This is my Ph.D project titled Reflection in Qin-Han and Roman Art – Case Study: Mirrors which is held at Capital Normal University in Beijing in China under supervisors Ning Qiang (宁强), Yan Shaoxiang (晏绍祥), Yuan Guangkuo (袁广阔), Qian Yihui (钱益汇) and Xia Jiguo (夏继果).
The Roman Empire and Qin-Han China were the greatest and most powerful states and empires in antiquity. The last few years have seen a proliferation of scholarly research on the connections between the Roman Empire and Qin-Han China, including trade and maritime connections, coins and money, the spreading of social ideas and exchange of military knowledge. Building from those research results, and especially inspired by the many archaeological findings of mirrors in Roman Empire and Qin-Han China, the project I am proposing tends to show how scholars today can use the specific archaeological artifacts such as mirrors to build the knowledge within the social archaeology and understand the ideas and concepts of the ancient and classical world. This project will be a comparative study of the mirrors in Roman Empire and Qin-Han China, goal of which is to analyze the similarities and differences of mirrors in the two empires. The main concept I’ve chosen as a basis of this research is the concept «reflection», while I will also use the three sub-concepts: (1) soul/spirit and religion; (2) social identity and beyond (dream and fantasy); and (3) empire and reflection. By using archaeological remains, findings and ancient written sources, I will try to use the reflection as concept for connecting mirrors in the context of social archaeology (mirrors as personal products with idea of soul and spirit, dream and fantasy as part of using mirrors and mirrors like artifact for spreading role and idea of empire as political structure) during the Qin-Han and Roman empires.