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Southeast Asia Presentation Williams

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Jacob de Rothschild

on 25 February 2014

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Transcript of Southeast Asia Presentation Williams

5 major powers ruled over the Southeastern Asian region during the time period (100-1520):

- The Ava Rulers of Myanmar
- The Later Le Dynasty of Vietnam
- The Ayutthaya of Thailand
- The Majapahit of the island of Java
- The Melaka of the Malay Peninsula.
Geography of Southeast Asia
Burma (9% of the population)
Thailand (10.5%)
Laos (1%)
Cambodia (1.5%)
Vietnam (14.5%)
Philippines (13.4%)
Malaysia (3.8%)
Indonesia (42.5%)

Influence & Influences
Influences -
Southeast Asia was heavily influenced by China and India. Both cultures' literature, management of state, religious beliefs, and certain concepts of social hierarchy were adopted. However, they also rejected some of the vocabulary and other social hierarchy concepts from the cultures as well. Buddhist beliefs were also a strong presence. It was a true blend of the major cultures of the time.
Influence -
Southeast Asia was actually the first to do many things, such as developing the southern spice trade. The European world then followed. This process is sometimes referred as "Southernization."

Relations to China


Southeast Asia is known for its extensive Rice Paddy fields. Whether or not SE Asia developed food production on their own is still under question, but it is to near certainty that Paddy Fields originated in Malay -- the word "paddy" is derived from a Malay term.

Why rice paddies?
An accurate explanation to why most of Southeast Asia adopted Rice Fields will be in regards to the local climate / weather condition. A humid, rainy area, constantly threatened by storms (known as typhoons), paddy fields provide the most secure, safe source of carbohydrates.

Though they require great care, they produce surplus food (for families to store, in fear of weather calamities), when cared right.
Two Major Religions Engulfed Southeast Asia
Buddhism sparked in the year 503 B.C. and popularized over the course of several centuries. A man Siddhartha taught this unique religion on the basis that he did not accept the patriarchy that Hindu priest were more valuable than other people. Buddhism is built on the basis of equality and was one of the first religions in Asia to grow to such an extent. Nearly all of southeast Asia's countries held inhabitants that were Buddhist. The statue to the right of this text is a Statue dating back to 9th century, located in Indonesia's Borobudur Temple.
Influence on Southeast Asia
Indian Influence

Very early on, India recognized that the peninsular shape of Southeast Asia would be very beneficial to their trade. Because of this new trade route, Malaysia and Thailand were able to gain connections with Rome and obtained beads and lamps during the first and second centuries. Also, Buddhism acted as a way to share their culture. With that came the spread of tha Indian alphabet, literature, and language. In addition, Indians brought the ideas of monarchy, law, and administration.
Chinese Influence
With China, it seems as though there were "Iron Curtains" other than the one to the west. After the Ch'in Empire fell, the Hans opened up a route to the south, and through this, Southeast Asia became the middleman between China and the Roman Empire. Like the Indian culture, Chinese culture spread through Buddhism, but it came through their ethical system as well.
Islamic Influence
In the fourteenth century, Islam made its way to Malaysia and brought with it many cultural ideas and values. It even became the center of Islamic culture with a very large geographic advantage.
Social Structure and Government
The Khmers started populating Southeast Asia as early as 1000 B.C. They were one of the greatest powers in all of Southeast Asia for hundreds of years. The Khmer flourished mostly from the 9th the 15th centuries and started their domination when King Jayavarman declared independence. The Khmer's most famous city was Angkor. There, their most famous temple (Angkor Wak) was built in the 12th century under control of King Suryavarman. The Khmer were one of the most dominant people and controlled a big chunk of land below China.
In Southeast Asia there were four main religions: Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam and Animism.
As the years passed, different cultures influenced the region at different times, creating a "melting pot" of different beliefs. Even influences from the far off lands of Europe had repercussions in the different nations of Southeast Asia.
The people of the Mon Kingdoms migrated to Southeast Asia in the 6th century. They retained great power and control in what is now Burma from the 9th to 11th century and 13th to the 16th century. They created the great kingdom of Thaton of lower Burma in the 9th century and the Hanthawaddy kingdom in the 13th century. The Hanthawaddy kingdom was from the doing of the Pagan Empire collapse. It was an area in lower Burma where many Mon speaking people collected and had a loose government. Once King Razadarit gained control over the region, he unified the three kingdoms. Around the early 15th century the kingdom was considered the most prosperous since Pagan became a center for trade.
The main powers in Southeast Asia were the empire of Khmer (Dominant Empire from 9th to 15th century), the Mon Kingdom, Malays, and the Burman empire. The government was a monarch for most years with many different kings of their empire.
The progression from hunter-gatherer and agricultural communities to advanced hierarchical states led way to development of civilizations to become influential contributors of eventually trading systems.
One of the most important parts of studying the history of Southeast Asia is realizing how big of an affect it had on the rest of the world. This region had the capability to branch out over two-thirds of the globe by 400 C.E., and was the first to develop the long-distance trade in southern spices. Until the British Industrial Revolution, they were the strongest and exported in very high quantities. Through their great trading location and with people of many cultures, everyone was unified. It is even believed by some that "southernization" caused westernization. Southeast Asia helped feed countries the new ideas and technologies that helped them prosper. Europe merely seized the prosperous tropical and subtropical lands to become prosperous.
Catamarans, a two-bodied ship, was a key invention that allowed long-distance traveling and exploration. Bringing balance and stability to the nautical capabilities, Malay ships and sailors were able to reach as far as Madagascar.

