‘There Is No “Single” Asian Past. We Must Always Acknowledge the Diversity of Experiences Related to Class, Gender, Ethnicity, Religion, Caste, Family and Kinship Arrangements, or Other Indices of Social Differentiation,

‘There Is No “Single” Asian Past. We Must Always Acknowledge the Diversity of Experiences Related to Class, Gender, Ethnicity, Religion, Caste, Family and Kinship Arrangements, or Other Indices of Social Differentiation,

‘There is no “single” Asian past. We must always acknowledge the diversity of experiences related to class, gender, ethnicity, religion, caste, family and kinship arrangements, or other indices of social differentiation, to fully appreciate the complex history of Asia.’

The area known to us as Asia sits on the eastern side of the landmass of Eurasia and is the largest continent, encompassing a staggering 17 million square miles. Asia is home to a variety of cultures, religions, governments and mindsets, giving it a wide base for a complex history involving largely different groups of people. These different groups, or ethnicities, all formed their own histories over time, which when combined together give Asia more than one past, they arise into an intricate and comprehensive history fashioned by a diversity of experiences. Therefore, there is no ‘single’ Asian past; we must delve into each single experience to gain insight into the prolific and wide ranging history that gathers under the one banner of ‘Asia’.

Each country within Asia has its own geographic links to other nations and cultures. These links were expanded on by exploration, trade routes and missionary ventures. These vital networks allowed cultural influences to travel from country to country, resulting in each nation in Asia receiving different influences from the next. In turn, this led to widespread variety amongst individual countries. These networks were invaluable to allow the able interaction of cultures, and formed the groundwork for a history of communication.

Each society within Asia was built on and shaped by the foundations of its own class, gender, ethnicity, religion, caste, and family and kinship arrangements. Each of these foundations, however similar, is unique and consequently produced different civilizations. For Asia as a whole being so similar, there were large differences in religion. For instance, the differences between the histories of Buddhism, which was founded on...

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