By Colin Mason
The peoples of Asia now make up greater than half the world's inhabitants. they're more and more well-educated, and winning in each region of recent exchange and expertise. Their impression within the remainder of the realm can be turning into better. Colin Mason offers a readable and transparent advent to their historical past and traditions, from prehistory correct as much as the current day. This completely revised, up-to-date and increased re-creation contains the mammoth adjustments and additions made useful by means of the fast-changing scene in Asia, fairly China's expanding prominence in international affairs. There are new chapters on Afghanistan and Taiwan, and on global warfare and its value in Asia, in addition to huge remodeling of the chapters at the international locations of South Asia. Maps and illustrations now additionally improve the textual content all through, making this the basic advisor to the background of a desirable continent and its peoples.
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Extra resources for A Short History of Asia, Second Edition
Season by season, after the city was abandoned, the jungle advanced across highly developed ricefields served by one of the finest irrigation systems ever built. Birds dropped seeds on the crumbling walls. Now great fig and belan trees, with broad, buttressed roots, perch fantastically over gateways, their roots grappling with carved faces. This whole fabric of slow decay is bathed in a green light of submarine aspect, filtering down through the canopy of leaves overhead. Yet the ruins convey a sense of futility.
The other great epic is the story of Rama, a legendary prince who, although he is the legal heir, accepts banishment for 12 years. While in exile his wife Sita is kidnapped by Ravana, the devil king of Lanka, sometimes identified as Ceylon, now Sri Lanka. Rama, going to her rescue, enlists the aid of the monkey king, who provides an army of monkeys to tear up rocks, earth and trees to build a bridge between the Indian mainland and the island. Rama crosses the causeway, kills Ravana, and rescues his wife.
Before this could be done a Buddhist religious ceremony, attended by two cabinet ministers and other dignitaries, was held. The chief Buddhist official speaking at this function asked the permission of Mae Phra Phosop to use some of the bountiful grain for fuel. He begged her not to be angry and visit them with her wrath. ‘Mae Phra Phosop has always provided us with food,’ he said. ’ The Ramayana, originating from the sixth century BCE, makes references to what seems to be south-east Asia, but these could have been later additions, perhaps in the second century CE.
A Short History of Asia, Second Edition by Colin Mason