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Series:

Anya H. King

Since antiquity, musk has been a valued perfume and medicine. Because the musk deer only lives in Central Eurasia, people in other locations had to trade for its musk. For medieval Islamic civilization, musk became the most important of all aromatics. The musk trade thus illuminates the nature of medieval Asian trade and musk's cultural effects on the Islamic world. Scent from the Garden of Paradise: Musk and the Medieval Islamic World examines the history of musk from its origins in Asia to its uses in the medieval Middle East, surveys the Islamic literature on musk, and discusses the roles of musk in perfumery and medicine, as well as the symbolic importance of musk in Islam.

Series:

Edited by Ildikó Bellér-Hann, Birgit N. Schlyter and Jun Sugawara

Building on the rich scholarly legacy of Gunnar Jarring, the Swedish Turkologist and diplomat, the fourteen contributions by sixteen authors representing a variety of disciplines in the humanities and the social sciences provide an insight into ongoing research trends in Uyghur and Xinjiang Studies. In one way or other all the chapters explore how new research in the fields of history, linguistics, anthropology and folklore can contribute to our understanding of Xinjiang’s past and present, simultaneously pointing to those social and knowledge practices that Uyghurs today can claim as part of their traditions in order to reproduce and perpetuate their cultural identity.
Contributors include: Ildikó Bellér-Hann, Rahile Dawut, Arienne Dwyer, Fredrik Fällman, Chris Hann, Dilmurat Mahmut, Takahiro Onuma, Alexandre Papas, Eric Schluessel, Birgit Schlyter, Joanne Smith Finley, Rune Steenberg Jun Sugawara, Äsäd Sulaiman, Abdurishid Yakup, Thierry Zarcone.

May Schinasi

Through years of neglect, deliberate modernization, and the effect of decades of war, Kabul’s architectural history has virtually disappeared. By meticulous use of all available records including written works, photographs, films, and oral reminiscences, Kabul: A History 1773-1948 provides a remarkably complete and unsurpassed account of the city’s history as seen through its built environment, from the pleasure gardens of the 16th and 17th century Mughals to the efforts of the Saduza’i and Muhammadza’i rulers of the 18th-20th centuries to turn this one-time resort town into a thriving capital city at the center of a country of enormous diversity. Thoroughly documented and well-illustrated, the book reveals the rich cultural legacy of a city of global importance.

Edited by Kathryn O. Weber, Emma Hite, Lori Khatchadourian and Adam T. Smith

Fitful Histories and Unruly Publics re-examines the relationship between Eurasia’s past and its present by interrogating the social construction of time and the archaeological production of culture. Traditionally, archaeological research in Eurasia has focused on assembling normative descriptions of monolithic cultures that endure for millennia, largely immune to the forces of historical change. The papers in this volume seek to document forces of difference and contestation in the past that were produced in the perceptible engagements of peoples, things, and places. The research gathered here convincingly demonstrates that these forces made social life in ancient Eurasia rather more fitful and its publics considerably more unruly than archaeological research has traditionally allowed.
Contributors are Mikheil Abramishvili, Paula N. Doumani Dupuy, Magnus Fiskesjö, Hilary Gopnik, Emma Hite, Jean-Luc Houle, Erik G. Johannesson, James A. Johnson, Lori Khatchadourian, Ian Lindsay, Maureen E. Marshall, Mitchell S. Rothman, Irina Shingiray, Adam T. Smith, Kathryn O. Weber and Xin Wu.

Muslim Sources on the Magyars in the Second Half of the 9th Century

The Magyar Chapter of the Jayhānī Tradition

Series:

Istvan Zimonyi

The Jayhānī tradition contains the most detailed description of the Magyars/Hungarians before the Conquest of the Carpathian Basin (895). Unfortunately, the book itself was lost and it can only be reconstructed from late Arabic, Persian and Turkic copies. The reconstruction is primarily based on the texts of al-Marwazī, Ibn Rusta and Gardīzī. The original text has shorter and longer versions. The basic text was reformed at least twice and later copyists added further emendation. This study focuses on the philological comments and historical interpretation of the Magyar chapter, integrating the results in the fields of medieval Islamic studies, the medieval history of Eurasian steppe, and the historiography of early Hungarian history.

