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Working Through The Reading List

The reading list for my first course, Horses and the Human Story: How Mongolian Horses Changed the World, is exciting. I am taking notes I work through it. I am hoping this will help me prepare me for a deeper dive into the assignments and tasks I will be asked to do while there. Here is a partial list. The remainder is in the final stages of publishing, so I am not quite sure that I am at liberty to share.

Natasha Fijn, Human-horse Sensory Engagement Through Horse

Archery, September 25, 2020, Australian Anthropological Journal, DOI: 10.1111/taja.12376.


William Honeychurch and Chunag Amartuvshin. "States on Horseback:The Rise of Inner Asian Confederations and Empires" in Meriam T. Stark (ed), Archeology of Asia, (Malden: Blackwell Press, 2006).

Rawson, J., Huan, L. & Taylor, W.T.T. Seeking Horses: Allies, Clients and Exchanges in the Zhou Period (1045–221 BC). J World Prehist 34, 489–530 (2021).

Struck J, Bliedtner M, Strobel P, Taylor W, Biskop S, Plessen B, Klaes B, Bittner L, Jamsranjav B, Salazar G, Szidat S, Brenning A, Bazarradnaa E, Glaser B, Zech M, Zech R. Central Mongolian lake sediments reveal new insights on climate change and equestrian empires in the Eastern Steppes. Sci Rep. 2022 Feb 18;12(1):2829. doi: 10.1038/s41598-022-06659-w. PMID: 35181711; PMCID: PMC8857271.

Wilkin S, Ventresca Miller A, Taylor WTT, Miller BK, Hagan RW, Bleasdale M, Scott A, Gankhuyg S, Ramsøe A, Uliziibayar S, Trachsel C, Nanni P, Grossmann J, Orlando L, Horton M, Stockhammer PW, Myagmar E, Boivin N, Warinner C, Hendy J. Dairy pastoralism sustained eastern Eurasian steppe populations for 5,000 years. Nat Ecol Evol. 2020 Mar;4(3):346-355. doi: 10.1038/s41559-020-1120-y. Epub 2020 Mar 2. PMID: 32127685; PMCID: PMC7212056.

Jamsranjav Bayarsaikhan, Tsagaan Turbat, Chinbold Bayandelger, Tumurbaatar Tuvshinjargal , Juan Wang, Igor Chechushkov, ,Manabu Uetsuki, Naoto Isahaya, Mark Hudson, Noriyuki Shiraishi, Yue Li, Chengrui Zhang, Gelegdorj Eregzen, Gino Caspari ,Paula López-Calle, Joshua L. Conver, Gaëtan Tressières, Lorelei Chauvey, Julie Birgel, Nasan-Ochir Erdene-Ochir, Jan Bemmann, Gregory Hodgins, Kristine K. Richter, Ludovic Orlando, Christina Warinner and William Timothy Treal Taylor. "The origins of saddles and riding technology in East Asia: discoveries from the Mongolian Altai," Antiquity 2024 Vol. 98 (397): 102–118,

The schedule for the first course is equally interesting:


NOTE: readings may be changed prior to class, as course materials are updated and circumstances of travel change.



Lecture topic

Site visits


Key deadlines

1 (July 20th)


Welcome, overview

Chinggis Khaan Museum National Museum of Mongolia

2 (July 21)

Travel to Kharkhorum

Mongolia’s horse culture: shaping the ancient world

Kharkhorum/Erdenezuu Monastery

Honeychurch and Amartuvshin 2006

Presentation topic approval

3 (July 22)


Horse transport and technology in early steppe empires

Orkhon Valley Cultural Landscape (UNESCO World Heritage)

Hoof Beats, Ch. 7-10 Bayarsaikhan et al. 2024 Fijn 2020

4 (July 23rd)

Travel to Jargalantyn Am

The origins of empire: Mongolia, the Silk Road, and the Xiongnu

Hoof Beats, Ch. 7-10 Struck et al. 2020

5 (July 24th)

Jargalantyn Am

Horse domestication

and Mongolia’s first horse cultures

Jargalantyn Am/Urt

Bulagyn deer stones and khirigsuur

Hoof Beats, Ch: 1-6

Fitzhugh 2009 Rawson et al. 2020

Final presentations

6 (July 25th)

Travel to Harganat


Conversation: horse equipment and training

7 (July 26th)


Horses and horse culture in a mechanizing world

Horseback trip: Harganat postal relay station

8 (July 27th)

Travel to Bulgan

Horse herding and dairy pastoralism

Conversation: Horse dairy production

Wilkin et al. 2020

Diaries/daily reflections due

9 (July 28th)

Travel to Ulaanbaatar


Goodbye dinner

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