Course Title:Basics for Intercultural Communication Between Ancient Civilizations of Belt-and-RoadInitiative

Course No. SUM19217
Class No. 2
Credit 2
Course Hours 32
Teacher David Bartosch
Venue West Campus, Comprehensive Building, Room 410

The economic and further civilizational development in the context of the Belt-and-Road Initiative differs from other developmental processes in the preceding history of modernity. It is a process of planetary integration of very different and ancient civilizations. In addition it is a process which has been initiated by China. China has a history of about 5000 years of integrating and merging very different cultures and civilizations into a multicultural and yet unified open sphere of civilization. Different from the Chinese approach, the preceeding Western processes (in historical times and the modernity of the 20th century) were based on take-over and monopolar civilizational expansion. The Belt-and-Road Initiative is based on the new idea of a multipolar framework of cooperation, co-development and the creation of win-win-situations. Therefore, a new form of intercultural or cross-cultural dialogue and communication between the ancient civilizations of Afro-Eurasia has to be established. The existing ancient (indigenous) civilizations of Afro-Eurasia have to be brought together by means of dialogue in a developmental process which is based on cross-cultural understanding. In this sense, the Belt-and-Road Initiative, which has been introduced by China, is not just the biggest infrastructural and economic development program in history – it also poses us with a completely new challenge, namely to install a deeper communication on a cultural level throughout the mega-continent of Afro-Eurasia by means of modern intercultural communication and media, whereby different and most ancient civilizations start to communicate the best aspects of their cultures. In this context, China has to communicate the best elements of its age-old civilization in a new and unprecedented way, a way which has to be developed now and which is in the making – so that these elements can be integrated in a context, where we sort out the best and most useful elements of all the civilizations (past and present) involved in the shared destiny of humanity. The first step in this direction is to provide students in the areas of cross-cultural communication and media with a basic understanding and knowledge about the ancient civilizations of Eurasia and Africa, and also to teach them the basic theoretical elements how to communicate cultural elements in a fruitful and furthering way – avoiding possible conflicts and clashes, and instead furthering the unity in the multipolar family of civilizations involved in the Belt-and-Road Initiative. The course (which is based on my previous undergraduate courses at BFSU and a similar course which I have already taught at BNU) will create an “overview effect” with regard to all the major Belt-and-Road civilizations, and it will also provide basic strategies of cross-cultural communication from an interdisciplinary perspective. Amongst other influences, this approach is methodologically related to the German traditions of the philosophy of culture and at the same time practice-oriented (cultural diplomacy). The latter aspect is inspired by Chinese traditions (Wang Yangming, 知行合一, Confucian thought, Guiguzi, etc.). The English level of the students should be good. I propose to provide the course for Junior & Above. The assessment will be based on a final exam which will include essay questions and multiple choice questions. The students will be provided with extensive materials on the traditional cultures of the Belt-and-Road civilizations, f. ex., maps and photographic materials, films, audio files etc. A course book, which I am writing at the moment, will be at hand either in a published form or as a finished manuscript for the students. For each session an extensive PPT-presentation will be provided which will contain all the required learning content for each session.

Teaching Language English
Field The Module of Courses with Disciplinary Orientation: Communication and Media Studies
Reference View Syllabus