This is the second of four films introduced by the Singaporean scholar Peter Lee who visits, explores and talks about the great empires of SE Asia as part of the series: The Mark of Empire, for Channel New Asia (CNA).
In this week’s film host Peter Lee travels to Myanmar and sees how the legacy of the kingdom of Bagan is influencing identity and culture in the present day. It is this interplay that really defines the series, and marks it out as something a little different.
Bagan was, of course, one of the major kingdoms in the country, and at its peak the city itself had around 10,000 temples, around 1,000 of which survive, though mostly in ruins, to this day.
Peter flies in a hot-air balloon, finds out the importance of water in this arid land, has a go at pottery, and even takes part in an elephant dance, all as a way to discover more and get hands on with the culture he is exploring.
As always we have really brilliant and evocative animation to help tell the historical story, and meet with many local craftsmen along the way. The series is very professional and the stories are relevant and well told.
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