The Worldly Engagement of Maritime South China: A Strategic Cultural Mapping
South China has long engaged with the circulation of goods, people, and ideas along the Maritime Silk Road. These movements over the centuries have bridged continental divides from China to Africa. In this talk, Helen F. Siu discusses the historical layers of economic and cultural resources, multi-ethnic identities in trading hubs, and strategic footprints of mobile populations between south China and the inter-Asian world. Siu also discusses China’s ambitious Belt and Road initiative, which stresses the building of hardware and infrastructure but also requires areas of development to support China’s ambitious global march—not without potential contestations.