Atlas provides us with a bird’s eye view of the complicated history of this important part of the Islamic world, which is closely connected with the history of Iran, Afghanistan, China, and Russia; at different times parts of this region were included in these neighboring states, and since 1991 five new independent states emerged in Central Asia: Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Tajikistan, Kazakhstan, and Kyrgyzstan.
Covering the 4th century B.C. to the present, the maps show the various political entities, their approximate borders, the major ethnic groups and their migrations, military campaigns and battles, etc.
Each map is accompanied by a text which gives a concise survey of the main events of the political and ethnic history of the respective period. With special maps on the distribution of the Turkmen, Uzbek, Qazaq, and Qirghiz tribes in the 19th-20th centuries, as well as the location of major archaeological sites and architectural monuments. The last map (Central Asia in 2000) shows existing gas and oil pipelines.
Yuri Bregel, Ph.D. (1961) in History, Institute of Oriental Studies, Moscow, is Professor Emeritus of Central Eurasian Studies at Indiana University. His most recent publication on the history of Central Asia is
Firdaws al-Iqbal (Brill, 1999).
"Professor Bregel has crowned his bibliography of reference works on this region with a splendid folio volume of forty-seven maps, each with a facing page of commentary … a sight for sore eyes in the purely complimentary sense." – John R. Perry, in:
Journal of the American Oriental Society, 2004 "…this historical atlas should serve as a very useful reference tool for Asian studies and be in every reference collection for both large and small academic and public libraries." – Hwa-Wei Lee, in:
American Reference Books Annual, 2006 "If cartographical study can be simultaneously valuable and a great pleasure, then Yuri Bregel's
Historical Atlas of Central Asia is simply a labour of love … This atlas, the culmination of a lifetime's work studying Central Asia, is also likely to stand the test of time in just the same way … It will grace the library of any owner, and makes a superb luxury gift for those interested in the historical development of the fascinating region." – Michael Dennison, in:
Asian Affairs, 2005 "...an extremely useful reference source. Bregel both achieves and surpasses his stated aim … The Atlas is an elegantly crafted work that breaks new ground in the study of the historical political geography of Central Asia. It is to be recommended to the general reader and the specialist alike.' – Nick Megoran, in:
Central Eurasian Studies Society, 2004 "Historical essays accompany all the maps – an essential feature, since most maps show complicated political shifts, military campaigns, and border transitions. The maps are clear and well colored … An important atlas … Summing Up: Recommended." – T. Miller, in:
All those interested in the history of Central Asia, the Islamic world, Iran, China, and Russia, including individual scholars and educators, as well as graduate students at universities.