Central Asia in World History
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Central Asia in World History

By (author) Peter B. Golden

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A vast region stretching roughly from the Volga River to Manchuria and the northern Chinese borderlands, Central Asia has been called the "pivot of history," a land where nomadic invaders and Silk Road traders changed the destinies of states that ringed its borders, including pre-modern Europe, the Middle East, and China. In Central Asia in World History, Peter B. Golden provides an engaging account of this important region, ranging from prehistory to the present, and focusing largely on the unique melting pot of cultures that this region has produced. Golden describes the traders who braved the heat and cold along caravan routes to link East Asia and Europe; the Mongol Empire of Genghis Khan and his successors, the largest contiguous land empire in history; the invention of gunpowder, which allowed the great sedentary empires to overcome the horse-based nomads; the power struggles of Russia and China, and later Russia and Britain, for control of the area. Finally, he discusses the region today, a key area that neighbors such geopolitical hot spots as Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan, and China.

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  • Paperback | 192 pages
  • 154.94 x 231.14 x 17.78mm | 317.51g
  • 15 Apr 2011
  • Oxford University Press Inc
  • New York
  • English
  • 18 halftones, 6 maps
  • 0195338197
  • 9780195338195
  • 148,531

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Author Information

Peter B. Golden is Professor Emeritus of History and Academic Director of the Middle Eastern Studies Center at Rutgers University, where he has taught since 1969. He has been a recipient of a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Humanities and has been a member of the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton. Among his books are: Khazar Studies: An Historico-Philological Inquiry into the Origins of the Khazars, An Introduction to the History of the Turkic Peoples, Nomads and Sedentary Societies in Medieval Eurasia, and Nomads and their Neighbours in the Russian Steppe: Turks, Khazars and Qipchaqs. His articles and chapters in books have also appeared in Russian, Turkish, Kazakh and Hungarian.

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Review quote

This concise but comprehensive textbook outlines the transformation of Central Asia from prehistory to the collapse of the USSR. ... The scope is ambitious ... the book is chronologically, spatially, and thematically wide-ranging without sacrificing the level of detail in the narrative. Jagjeet Lally, Journal of Global History

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