The Very First Event of Columbia Global Centers | Beijing Salon Series Held on March 19


The Very First Event of Columbia Global Centers | Beijing Salon Series Held on March 19

March 19, 2017

On March 19, Columbia Global Centers | Beijing and Hireading Club jointly held the very first event of Columbia Global Centers | Beijing Salon Series – a book panel on The Empire of the Steppes. Dr. LIN Nan from Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (CASS), who is also a Columbia SIPA alumnus, was invited to lead the panel. The event attracted around 40 participants.


The Empire of the Steppes is written by René Grousset, a French historian specializing in Asian civilizations. The book narrates the history of nomads on the Eurasian continent from the Neolithic Age to the late 18th century. 


“It could be hard when you first start to read it because it is a masterpiece with around seven hundreds pages. But if you are truly interested in nomadic civilization, this is a must-read,” said Dr. LIN after the book panel. “This book not only tells you the hidden history about the nomads, it also makes you to think more about civilization and the progress of history, even though it may not provide you precise answers. For example, how should we evaluate the gain and loss of the wars between ethnic groups in ancient times? How did religions influence the history and different nations? How should we evaluate the continuance and collapse of the history and culture? Going beyond these, how should we evaluate the East Asian civilization in which China played a leading role? Does it mainly consist of the agricultural civilization and Confucianism, or it combines both agricultural and nomadic civilizations.”


“During the panel, participants asked questions from different aspects such as politics, military, culture, religion, and law, and these all are parts of the history. Through this way it furthered our understanding on The Empire of the Steppes. Time flies, but the rise or the fall is nothing else than emotion. While China becomes more confident, more people are capable to evaluate the growth and decline of the agricultural and nomadic civilizations from a more comprehensive perspective, and we are able to think what China can do for the development of the Eurasian continent.”


“Perhaps, this is the best of times,” said Dr. Lin.


The Columbia Global Centers | Beijing Salon Series aims to bring together everyone to see the light of wisdom. We invite guest speakers mainly from the Columbia community including professors, scholars (including visiting scholars), alumni, and current students. Please stay tuned for our future event.