In cooperation with Tansen Sen (NYU Shanghai) and Geoff Wade (ANU, Australia), and a team of colleagues worldwide, we are preparing an open access database introducing Chinese sources on maritime Asia throughout the centuries. It is also planned to publish a selection of most important sources as an online handbook, China and the Maritime World, 500 BC to 1900: A Handbook of Chinese Sources on Maritime History, with Brill Publishers.
In 2011, the University of Malaya Press published a revised edition of Wolfgang Franke’s (Fu Wukang 傅吾康, 1912–2007) famous An introduction to the sources of Ming history (Kuala Lumpur: University of Malaya Press, 1968) entitled Annotated Sources of Ming History. Including Southern Ming and Works on Neighbouring Lands 1368–1661”, 2 vols., revised and enlarged by Liew-Herres Foon Ming, an established Ming specialist, known for her excellent work on the military chapters in the official Ming annals. Annotated Sources of Ming History has been an indispensable tool for everybody working on Ming history including her relations with foreign countries and neither students nor specialists want to miss it. Similarly, no Ming historian would nowadays like to miss the open access db “Southeast Asia in the Ming Shi-lu”, designed by our colleague Geoff Wade.
Inspired by Franke’s work China and the Maritime World aims to provide not only historians of China and Asia but also world historians in general, who do not dispose of Chinese language skills, with an overview on Chinese sources on maritime Asia.
Many international scholars have been involved in this project for quite some time. It was part of Schottenhammer’s long-standing research cooperation with the Indian Ocean World Centre (IOWC) at McGill University, Canada.