
Professor Arash Khazeni, Professor of History, Pomona College:
“The City and the Wilderness: Indo-Persian Encounters in Southeast Asia.”
The City and the Wilderness recounts the journeys and microhistories of Indo-Persian travelers across the Indian Ocean and their encounters with the Burmese Kingdom and its littoral at the turn of the nineteenth century. As Mughal sovereignty waned under British colonial rule, Indo-Persian travelers and intermediaries linked to the East India Company explored and surveyed the Burmese Empire, inscribing it as a forest landscape and Buddhist kingdom at the crossroads of South and Southeast Asia. Based on colonial Persian travel books and narratives in which Indo-Persian knowledge and perceptions of the wondrous edges of the Indian Ocean merged with Orientalist pursuits, The City and the Wilderness uncovers fading histories of inter-Asian crossings and exchanges at the ends of the Mughal world.