This essay interrogates the recent trend toward global art history and cautions against the uncritical embrace of “the global” as an analytical frame for premodern eras at the expense of historical depth. From the vantage point of artistic practices in fifth- and sixth-century China, it argues that this is not always a productive analytic framework for describing the historical conditions of artistic and cultural exchange. However, it acknowledges that recent critical reformulations do productively challenge longstanding categories, binaries, and nationalist paradigms that are useful for the arts of an era that defies fixed political and cultural boundaries. The conditions of this era, and funerary art’s position outside of canonical art historiography, combine to counter narrow (modern) definitions and reveal the endurance and multiplicities of interactive forms and practices.
"A Camel's Pace: A Cautionary Global,"
The Medieval Globe: Vol. 3:
2, Article 3.
Available at: https://scholarworks.wmich.edu/tmg/vol3/iss2/3