About

I am Susan Whitfield — a scholar, writer, traveller, and lecturer on the Silk Roads, now freelance, but with an honorary position at the Institute of Archaeology, University College London. During my twenty-five years at the British Library as curator of the Central Asia manuscript collection from the explorations of M. Aurel Stein and others in the early twentieth century, I helped establish and then developed and led the International Dunhuang Project (http://idp.bl.uk). This is an international collaboration to make these manuscripts and other artefacts dispersed in collections worldwide freely available online.

My research interests are broad: starting with Chinese historiography, censorship and forgeries, and moving on to include all things Silk Road, from archaeology, history, art, religion, geography, as well modern issues such as the UNESCO Silk Road World Heritage inscriptions and BRI. I have travelled widely on the Silk Road, including field trips to many of the archaeological sites.

Sueonyak_Afghanistan_LittlePamir

By the Amu Darya (Oxus River) valley, Wakhan corridor, northeastern Afghanistan.
Photograph: John Falconer

 
Most of my posts will be works in progress. After decades of research and travel I have too many ideas and leads ever to follow up in a single lifetime and I welcome others to cite and expand them.