Ban Chiang Archaeological Site
Ban Chiang, Thailand (Udon Thani)
c. 2100 BC
UNESCO World Heritage Site
Image by annascan
Now that the airport international, the capital of Udon Thani province is certainly more accessible to the world, and about time too – since itâ€™s the gateway to the Ban Chiang archaeological site, one of the earliest sites in Southeast Asia to gain world heritage status.
What Ban Chiang lacks in iconic architecture, it makes up in sheer archaeological significance as a Bronze Age settlement. Over major excavations during the 60s and 70s, the picture of developing metal age technology that emerged challenged previous assumptions of Southeast Asia being a backwater to the civilisations in India and China.
Evidence suggests that a bronze age in Southeast Asia may have arisen as a result of agriculturalists moving into the region from China, or even a local origin for bronze working. Whichever the case may be â€“ the advent of this new technology seems to have affected Southeast Asia in ways that do not conform to the norms seen in the Mediterranean, India and China.
Read about the significance of Ban Chiang and the Southeast Asian Bronze Age in:
– The Bronze Age of Southeast Asia (Cambridge World Archaeology) by C. Higham
– Ban Chiang: Discovery of a Lost Bronze Age by the University Museum of the University of Pennsylvania by J. C. White
– Ban Chiang, a Prehistoric Village Site in Northeast Thailand: The Human Skeletal Remains (Thai Archaeology Monograph Series, 1) by M. Pietrusewsky and M. T. Douglas
– Ban Chiang: Art and prehistory of Northeast Thailand by A. J. Labbei
– Cognition and design production in Ban Chiang painted pottery by P. Van Esterik
– Ban Chiang prehistoric cultures by Y. Chin