The Project: Modern Trade

Although people often think of the Silk Road as belonging to a romantic past, the fabled trade routes that existed centuries ago are active today, pulsing with Uighur, Kyrgyz, Han Chinese, Kazakh, Uzbek, and Russian traders. This project aims to understand the social dynamics that make this trade possible in a climate of patchwork infrastructure and political corruption.

The driving force behind this investigation are the questions “How do average people get access to goods to provide for their families?” and “What are the political and social formations and relationships that are invoked to make this access possible?”

In this spirit, I hope to map the physical routes and social connections that are brought together through the commerce along the contemporary Silk Road.

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