China experience for UWTSD Archaeology and Heritage students


10.10.2019

UWTSD Archaeology and Heritage students have attended a two-week Summer School in Beijing where they had an opportunity to immerse themselves in Chinese culture.   

China Summer School UWTSD 1

This year’s Chinese Summer School, like the one in 2018, was again arranged in conjunction with UWTSD’s partner institution, Beijing Union University (BUU).  BUU is one of the largest universities in Beijing and over a number of years both institutions have been working in partnership on a number of projects.  This important collaboration includes the Annual Summer School which saw UWTSD’s Lampeter campus based students visiting several archaeological excavation sites.   The students also attended a number of archaeology and heritage workshops provided by BUU which gave them an insight into conservation, restoration, and archaeology practices from a Chinese perspective. This included demonstrations of ceramic and painting restoration by experts in their field.

During the two-week trip, the students had an opportunity to visit a number of China’s most iconic landmarks and heritage sites. In Beijing, these included the Imperial Palace, Tiananmen Square, The Summer Palace, The Ming Tombs and The Great Wall of China. In Xi’an, the group visited the City walls, the Terracotta Army and also had an opportunity to attend a performance of traditional dance and music.. The trip illustrated the importance of interdisciplinary cross-cultural work as well as the importance of heritage and archaeology for all disciplines of humanities.

Associate Professor Thomas Jansen, Director at UWTSD’s Confucius Institute commented:

“The purpose of the China trip was to offer our students a unique experience in a country that is steeped in history and tradition but has also experienced one of the most dramatic transformations in recent human history. This is what makes archaeology and heritage such exciting subjects in China with huge public impact. We had the privilege to attend workshops by experts from top institutions such as the Palace Museum, the Beijing Metropolitan Museum, the Summer Palace Museum or the Shaanxi Provincial History Museum in Xi’an.

While we hope to inspire our students to widen their horizons and learn more about China, we also seek to promote our own excellent academic programmes in archaeology and heritage to potential Chinese students.”

UWTSD China Summer School 2

Lilian Earp is currently studying BA Ancient Civilisations and describes the trip as a ‘wonderful experience’.  She said:

“The Chinese Archaeology trip was a wonderful experience! It definitely exceeded my expectations, due to the range of activities, especially such things as visiting a current excavation site in Xi'an, which was not something that I had expected to get the opportunity to do.

For me, the most memorable part of the trip was visiting the Great Wall and also watching a series of traditional dances at a theatre in Xi'an. I think that my main takeaway from the trip, particularly in reference to future studies, is how civilisation develops and changes, which is something that I find particularly easy to visualise in a country such as China.”

Amy Ferguson who is studying BA Archaeology was also on the trip.  She added:

“The trip to China was better than I expected it to be. It was amazing having something to do every day as well as a chance to explore independently. There was never a dull moment and I didn’t expect to learn and see so many new things. Most unforgettable moment being the Great Wall which was breath taking but also our lecture on ceramic restoration, smashing bowls with hammers and piecing them back to together was a lot of fun. I didn’t think I’d enjoy it as much as I did but everyone involved did a great job of creating a nice atmosphere and providing us with amazing experiences and memories.”

 

UWTSD China Summer School 3

Further Information

For more information please contact Arwel Lloyd, Principal PR and Communications Officer, on 01267 676663 / Arwel.Lloyd@uwtsd.ac.uk