According to the records, Australia was first discovered by Dutch explorers in the early 17th century. So how did 1,000-year-old copper coins from a former African sultanate end up on a remote Australian beach?
An Australian anthropologist, Ian McIntosh, is determined to get to the bottom of the mystery, which began when five coins were found buried in sand by a soldier patrolling the Wessel Islands off the continent’s north coast in 1944, two years after Darwin was bombed by the Japanese.
Maurie Isenberg, who was manning a radar station on the uninhabited but strategically important islands, stored the coins in a tin, and on coming across them again in 1979, sent them to a museum.
They were identified as originating in the former sultanate of Kilwa, near present-day Tanzania, and dated to as far back as the 900s.
So far, so mysterious, for according to the history books the first outsider to set foot on Australian soil was a Dutchman, Willem Janszoon, who landed in present-day north Queensland in 1606 – more than 160 years before Captain James Cook arrived and claimed the continent for the British throne.
Dr McIntosh believes that the coins, which have apparently been gathering dust in the museum, could rewrite Australian history, indicating that the country was visited long before Europeans arrived.
Now a World Heritage ruin, Kilwa was once a flourishing trade port and in the 13th to 16th centuries had links to India. Its trade – in gold, silver, pearls, perfumes, Arabian stoneware, Persian ceramics and Chinese porcelain – made it one of the most influential towns in East Africa.
To those of us who are well familiar with African history, this comes as no surprise.
Yes this is news (this is my first time hearing about these coins) but considering how far and wide Africans travelled at the time Europeans were still in the backwaters, it is not strange that they (at least their coins) reached Australia.
What I detest is this insistence on “discovery”, the indigenous people of Australia have been there for a while, neither Africans or Europeans (or people from the Middle East who have played roles in East African history) “discovered” Australia.
God I love her work, and how she uses elements of historical Chinese fashion and art to create these amazing, sculptural pieces
To the tune of Frère Jacques:
Shang, Zhou, Qin, Han,
Shang, Zhou, Qin, Han,
Sui, Tang, Song,
Sui, Tang, Song,
Yuan, Ming, Qing, Republic~
Yuan, Ming, Qing, Republic~
Mao Zedong (Deng!)
Mao Zedong (Deng!)
wow, embarrassingly, this totally helps. except it skips some…
Okay just for you. Here are the posts I wrote on it on Beyond Victoriana,
Here are the books, articles and things I read when I wrote the posts;
Snow Philip (1988), The Star Raft: China’s Encounter with Africa
Liu Gang (2007), The Chinese Inventor of Bi-Hemispherical World Map, e-Perimetron, Vol. 2, No. 3, pp. 185-193
Shen John (1995), ‘New Thoughts on the use of Chinese document in the Reconstruction of Early Swahili History’, History in Africa, Vol. 22, pp. 349-358
Smidt Wolbert, ‘A Chinese in the Nubian and Abyssinian Kingdoms (8th Century): The visit of Du Huan to Molin-guo and Laobosa’
Wilensky Julie (2002), ‘The Magical Kunlun and ‘Devil Slaves’ Chinese Perception of Dark People and Africa before 1500′, Sino-Platonic Papers, Number 122
Here is the early Chinese map of Africa,
I got this from Cape Slavery Heritage, an amazing blog on South Africa’s diverse histories that seems to be down or deleted now. It is a “large silk copy of the old Chinese map which accurately depicts South Africa” and suggests that Chinese explorers not only round the cape but also travelled in the interior.
Here are links on the search for Zheng He’s shipwrecked ship;
And finally, something about the Kenyans with Chinese ancestry and miscellaneous stuff;
Famao: African-Chinese clan (this is a forum but the discussion is good)
Finally finally, I recommend reading ibn Battuta’s compilation of his travels! He doesn’t go to China but he mentions meeting a Somali man in, I think, Maldives who had been to China IIRC. So read ibn Battuta just for this.
Made rebloggable by request!
Archery - Tulane
I also don’t trust white people in this country because of the Pacific Islander slave trade that was going on in Australia from 1842-1904, which til this day is either ignored or in describing it, words like recruited, encouraged and employed are used. When in reality South Sea Islanders were coerced, kidnapped, forced, and sold. Slavery by any other name, is still slavery.
And the only reason this stopped is because of the ‘white Australia’ policy that was brought into place to try and keep Australia for white people. When thousands of the men and women who were stolen from their homes, were returned, some being returned to the wrong Island (because brown and black people are all the same to white people) and others dying on the journey home.
Also, to add on to this is that during the period of labour that was forced onto Pacific Islanders, many of those people did settle down and have families with Indigenous communities in the places that they were made to work.
They had already built new lives for themselves, with the means that were given to them- they had families and new identities, so when the white supremacist policy took place, not only were these people displaced AGAIN but they were FORCED to leave their families AGAIN there for harming their own community but also the Indigenous communities in those areas.
