Crossroads Research

Lecture Series: Cultural Transfers in Constant Motion: Case Studies of Books and Art Objects Traveling Between the 17th and 18th Centuries Along Maritime Routes, by Arianna Magnani

November 10, 2023, 14:00 CET, online via MS Teams

Amidst the bustling trade routes that intertwined the South China seas, texts and artistic masterpieces embarked on journeys alongside commodities, serving as conduits for the dissemination of knowledge and artistic influences. With the influx of Western entities in the 16th century, these cultural exchanges underwent a global transformation. This shift was propelled, in large part, by the religious missionaries who, during their sea voyages, meticulously collected and transported information and artifacts, fostering mutual cultural understanding.

Through a series of case studies, this presentation delves into the proliferation of Chinese encyclopedias in Japan, Manila, and Italy. It also explores two distinct art genres, illustrating the intricate web of cultural exchange that characterized the dynamic era between the 17th and 18th centuries.

Arianna Magnani is a fixed-term researcher (RtdA) in Chinese Language and Literature at the University of Enna “Kore,” where she teaches Chinese language and History of Asia. She is currently leading the Research Project PRIN 2022 (Italian National Relevance Research Project) titled “M.A.R.E: Manuscripts and Books from Asia Reaching Europe.” This collaborative project, conducted in partnership with the University of Pisa and Salerno, focuses on creating a semantically enhanced digital library that maps the circulation of Asian books from East to West along the Silk Maritime Routes.

Arianna’s research interests are concentrated on the cultural exchanges between Europe and China during the 17th and 18th centuries. Specifically, her work explores the movement of texts, the interactions of Encyclopedism and scientific knowledge, and the mutual influences that shaped these intellectual landscapes.

To register for the talk, please send us an e-mail.

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