The Silk Road was a network of trade routes that linked China and India to Europe for nearly two thousand years. It was also a Jewish Silk Road. It was populated across its breadth by Jewish traders who played a crucial role in transporting not just goods but also ideas between west and east. These Jews were radically shaped by, and in turn helped transform, the cultures of their Muslim, Hindu, Zoroastrian and Buddhist neighbours, including in classical and medieval India. At our Online Talk #TheForgottenRoad, author Jonathan Gil Harris looks at the pluralist, syncretic legacy of the Jewish Silk Road in India, where Jews have played a significant but largely forgotten role in the commerce, science, poetry and spirituality of the region.
Please note: The Zoom link will be shared a couple of days before the event
About the speaker:
Jonathan Gil Harris comes from long lines of migrants on both sides of family. Born in New Zealand, educated in England, and resident in the US for many years, he now makes his home in Delhi. He is the author of ten books, including the best-selling The First Firangis (Aleph Books, 2015) and Masala Shakespeare (Aleph Books, 2018). The founding Dean of Ashoka University, Harris now teaches in the English department there. His latest book is The Jewish Silk Road: Secrets of My Mother’s Chinese Tea-Chest.