Browse results

A Portrait of a Local Intermediary in Russian Central Asia
Author: Tetsu Akiyama
In The Qїrghїz Baatïr and the Russian Empire Tetsu Akiyama tells the story of Shabdan Jantay uulu (1839/40–1912), a local ruler from the northern Qїrghїz (Kirghiz, Kyrgyz) tribes. Akiyama explores Shabdan’s intermediary role in the Russian Empire’s military advance and rule in southern Semireche’e from the mid-nineteenth to the early twentieth century. Commonly portrayed as a faithful collaborator to Russia, he appears here as a flexible and tough intermediary who made strategic use of Russian dominance for his own ends. Based on a comprehensive study of primary sources, this interdisciplinary monograph dynamically reconstructs Shabdan’s biography, revealing the dilemmas faced by both Russian and Qїrghїz society, which were not only political, but also social, economic, and religious.
An Environmental History of Japan’s River, 1600-1920
In Turbulent Stream: An Environmental History of Japan’s Rivers, 1600-1920, Roderick Wilson describes how the rivers of Japan are both hydrologically and historically dynamic. Today, these waterways are slowed, channeled, diverted, and dammed by a myriad of levees, multi-ton concrete tetrapods, and massive multipurpose dams. In part, this intensive engineering arises from the waterways falling great elevations over short distances, flowing over unstable rock and soil, and receiving large quantities of precipitation during monsoons and typhoons. But this modern river regime is also the product of a history that narrowed both these waterways and people’s diverse interactions with them in the name of flood control. Neither a story of technological progress nor environmental decline, this history introduces the concept of environmental relations as a category of historical analysis both to explore these fluvial interactions and reveal underappreciated dimensions of Japanese history.
Crossing Cultural Boundaries in East Asia and Beyond explores the personal complexities and ambiguities, and the successes and failures, of crossing borders and boundaries. While the focus is on East Asia, it universalizes cultural anxieties with comparative cases in Russia and the United States. The authors primarily engage the individual experiences of border-crossing, rather than more typically those of political or social groups located at territorial boundaries. Drawing on those individual experiences, this volume presents an array of attempts to negotiate the discomforts of crossing personal borders, and attends to the intimate experiences of border crossers, whether they are traveling to an unfamiliar cultural location or encountering the “other” in local settings such as the classroom or the coffee shop.
The Huihui Yaofang was an encyclopedia of Near Eastern medicine compiled under the Mongol Yuan Dynasty for the benefit of themselves and the then Chinese medical establishments. Some 15% of the work survives, from a Ming Dynasty edition, and is here translated for the first time into English. We extensively introduce the translation with introductions situating it within the history of western and Chinese medicine, and provide critical apparatus for understanding. We provide accounts of the medicines and foods, with comparisons to other works of the time and to modern folk uses of these medicines in the Middle East. We show that the work is solidly western Asian, specifically derived from Persian-speaking Central Asia, and is adapted to Chinese use in several ways but without losing its western character.
Author: Xuefeng He
Translator: Jingyuan Yuan
Based on an in-depth investigation of different regions of China's vast countryside, Improving Village Governance in Contemporary China vividly describes rural governance mechanisms against the background of China's rapid urbanization. China’s rural areas vary greatly from region to region with respect to the pace and mode of change. Rural governance in China is decided by how the state transfers resources to villages, and by the linkage between the transfer style and the specific situation of each village. Only when grassroots governance is based on rural democracy (with peasants as the core) can villages become more harmonious.
Author: Litian Swen
Jesuit Mission and Submission explains how the Jesuits entered the Manchu world after the Manchus conquered Beijing in 1644. Supported by Qing court archives, the book discovers the Jesuits’ Manchu-style master-slave relationship with the Kangxi emperor. Against the backdrop of this relationship, the book reconstructs the back and forth negotiations between Kangxi and the Holy See regarding Chinese Rites Controversy (1705-1721), and shows that the Jesuits, although a group of foreign priests, had close access to Kangxi and were a trusted part of the Imperial circle. This book also redefines the rise and fall of the Christian mission in the early Qing court through key events, such as the Calendar Case and Yongzheng’s prohibition of Christianity.
Intersections of Hindu Knowledge and Love in Nineteenth Century Bengal
Author: Ankur Barua
In The Brahmo Samaj and its Vaiṣṇava Milieus: Intersections of Hindu Knowledge and Love in Nineteenth Century Bengal, Ankur Barua offers an intellectual history of the motif of religious universalism in the writings of some intellectuals associated with the Brahmo Samaj (founded in 1828). They constructed Hindu worldviews that were simultaneously rooted in some ancient Sanskritic materials and orientated towards contemporary universalist visions with western hues. These constructions were shaped by their dialectical engagements with three groups: members of the Bengali middle classes with sceptical standpoints (‘Young Bengal’), Christian missionaries, and Hindu Vaiṣṇava thinkers. In this genealogy of religious universalisms, Barua indicates how certain post-1900 formulations of the universalist compass of Hinduism were being enunciated across Brahmo circles from the 1820s.