Mark StaniforthMark StaniforthMark StaniforthMark Staniforth
Mark Staniforth

Mark Staniforth on underwater archaeology of the Maritime Silk Road

Mark Staniforth

The rapid expansion of China’s efforts in underwater archaeology have caught the attention of Science magazine.  A recent article chronicles this expansion and the interesting historical events it seeks to document (such as the 15th century voyage of Zheng He as far as Africa in a 250-ship armada).  It also addresses the geopolitical context of this work.  GES Adjunct Senior Research Fellow Mark Staniforth is extensively quoted is the article, which states that some archaeologists fear that China intends to use reclaimed patrimony to bolster its claims to disputed territories.  The article’s review of a number of recent projects and findings emphasises the extent of maritime trading links across the South China Sea and the Indian Ocean – the Maritime Silk Road – over the past millennium.