Asian Perspectives, 2018 - Volume 57, Number 1 (Spring)

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    In MemoriamZhang Zhongpei 张忠培 (5 August 1934 – 5 July 2017)
    ( 2018) Li, Longlam
    On the morning of 5 July 2017, a message shocked the Chinese archaeological and heritage community. At the age of 83, Professor Zhang Zhongpei had died from an illness in Beijing. Zhang was one of the pioneering Chinese archaeological scholars and a great teacher of archaeology who founded the Archaeological Department of Jilin University.
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    Curve of the Hook: Yosihiko Sinoto, An Archaeologist in Polynesia. Yosihiko Sinoto with Hiroshi Aramata; ed. Frank Stewart, trans. Madoka Nagado. Mānoa: A Pacific Journal 28 (1); Honolulu: University of Hawai‘i Press, 2016. xxix + 205 pp., color and black-and-white photographs throughout. Paper, US $29. ISBN 978-0-8248-6623-5.
    ( 2018) Kurashina, Hiro ; Stephenson, Rebecca A.
    Curve of the Hook: Yosihiko Sinoto, An Archaeologist in Polynesia is an English language adaptation of a Japanese book entitled Rakuen Kokogaku by Yosihiko Sinoto and Hiroshi Aramata, which was originally published by Heibonsha Ltd., in Tokyo in 1994. Rakuen Kokogaku can be directly translated to English to mean Archaeology of Paradise or Paradise Archaeology. Until his recent passing in October 2017, Dr. Yosihiko Sinoto (henceforth Yosi) occupied the Kenneth Pike Emory Distinguished Chair in Anthropology and was a Senior Anthropologist at the Bernice P. Bishop Museum in Honolulu, Hawai‘i. Hiroshi Aramata is a Japanese author, journalist, and translator. The Japanese edition won a prestigious book award, the Yoshikawa Eiji Prize for Literature in 1996. In 1999, it was recognized as one of the best one hundred biographies about a Japanese person published in the twentieth century. In June 2017, the English language edition, Curve of the Hook, won the Hawai‘i Book Publishers Association 2017 Ka Palapala Po‘okela Award in the category of Excellence in Nonfiction.
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    Mapping the Indo-Pacific Beads vis-à-vis Papanaidupet. Alok Kumar Kanungo. New Delhi and Madrid: Aryan Books International and International Commission on Glass, 2016. xii + 92 pp., €24. ISBN 978-81-7305-547-8.
    ( 2018) Babalola, Abidemi Babatunde
    Alok Kumar Kanungo’s Mapping the Indo-Pacific Beads vis-à-vis Papanaidupet discusses the production of a particular kind of glass bead purported to have originated in South India over two and a half millennia ago. This Indo-Pacific glass bead is claimed to have spread across vast areas of southern and southeastern Asia as well as the eastern sub-region of the African continent. Borne from nearly two decades of Kanungo’s archaeological and ethnographic research on glass and glass beads in India and surrounding regions, this book maps the spread of the Indo-Pacific (IP) beads in Southeast Asia, documents the process of production of the beads at the extant glass bead making factories at Papanaidupet, and describes the social, economic, and ritual use of the beads across Southeast Asia. Contributing to our knowledge of the importance of India in the history of glass, the author details complexities associated with the archaeological study of glass. These difficulties include (1) reconstructing techniques of glass bead production, (2) identifying debris representing different stages in the production chain, and (3) understanding the social collaboration embedded in each step of the production to ensure a successful final product.
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    Glass in Ancient India: Excavations at Kopia. Alok Kumar Kanungo, with 22 additional contributors. Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala: Kerala Council for Historical Research, 2013. 475 pp., 597 figures, 144 tables. Hardback, US $50. ISBN 81-85499-46-2.
    ( 2018) Lankton, James W.
    Glass in Ancient India: Excavations at Kopia by Alok Kumar Kanungo (AKK) is a substantial work, reporting on five excavation seasons from 2004 to 2009 at the north Indian site of Kopia, which as early as 1891 was suggested to have been an ancient glass manufacturing site. Excavation in 1949 provided more evidence of glass production, including glass beads and other glass fragments, as well as fragments of reddish brown ceramic vessels thought to have been used as crucibles. Limited chemical analyses of the glass showed soda glass with high alumina and lower lime and magnesia (Roy and Varshney 1953)
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    The Life of the Longhouse: An Archaeology of Ethnicity. Peter Metcalf. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2010. 345 pp., 19 figures, appendix, bibliography, 2 indices. Hardback, £82, US $129. ISBN 9780521110983; 2012 Paperback, £36, US $57. ISBN: 9781107407565.
    ( 2018) Lloyd-Smith, Lindsay
    The work of anthropologist Peter Metcalf will be familiar to many archaeologists. His 1992 co-authored Celebrations of Death: The Anthropology of Mortuary Ritual is widely cited by burial archaeologists (Metcalf and Huntington 1992). Metcalf’s interest in the function and meaning of ritual in small scale communities stemmed from his doctoral research on Borneo in the early 1970s, and those who enjoyed Celebrations of Death should seek out his entertainingly detailed A Borneo Journey into Death (1982). A further short classic is Metcalf’s They Lie, We Lie: Getting on with Anthropology (2002), a highly recommended read for all archaeologists involved with community-based projects. In his latest book, The Life of the Longhouse: An Archaeology of Ethnicity, Metcalf revisits his study area of the Brunei hinterland on Borneo to write a detailed historical narrative spanning the last 200 years. He explores the contingent relationships between domestic architecture, pre-modern trading systems, political and ritual economies, and ethnicity – all topics which concern archaeologists. Metcalf maintains the high level of scholarship evident in his earlier work, and with his intimate knowledge of the material is able to convey the intricacies of these narratives and make the book a pleasure to read. In short, it is a work that deserves to become as equally well-known and cited as his earlier books.