"A nation's culture resides in the hearts and in the soul of its people"
-Mahatma Ghandi
Urban Archaeology of the Shang Dynasty and Conservation of Major Sites Conference
6-7 November, 2017

From November 6-7, 2017, Chinese Cultural Studies Center, the BA Programme in Cultural Management at The Chinese University of Hong Kong and the Henan Provincial institute of Cultural Relics and Archaeology jointly organized their third annual conference on Chinese culture. The “Urban Archaeology of the Shang Dynasty and Conservation of Major Sites Conference” was successfully conducted. There were twenty-two presentations spread out over two full days, with speakers coming from various research institutes and universities across mainland China, and from Hong Kong, Taiwan, Japan, Israel, Germany, and Luxembourg.

Audience members consisted of students, members of the public, and professionals involved in the field of archaeology or heritage conservation. The opening ceremony on November 6th included opening speeches from officiating guest Ms. Florence Hui, former Under Secretary for Home Affairs, and the three organizers, represented by Mr. Liu Hai Wang, Director of the Henan Provincial Institute of Cultural Relics and Archaeology, Ms. Oi Ling Chiang, founding director of Chinese Cultural Studies Center, and Professor Leung Yuen Sang, Dean of Faculty of Arts of The Chinese University of Hong Kong. This conference was an opportunity to share with the public an overview of the developments in archaeological research of the Shang period, as well as providing a platform to allow scholars to discuss how to protect and present major sites, and how they can co-exist along-side major economic developments, and bringing more attention to these issues.

Presentations were organized into three main topics: Panel 1—Excavation and Research of Shang-period Sites, Panel 2—Studies of Shang Archaeology, and Panel 3—Theories and Practices in the Conservation of Archaeological Sites.

(panel chair: Dr. Celine Lai of The Chinese University of Hong Kong)

Gao Mingkui
Shandong Provincial Institute of Cultural Relics and Archaeology
“A preliminary study of the Xia-Shang walled city at Dingtao Shilipu, Shandong”

Mr. Gao discussed the current excavation situation of the Shilipu site in Shandong. This site is one of a group of sites that saw continuous development from the late Neolithic era to the Xia, Shang and Zhou dynasties. It was a regional political entity during the Xia and Shang dynasties. Mr. Gao introduced important artifacts excavated from the site, as well as the direction of future conservation efforts, allowing the audience to gain a better understanding towards archaeology in Shandong.

Gu Fei
The Institute of Archaeology Chinese Academy of Social Sciences
“The discovery and study of the Shang walled city at Yanshi”

Mr. Gu Fei introduced the excavation situation and results of the Yanshi Shang City Site, including preliminary verification of the layout and construction sequence of the palatial city. In addition, a recent comprehensive review of the site led to existing understandings being revised. Since Yanshi Shang city is the earliest Shang capital city that has been discovered to date, it is an important landmark in the study of Xia-Shang culture.

Yang Shugang
Henan Provincial Institute of Cultural Relics and Archaeology
“Recent archaeological excavations and study of the Shang city at Zhengzhou”

Mr. Yang presented recent archaeological discoveries from the Zhengzhou Shang city, including from excavations that corresponded with fo ur big construction projects, such as the Zhengxing Commercial Building. In the archaeological process, various scientific technologies were utilized, including 3D imaging, and archaeological geographical information systems, enabling excavation to be more scientific. Mr. Yang also introduced the future plans for the creation of the Zhengzhou Shang City Site Park.

Gu Wanfa
Zhengzhou Institute of Cultural Relics and Archaeology
“A preliminary investigation on the archaeological finds and conservation of Dongjiao, Zhengzhou”

Mr. Gu presented on the Zhengzhou Dongzhao site. In exploring the topic of “The Formation and Development of the Early State in the Hinterland of the Central Plain in China,” the Zhengzhou Municipal Institute of Cultural Relics and Archaeology has carried out excavation at the Dongzhou site. Mr. Gu also discussed public archaeology in context of the site.

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