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Southeast and International Trade in Asian History Essay


What role did the various states of Southeast Asia play in Asian history between 1000 and 1500

Southeast Asia is an area in the world that was greatly ignored in the past. Its essence equates with that of Africa to the British. Most people including graduates speak very little about it. However, this area played a significant role in the past. It was connected to Marshall Hodgson also known as Afro-Eurasian Historical Complex that was so significant in world history. Additionally, most societies arose around it. The states of this area also played a significant role in its political and cultural development. To enhance their success in cultural and political advancement, these states, Burma, Cambodia, Sumatra, and Vietnam utilized the borrowed Indian models to drive out Chinese colonial York.

Southeast Asia also played a significant role in early trade. This is evidenced by the role played by the empire that was built in Angkor, located in Cambodia. Angkor provided a good platform for the trading activities that took place between Southeast Asia and Europe. Southeast Asia is also among the first areas to be intruded on by religious and trade activities. Theravada Buddhism and Islam that originated from Sri Lanka, the Middle East, and India respectively were the first religious practices to be introduced in large parts of this area. With the extensive expansion of Buddhism, the states of Southeast Asia served as the unifying factors for the people from the Middle East, India, and Southeast Asia; Southeast Asia became a cosmopolitan with a diverse culture.

Most of the European nations that invaded Southeast Asia were in search of wealth. Unlike other states, Vietnam’s main role was to capture Christians and spices. Its main intention was to destabilize the settlement of the Europeans and to alter their history in Southeast Asia.

What role did international trade play in the emergence of states in Asian history before 1500?

International trade was one of the crucial elements that led to the advancement of Western Europe. It was also so insignificant to the history of both Asia and Africa. However, the emergence of Venice paved the way for the involvement of the Chinese in the trade. Additionally, the discovery of tin, gold, and exotic forest products in both Sumatra and Malaya contributed to the advancement of international trade in Southeast Asia. The caravan routes that passed through it served as the trading routes.

International trade was so crucial, that it enhanced the exchange of ideas between continents. It also played a significant role in uniting people from different areas. In addition to bringing people from different states together, it also enhanced the exchange of goods and services between the parties that were involved in the trade. Additionally, through trade people converged in Angkor and created a platform for the adoption of new religious practices in Southeast Asia. Besides, the trade together with advancement in religious practices contributed significantly towards the building of the Angkor Empire that acted as the unifying factor.

International trade also impacted the cultural practice of the people of Southeast Asia greatly. It led to the majority of the people learning new cultural practices. It also made the majority of the people in this area change their religious practices. The creation of a cosmopolitan state also impacted the cultural practices of the inhabitants of this area significantly.

The international trade in Southeast Asia also contributed to the emergence of economic hierarchies. Most women not only held high status but also took part in most public spheres such as small scale commerce. The trade also led to the migration of people into Southeast Asia and the assimilation of some cultural practices. For instance, Austronesian speaking made extensive movements into this area.

Works Cited

Ebrey, Patricia, James Palais, and Anne Walthall. East Asia: A Cultural, Social, and Political History, Volume I: To 1800: A Cultural, Social, and Political History. New York: Cengage Learning, 2009. Print.

Lockard, Craig. 2007. Web.

Trautmann, Thomas, and Jim Cogswell. India: Brief History of a Civilization. New York: Oxford University Press, Incorporated, 2010. Print.

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IvyPanda. (2020, October 2). Southeast and International Trade in Asian History. Retrieved from https://ivypanda.com/essays/southeast-and-international-trade-in-asian-history/

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"Southeast and International Trade in Asian History." IvyPanda, 2 Oct. 2020, ivypanda.com/essays/southeast-and-international-trade-in-asian-history/.

1. IvyPanda. "Southeast and International Trade in Asian History." October 2, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/southeast-and-international-trade-in-asian-history/.


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IvyPanda. "Southeast and International Trade in Asian History." October 2, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/southeast-and-international-trade-in-asian-history/.

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IvyPanda. 2020. "Southeast and International Trade in Asian History." October 2, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/southeast-and-international-trade-in-asian-history/.

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IvyPanda. (2020) 'Southeast and International Trade in Asian History'. 2 October.

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