UCLA International Institute
Asia Institute

Advancing collaborative, interdisciplinary research on Asia worldwide


The Mongols from the Margins: New Perspectives on Central Asians in World History

A one-day conference sponsored by the UCLA Program on Central Asia and the Richard Hovannisian Endowed Chair in Modern Armenian History.

Stretching from the plains of Eastern Europe to the warm waters of the Pacific, the Pax Mongolica created Eurasia-wide networks of exchange and circulation through which not only military personnel, pathogens, and commodities circulated from China to the Eastern Mediterranean, but also ideas, customs, and social practices. How did the tenticular expansion of Mongol networks transform the cultural, social, and even imaginary realms of societies situated on the peripheries of Mongol rule? How did the societies on the margins in turn project their own representations of Mongol rule and its transformative role in the history of the region? This conference seeks to explore these two different yet related questions from the perspective of peoples on the distant margins of the Pax Mongolica who usually do not occupy a central position in the conventional historiography of Mongol Eurasia. Placing a Central Asian empire and its Eurasian outliers into the framework of a global medieval history, The Mongols from the Margins brings together international specialists on Cilician Armenia, the Caucasus, Japan, Europe, Egypt, and Byzantium to re-examine Mongol history from its multifarious peripheries.

Organized by Nile Green, Director of the Program on Central Asia and Professor of History, and Sebouh Aslanian, Assistant Professor & Richard Hovannisian Endowed Chair in Modern Armenian History.


Conference Schedule



Conference Media

Opening Remarks

An introduction by Nile Green, UCLA

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The Mongols and the New World History

An introduction by Sebouh Aslanian, UCLA

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No One Knew Who They Were: Russian Interaction with the Mongols

Charles Halperin, Russian and East European Institute, Indiana University, Bloomington

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Mongol Caucasia: Regional Historiographies and Social Change in an Integrating Eurasian World

Steve Rapp, Sam Houston State University

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The changing role of women in Cilician Armenian court as a result of interacting with the Mongols

Zara Pogossian, Bochum University/John Cabot College (Rome)

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From Ad Hoc to Ongoing:  The Mongol Invasions and the Institutionalization of Authority in Japan

Thomas Conlan, Bowdoin College

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Reception and (Mis)representation: Mongol Influences on China from the Perspective of Law and Gender

Bettine Birge, USC

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The Mongol Contribution to Eurasian History

 Keynote lecture by Morris Rossabi, Distinguished Professor of History, Queens College, CUNY

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Cosponsored by the Center for Near Eastern StudiesAsia Institute