|The premodern contacts, imagined and real, between East and West. Cultural, religious and technological exchanges between China, India and Rome. The interactions between these sedentary societies and their nomadic neighbors. The rise and fall of nomadic empires such as that of the Mongols. Trade, exploration and conquest on the Eurasian continent. We will sample pertinent travel accounts as a form of ethnographical knowledge that reproduces notions of cultural identity and civilization.