Fireside Meeting



The Hillside Club Fireside meetings, held on the first Monday of most months* are a good way to see the club and get to know the members. The meetings begin with Club business at 7:00pm, followed by a speaker at 7:30pm. Club members, our neighbors, and the general public are encouraged to attend.
We hope to see you there.

*(January, February, March, April, June, October, November)



F I R E S I D E   M E E T I N G

Monday,  April 6th  •  7:30 pm
open to the public - admission is free

“Encountering the Silk Road in Western China: Then and Now"

Carol Bier

Hillside member Carol Bier returns to our next Fireside meeting to sort through several conundrums that inquiring travelers face today encountering the lands traversed by pilgrims, monks, merchants, explorers and adventurers in previous centuries. A recent trip to western China prompts a reconsideration of many questions concerning the ancient Silk Road, Turkestan, Taklamakan Desert, and the Tarim Basin. Childhood memories of what she learned about distant China, Soviet Central Asia, and Eastern Turkestan, and graduate school training in the histories of Buddhist, Indian, and Islamic art contrasted with her experiences there this winter. In this lecture she will explore the perplexities of geography and the environment, languages and terminology, religious beliefs and burial practices, ethnicity and identity.  This lecture weaves together a narrative of the many strands of cultural perspectives, past and present, in an effort to understand contemporary issues in western China. An exceptional talk such as this one is not to be missed!

Carol Bier in Bezelik with an Uyghur musician playing the rewap covered with snakeskin and with a pair of decorative "goats' horns."                                                                                                                        Photo credit: Eileen Ekinaka

Carol Bier is an historian of Islamic art. She is Research Associate with The Textile Museum in Washington DC, where she served as Curator of Eastern Hemisphere Collections from1984-2001.  Currently she is a Visiting Scholar at the Center for Islamic Studies of the Graduate Theological Union here in Berkeley.


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