Though the depiction to the left is a Polynesian catamaran, Southeast Asians developed a similar vessel.
A Roman Bead
A Roman Lamp
Economically Southeast Asia was depicted as a region of great opulence and renowned for its exotic goods, such as silks, spices and gold. Making way for an increase of flow of goods and wealth for surrounding regions and the southeast Asian region itself.
Map not in English
The Malays lived in the Malay Peninsula below Burma. They are thought to have moved there in the 6th century. They had no large oraganized government and lived mostly by trading throughout the land.

Islam first became popular in Southeast Asia in the mid 13th century. In the prior centuries Muslim merchants came on trade expeditions and interacted with Asian locals. While their interactions began as mere trade, the religion spread. Only few Asian groups followed Islam outside of Islam's 2 major Asian capitals: Mallaca, Malaysia and parts of Indonesia. The food jar shown to the left is actually from the 11th century in Malaysia. This jar is done in Arab/Muslim style serving as early evidence of Islamic expansion. Other Items like tombstones were found in the Malay Peninsula also done in Arabic style. Intrigued by the artistic and crafty techniques of the Muslims, some Hindu and Buddhist people abandoned their native religions for Islam.
Angkor Wat
- Southeast Asia had trouble trading
- They invented new ships that allowed to them to sail the coasts
- This opened up trade routes
- These Jades pictured above were used as ornaments, this was a trading resource
- Jades traveled the world

A gold alloy bracelet that belonged to Genghis Khan was found by archaeologist of the Mongolian Academy of Sciences. Although this particular bracelet belonged to a man of royalty, many different types of jewels and goods like this were traded all throughout South East Asia. Many empires traded with each other, so goods made during the Khan era can be found all throughout ruins in South East Asia, like parts of Vietnam and of core China. This trade added to the diffusion of people throughout all of Asia, this is why we can trace people from different nations venturing into Mongolia and other parts of Asia.
Burmans were another very dominant race in Southeast Asia. They created the almighty Pagan Empire which started in the 9th century near present-day Burma. The Empire didn't actually exist until King Anawrahta established it around 1050. They started controlling the upper Malay peninsula all the way up to China in the 12th Century. In the 13th century the Empire died out as the king lost the loyalty of his men.
Vietnamese Metal Work
example of southeast asian rainforrest
This ancient passport, made of all silver, was used to move in and out of the countries in South East Asia. It is yet another sign of the diffusion of people in Asia. People traveled in and out empires and countries, trading goods and learning the ways of their neighboring countries. This is also a sign of how civilized the people in this time were. They were able to create regulations of travel, making sure that people are safe and that powers weren't abused.
A metal work from ancient Thailand, exemplifying Buddhist influence
Thai Metal Work
The above two "charms" have both Thai and Chinese characteristics. Chinese characters can be seen on both medals, yet this metalpiece originated in Thailand.
example of Southeast Asian traders
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