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NYC - Public Lecture Series feat. Sheldon Gosline


Gansang Culture in the Youjiang Valley

New Evidence of Forgotten River Valley Civilization
Between the Indus and Yellow Rivers


At this time, when it seems that every corner of the planet has been explored, it is almost beyond belief that there could be a yet unknown ancient civilization. However in April 2014, that is exactly what Dr. Sheldon Lee Gosline discovered in a region that has previously received scant attention.

This remarkable journey of discovery began almost three years earlier when a peasant farmer from Gansang Village brought into Pingguo City several small stones with unusual writing, reportedly discovered while plowing. Local archaeologists found several more inscriptions and test excavations over two seasons uncovered inscriptions in archaeological context. The Chinese academic community could not figure out what to make of the writing.



Dr. Gosline began examining these texts in September 2013, and soon discovered that some signs even resembled Old Persian cuneiform and Indus Valley script, in addition to confirming the presence of characters like ancient Chinese and several minority Chinese scripts. He presented his initial findings to the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences in December 2013, still uncertain if the inscriptions were genuine or an elaborate hoax.

In April, Dr. Gosline visited Gansang to study the inscriptions first-hand and ponder the context of where they were found. Over the course of a week he found clear evidence of long human occupancy and an advanced civilization that extended at least 140 km along the Youjiang River, now hidden in dense tropical overgrowth. He presented initial reports to Chinese officials, published in Chinese news outlets. The next phase of research in Pingguo County is timed to coordinate with the 2014 summer solstice to study megalithic remains near Gansang thought to measure that astronomical event, and (pending approval) to open an elite / royal tomb that Dr. Gosline also discovered.



Dr. Sheldon Lee Gosline has recently been teaching a course on the history of ancient writing at Tsinghua University, Beijing. He is also the recipient of a grant through University College London and the Chinese Embassy of London to research at Minzu University of China and in cooperation with the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences. Dr. Gosline received his PhD from University College London in the History of Science and Technology. He holds an MA from the University of Chicago in Egyptology and Near Eastern History. He has also studied the Indus Valley, Sumerian, Babylonian, Persian, Aztec, Maya, and Chinese civilizations at the University of Pennsylvania, University of Cambridge, and University of Wisconsin-Madison. The seed of this discovery began twenty-five years ago, when the speaker was reading Egyptology at Cambridge and living with the late Sinologist, Dr. Joseph Needham.

Date: 09/08/2014

Time: 6:00pm Reception, 7:00pm Lecture

Location: NYC Headquarters, 46 E 70th Street, New York, NY, 10021

Member Ticket Price: Free

Guest Ticket Price: $20

Student Ticket Price:

Free to EC Student Members, $5 w/ valid Student ID

Reservation Notes:

Reservations are secured on a first-come, first-served basis.

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