This blog covers the entire domain of sericulture. It is designed for providing a common platform for discussion between scientists, policy makers and students in the field. reproduction of content from this blog with due acknowledgement is encouraged.


A Strand of Silk

A very useful educational movie on mulberry silk production, from the lLibrary of Congress Prelinger Archive. 

The art of k'o-ssu
An award-winning Chinese documentary on the art of k'o-ssu, or silk weaving. (English version, HD)

Sericulture and silk craftsmanship in China
This UNESCO film features Sericulture and silk craftsmanship of China, based in Zhejiang and Jiangsu Provinces near Shanghai and Chengdu in Sichuan Province. Traditionally an important role for women in the economy of rural regions, silk-making encompasses planting mulberry, raising silkworms, unreeling silk, making thread, and designing and weaving fabric. It has been handed down within families and through apprenticeship, with techniques often spreading within local groups. The life cycle of the silkworm was seen as representing the life, death and rebirth of human beings. In the ponds that dot the villages, silkworm waste is fed to fishes, while mud from the ponds fertilizes the mulberry trees, and the leaves in turn feed the silkworms. Near the beginning of the lunar year, silkworm farmers invite artisans into their homes to perform the story of the Goddess of the Silkworm, to ward off evil and ensure a bountiful harvest. Every April, female silkworm farmers adorn themselves with colourful flowers made of silk or paper and make harvest offerings as part of the Silkworm Flower festival. Silk touches the lives of rural Chinese in more material ways, too, in the form of the silk clothes, quilts, umbrellas, fans and flowers that punctuate everyday life.

Story of a silkworm

This 5min 30 seconds movie is an introduction to sericulture intended to be an educational material for high school students. It defines sericulture and gives a short description of the life cycle of silkworm. Produced by CONCEPT India.

The Silk Route- filmed and directed by Gurmeet Sapal

In a few villages of Jharkhand, a large community of silk rearers is learning to dream again. An ancient tradition has been revived. And is giving the villagers a new means of livelihood, ending their days of chronic poverty. Barely a few years ago, thousands of tribals had given up the traditional vocation of tasar sericulture because of never ending loses. Thanks to the efforts of PRADAN, a voluntary orgnization, this sector has been revived, and is providing livelihood to thousands of poor villagers in Bihar and Jharkhand. PRADAN's efforts have empowered them with modern and scientific techniques of producing silk. India's current production of tasar silk is way behind the demand. The silk route is an inspiring story of how tasar sericulture has turned around the lives of tribals in Jharkhand, and more significantly the promise this sector holds for millions of others living in India's countryside.

International Year of Natural Fibers 2009

This short film titled International Year of Natural Fibers is a FAO production. Though it is not only about silk I found it interesting and hope would be informative to the viewers of this blog on account of the insights it provides on the socio cultural and economic importance of natural fibers. The following paragraph is adopted from the FAO write up.
Natural fibres may be defined as those renewable fibres from plants or animals which can be easily transformed into a yarn for textiles. Animal fibres are largely those which cover mammals such as sheep, goats and rabbits, but include also the cocoon of the silk-worm. Vegetable fibres are derived from the stem, leaf or seed of various plants. Close to 30 million tonnes of natural fibres are produced annually in the world, of which cotton is dominant with 20 million tonnes, wool and jute each around 2 to 3 million tonnes followed by a number of others.Natural fibre industries employ millions of people
and contribute to a greener planet. The International Year of Natural Fibres was officially launched on 22 January 2009, at the headquarters of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) in Rome. Its objectives were to raise awareness and stimulate demand for natural fibres, promote the efficiency and sustainability of the natural fibres industries, encourage appropriate policy responses from governments to the problems faced by natural fibre industries and to foster an effective and enduring international partnership among the various natural fibres industries. Since the 1960s, the use of synthetic fibres has increased, and natural fibres have lost a lot of their market share. The main objective of the International Year of Natural Fibres is to raise the profile of these fibres, to emphasise their value to consumers while helping to sustain the incomes of the farmers. Promoting measures to improve the efficiency and sustainability of production is also an important aspect of the Year.

The Antique Silk Factory

This National Geographic video titled "Antique Silk factory" features the ancient silk factory in Florence which still preserve its reputation for producing fine silk fabric. The ancient looms and other machinery are preseved in working condition.


This video clip features Colin Gerald Dryden Thubron, British travel writer and novelist narrate his experiences and motivation behind his monumental travel retracing SILK ROAD, 7000 miles long starting from Eastern China traversing through Afghanistan and Iran to reach Turkey. This short movie will be a fine primer for any one intending to read his travelogue 'Shadow of the Silk Road'.
The Ancient Silk Road of China by Michael Fairchild

"In the days of Kublai Khan, merchants traveled a dangerous road, carrying precious cargos of jade, gunpowder, sandalwood, and silk." So opens my audio visual which recreates the spirit of Marco Polo's epic journey across China in the 13th century says Michael Fairchild. A well made short film conveying the spirit of the ancient silk road
Documentary "Silk"

Award-winning Chinese documentary on the art of k'o-ssu, or silk weaving in three parts

Secrets of the Silk Road 

Contributing Curator Victor Mair introduces the new landmark exhibition Secrets of the Silk Road at the Penn Museum February 5 - June 5, 2011.



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