Iron and steel in Chinese history
Dr Donald Wagner, expert on the history of science and technology in China and author of Needham's Science & Civilisation in China, vol.V, will give a lecture on iron and steel in Chinese history. The lecture will be followed by a question and answer session.
The use of iron and steel for tools and weapons has been an important factor in world history from the earliest times to the present. In the technology of iron production, China took a different path from that of the West, favouring large-scale production from very early on. This choice of technology was made possible by strong centralisation of political power in China and in turn encouraged centralisation.
Dr Wagner's volume 'Ferrous metallurgy' in Joseph Needham’s Science and Civilisation in China,vol.5 (2008) considers the political, economic and technological history of iron and steel production in China from the earliest times to 1958, using archaeological and historical sources. In his lecture Dr Wagner will discuss some of the important aspects of this history.
Donald B. Wagner has written widely on the history of science and technology in China, especially mathematics and metallurgy. He is Senior Research Fellow (Emeritus) at the Nordic Institute of Asian Studies, University of Copenhagen and as well as teaching at the University of Copenhagen, he has taught at the University of Victoria (British Columbia), the Technical University of Berlin and Sichuan University.
His current project is a textbook of archaeometallurgy, to be translated and published by the Department of Archaeology, Sichuan University.
This is one of the lectures in the on-going China Centre Seminar series, hosted by the China Centre, Jesus College. The lectures, given by eminent speakers, will cover a broad range of topics and disciplines.
Attendance is free and booking is not required.