Qazaqlïq, or Ambitious Brigandage, and the Formation of the Qazaqs

State and Identity in Post-Mongol Central Eurasia

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Joo-Yup Lee

In Qazaqlïq, or Ambitious Brigandage, and the Formation of the Qazaqs Joo-Yup Lee examines the formation of new group identities, with a focus on the Qazaqs, in post-Mongol Central Eurasia within the context of qazaqlïq, or the qazaq way of life, a custom of political vagabondage widespread among the Turko-Mongolian peoples of Central Asia and the Qipchaq Steppe during the post-Mongol period.

Utilizing a broad range of original sources, the book suggests that the Qazaqs, as well as the Shibanid Uzbeks and Ukrainian Cossacks, came into existence as a result of the qazaq, or “ambitious brigand,” activities of their founders, providing a new paradigm for understanding state formation and identity in post-Mongol Central Eurasia.

Kailas Histories

Renunciate Traditions and the Construction of Himalayan Sacred Geography

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Alex McKay

Tibet’s Mount Kailas is one of the world’s great pilgrimage centres, renowned as an ancient sacred site that embodies a universal sacrality. But Kailas Histories: Renunciate Traditions and the Construction of Himalayan Sacred Geography demonstrates that this understanding is a recent construction by British colonial, Hindu modernist, and New Age interests. Using multiple sources, including fieldwork, Alex McKay describes how the early Indic vision of a heavenly mountain named Kailas became identified with actual mountains. He emphasises renunciate agency in demonstrating how local beliefs were subsumed as Kailas developed within Hindu, Buddhist, and Bön traditions, how five mountains in the Indian Himalayan are also named Kailas, and how Kailas sacred geography constructions and a sacred Ganges source region were related.

Nomads on Pilgrimage

Mongols on Wutaishan (China), 1800-1940

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Isabelle Charleux

Nomads on Pilgrimage: Mongols on Wutaishan (China), 1800-1940 is a social history of the Mongols’ pilgrimages to Wutaishan in late imperial and Republican times. In this period of economic crisis and rise of nationalism and anticlericalism in Mongolia and China, this great Buddhist mountain of China became a unique place of intercultural exchanges, mutual borrowings, and competition between different ethnic groups. Based on a variety of written and visual sources, including a rich corpus of more than 340 Mongolian stone inscriptions, it documents why and how Wutaishan became one of the holiest sites for Mongols, who eventually reshaped its physical and spiritual landscape by their rites and strategies of appropriation.

Series:

Zeev Levin

Zeev Levin seeks to provide a comprehensive picture of government efforts to socialize the Jewish masses in Uzbekistan, a process in which the central Soviet government took part, together with the local, republican and regional administrations and Soviet Jewish activists. This research presents a chapter in the history of the Jews in Uzbekistan, as well as contributing to the study of the socialization process of the Jewish population in the USSR in general. It also contributes to the study of relations among political and government bodies and decision makers. The study is based on archival documents and provides a unique glance at the implementation of Soviet nationalities policy towards Bukharan Jews while comparing it to other national minority groups in Uzbekistan.

Series:

Boris Zhivkov

In Khazaria in the Ninth and the Tenth Centuries Boris Zhivkov offers a new view on Khazaria by scrutinizing the different visions offered by recent scholarship. The paucity of written sources has made it necessary to turn to additional information about the steppe states in this period, and to analyze exceptional cases not directly related to the Khazars. In re-examining the Khazars, he thus uses not only the known documentary sources and archaeological finds but also what we know from history of religions (comparative mythology), history of art, structural anthropology and folklore studies. In this way the book draws together a synthesis of conclusions, information and theory.