Xinyi Ou

Review of Recent Research into Kushan Civilization

Trade, art, urban life and religion (particularly Buddhism and Zoroastrianism) all flourished under the great Kushan Empire. From the first to early-third centuries CE, the Kushan Empire was a notable world power that, at its zenith, controlled a vast span of territory stretching from present-day Afghanistan to Northwestern India and to the Tarim Basin in China. The Kushans prospered from their strategic location along the Silk Roads. As the middlemen between diverse cultures including Chinese, Indian and Greco-Roman, the Kushan Empire was a multiethnic and tolerant society. Research conducted over the past century and a half has revealed the true significance of the Kushans. Leaving behind no textual record of their own, much of Kushan history has been gleaned from archaeological, epigraphic, and numismatic evidence. Numerous new discoveries just within the last decade - the focus of this research project - have further clarified critical questions about chronology and genealogy, although there is still much to learn about this intriguing civilization.

Faculty Mentor: Craig Benjamin, History

Page last modified July 16, 2012