Australian history is a load of fuckery and so is the federation that this nation is founded upon and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise
you can attain native fluency when people pull their eyes up at the corners and call you “Ching chong Chinese girl” when white people tell you “go back where you came from” when the asshole on the bus tells you your breakfast “smells like shit” when you’re too embarrassed to speak your native tongue in public with your parents when you’ve lost so much of it you can’t be called “fluent” anymore and instead have to sit by and watch pretentious white boys write papers in Chinese and Japanese and get called “cultured” “educated” “worldly” when you’re too embarrassed to introduce your aunt to your friends because she doesn’t speak their language when you’ve forgotten all the words. when you try to study it in college to pick it up again. when it’s not your area of focus or study and you speak it anyway, you whisper it in your head and translate coworker conversations, looking for the right phrasing. when you smile at the lady who works the dumpling cart, call her aiyi and have her eyes crinkle in a smile only shared between two people of the same background, to have her tell you that you’re welcome back any time in a warm voice like your mother’s.
1914. Life Magazine.
seriously though don’t remove safety equipment in a lab you are terrible scientists please rethink this
they are making out for science why are you so judgey
Note: there is also just as long of a history of the changeability of gender in Chinese history.
But. Yeah. This book may be of interest to some.
It really shouldn’t take a “new study” for Chinese scholars to make such a well-known point, but I guess that’s where we’re at so why not. Chinese history, with its long dynastic succession, has seen many ebbs and flows regarding prevailing sexual attitudes, but most have fallen along the lines of what might be described as a liberal and pragmatic climate of live and let live. Biyuti’s also right that gender-maleability has been a feature of Chinese literature for millenia (also Chinese philosophy and mysticism; because ultimately in the quest for Taoist-Buddhist liberation, one transcends gender).
There have been gay emperors, gay empresses, gay Dalai Lamas, gay warlords, gay imperial concubines, gay imperial eunuchs, gay court ministers, gay poets, gay folk heroes, and gay everything else you can possibly think of, because we’re talking about human beings. You may recall the last emperor of China, Puyi, is believed to have been gay (to some extent or other), and his wife, Empress Wanrong, had a lesbian affair with the swashbuckling pilot-spy Jin Bihui (who was eventually executed as a traitor; to be clear, not for sleeping with the empress but for collaborating with imperial Japan). I grew up with all these stories and ideas of gender-bending and they were not seen as a big deal, just as part of the human story.
I hope errybody enjoyed my posts about Wu Zetian! To recap, here they are!
This video makes The Sorcerer and the White Snake (《白蛇传说之法海》) look so cool! Do not be fooled by this awesome, atmospheric trailer! 《白蛇传说之法海》 is a disappointing movie with a terrible case of ‘all ladies are evil demons’ and it makes me sad cause I love this legend a lot.
Bai Su Zhen and Xu Xian
The Lady White Snake, Bai Su Zhen, and the Scholar, Xu Xian loved each other deeply. All was well until the monk, Fa Hai, tried to separate them.
Bai Su Zhen remained defiant; “What right have you, to separate two souls in love?”
To which the monk replied, “By the laws of nature, and heaven’s edict.” So saying, he sealed her away in the Lei Feng Pagoda.
For the Traversing Realms print compliation. I chose to illustrate a folktale which, for obvious reasons, means a lot to me. Prints are available online through the link.
[Black and white photograph of eight woman in victorian dress, both male and female, posed with glasses and bottles of wine]
Queer Avoidance, Vocabulary, Euphemisms, and the Language of Lesbians
9 Ways the Early Twentieth-Century Newspaper
Reviewed Broadway Plays & Avoided Saying the “L” Word
- “A Twisted Relationship” - New York Times, 1926
- “A Warped Infatuation” - New York Times, 1926
- “Tormenting Impulses” - World, 1926
- “Bondage” - World, 1926
- “The Poisonous Serpents Spell of Decadent Women” - Evening News, 1926
- “A Cancerous Growth” - Daily News, 1926
- “A Monstrous Sexual Perversion” - New York Evening Journal, 1934
- “L—N” - New York Herald Tribune, 1934
- “A Naughty Word” - New York Herald Tribune, 1934
16 (Ninetieth/Twentieth Century) Euphemisms for Lesbian Relationships
- Sentimental Friends
- Special Friends
- Romantic Friends
- Two Hearts in Counsel
- Love of Kindred Spirits
- Boston Marriages
- Roaring Girl
- Female Adventurer
Richards, Dell. Lesbian Lists: A Look at Lesbian Culture, History, and Personalities. Boston: Alyson Publications, 1990
Taking note of this because of Reasons.
By: Jue Liu (刘珏)
Being a couch potato can finally be a good thing, at least for numerous young Chinese fans of American television shows (美剧迷 Měijù Mí). These eager viewers claim it’s a shortcut through excruciating reading comprehensions and vocabulary exercises to achieve English proficiency. In order to do so, they have bought “Friends” DVD box sets, and play episode after episode of “Grey’s Anatomy” on their iPhones. Whether it’s at home or on the subway, they are “studying” hard. In the same spirit, we have compiled a list of popular Chinese television shows for Chinese learners or prospective learners. At the same time being entertained with some Chinese drama, your Chinese proficiency may also be magically improved!
Some of these look good.
And they have the time travel thing as well, except in that drama it is a woman that travels back in time (*and* into the body of the teenage daughter of a Manchu general) which is winning imo.
I love The Life of Zhenhuan (《甄嬛传》), it’s super bitchface.
Also the article reckons it attracted “female fans across the country” but tbh I know heaps of guys who watched it, too.