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Grey zones: Opium Trade, Migrations, and Empires in Central and Northeast Asia, 1900s-1930s

March 10, 2023 @ 10:30 am 11:30 am

Speaker: Niccolò Pianciola, Associate Professor of History, University of Padua
Moderator: Nargis Kassenova, Senior Fellow; Director, Program on Central Asia, Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies

By comparing the border area between Turkestan and Xinjiang with the region in the Russian Far East bordering Manchuria, the talk will explore how the cross-border opium economy connected the Tsarist Empire and then the USSR to China and to the larger global opium market. It will also highlight the ambiguous status between legality and illegality in which opium remained during this period of imperial competition and state collapse, and the contradictions in both Tsarist and early Soviet rule of these two key Asian borderlands.

Also available on YouTube Live. Watch at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YC1VoHuseD4.


March 10, 2023
10:30 am – 11:30 am
Event Category:


Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies, Harvard University
View Organizer Website


CGIS South Room S354

1730 Cambridge St
Cambridge, MA 02138 United States

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