of the Association for the Advancement of Central Asian Research
Editor: H. B. PAKSOY Vol. II Nos. 1 and 2 February 1989
NSTITUTIONAL MEMBERS: Mir Ali Shir Navai Seminar for Central Asian Languages and Cultures, UCLA; Program for Turkish Studies, UCLA; The Central Asian Foundation, WISCONSIN; Committee on Inner Asian and Altaic Studies, HARVARD U.; Research Institute for Inner Asian Studies, INDIANA U.; Department of Russian and East European Studies, U of MINNESOTA; The National Council for Soviet and East European Research, WASHINGTON D.C.
Alfred E. Senn, On Nationalism, Perspective, and a Few Other Things. 2
Table of Contents:
Bahtiyar Nazarov, Kutadgu Bilig: One of the first written monuments of the aesthetic thought of the Turkic people. 5
News of the Profession 10
Book Reviews 18
On Nationalism, Perspective, and a Few Other Things
Alfred E. Senn
Department of History, University of Wisconsin-Madison
[Professor Senn was formally invited by the Institute of History of the Lithuanian SSR Academy of Sciences in Vilnius to be in residence during Fall 1988. He is fluent in, inter alia, Lithuanian and Russian. As there are close contacts and dialogue between the Central Asians and the Balts, on topics of mutual interest, we welcome Prof. Senn's timely observations -- Ed.]
When the editor of AACAR BULLETIN invited me to write about my experiences in Lithuania in the fall of 1988, I thought of a variety of questions which I now approach in a different way than I did before my stay in the Soviet Union. In the hope that these observations can contribute somehow to the general study of the nationalities of the Soviet Union I decided to offer them here.
The first problem concerns the use of the terms nationalist and nationalism. When I spoke to a Komsomol camp in Lithuania, I was rather surprised by the vehement reaction I received to a reference to Lithuanian nationalism in the 1920s. The young intellectuals objected to the use of the term on the grounds that nationalism carried a variety of bad connotations in both Lithuanian and Russian, their two major languages. They much preferred the use of the term national consciousness or something of that sort, especially in reference to current developments in their land.
Another example of this problem came in the Constituent Congress of the Lithuanian Movement for Perestroika (Sajudis) when the presidinq officer called on the delegation to condemn the Voice of America's Russian Program's referring to their meeting as a nationalist congress (natsionalisticheskii s'ezd) delegates chanted Shame, shame for some fifteen seconds.
For years Soviet authorities have denounced bourgeois nationalism as something evil, something fostering hostility between people of different nationalities, not to mention causing problems for the central authorities. One result of these years of indoctrination is an instinctive reaction on the part of intellectuals among the smaller nationalities against accepting the epithet nationalist as characterizing their thoughts and feelings about the national groups from which they arise. They believe they have a right to live in the region that their ancestors inhabited, and they believe they have a right to use their native language in their daily public life. They correspondingly object to having negative words applied to these feelings.
The American may insist that that is not the way he or she understands the term nationalism -- nationalism is not necessarily identical with chauvinism. Here the problem would seem to be of seducation by false friends -- the assumption that cognates in different languages have identical semantic circles, the same range of connotations. Nationalism in English and natsionalizm in Russian do not. One may yet argue that this represents an acceptance of Leninist definitions, but I would respond that the problem is understanding how any given word is currently used and received in any language.
Using the term nationalism to describe the development of new levels of self-consciousness among the nationalities of the Soviet Union may simply help those who want to discredit them. If it cared to, for example, Moscow radio could certainly cite the Voice of America in criticizing the Lithuanians as nationalist. (A Lithuanian writer, Vytautas Petkevicius, declared, I speak three languages, and a man who speaks just one language called me a nationalist and claims that he is an internationalist.) Just as one might reject terms from other languages because of their political connotations -- after years of reading Marxist-Leninist historiography, for example, I refuse to use the word objective under any circumstances -- one should be careful about using words that walk into other politically motivated semantic circles. Communication, after all, is dependent on using mutually comprehensible words and symbols.
Recognizing the problems of political vocabularies leads into the second topic I would like to raise, namely one of perspective. During my three months in Lithuania I found myself immersed in the political discussions of the day. Those discussions produced interesting poles in the assessment of what was possible in Lithuania. There were of course conservatives, who thought that disaster lay around every corner that one might choose to turn; there were the so-called extremists who thought that this moment of possible weakness and confusion in Moscow offered great opportunity for those who dared to seize it; and there were those who wanted patiently to push forward slowly, avoiding needless confrontation but counting on establishing permanent gains. I had my own thoughts about what was possible but I recognized that the Lithuanians had to make their own decisions on whether to take or avoid risks.
ln the latter part of November, living now in Hamburg and reading the German press, I was struck by the readiness of German journalists to deplore what they considered adventurous actions in Estonia because trouble among the nationalities within the Soviet Union could endanger Mikhail Gorbachev's position in Moscow. These small nationalities, the Germans seemed to be saying, have to understand the bigger picture and await better times to press their particular programs. According to one Lithuanian writer, a West German journalist visiting Vilnius during the summer had actually deplored the activity of the Lithuanians because of the problems they were creating for Gorbachev.
The Lithuanians I had spoken with during my stay there had fully realized that the changes they were experiencing were a result of Gorbachev's policies of glasnost and perestroika. Sajudis very much appreciated the help it had received in August from Gorbachev's emissary Alexander Iakovlev, but the reformers in Vilnius also resented the way Iakovlev turned on them in his interview with the Western press at the end of October. The centralist tendencies of Gorbachev's constitutional reforms inevitably aroused discontent in the other constituent republics of the Soviet Union. The Lithuanians and the other nationalities of the Soviet Union had their own priorities.
The inclination of the journalists to tell the nationalities of the Soviet Union to cool it for the benefit of the central government offers another example of the tendency of Westies of their attitude toward Moscow. Were the events in the Baltic taking place while a Stalin was in power in Moscow, the German journalists would presumably hasten to welcome them. But with Gorbachev in power, those same developments seemed to present danger. The nationalities themselves seem to have little independent value in the world view of those journalists; one can find many similar examples in reviewing the history of Eastern Europe.
But just as the foreign press has its own prism in following the affairs of the nationalities, the specialists too have to understand themselves. In Lithuania I could see the difference between Sajudis, a movement for reform in the Soviet system, and the Lithuanian Liberty League, Lietuvos laisves liga, which advocated Lithuanian independence now. The relations between these two tendencies have shifted and changed over time, and sometimes specific issues seem confused. Nevertheless the outside observer should take extra care in evaluating developments lest his or her own preferences overwhelm analysis and misrepresent the motives of the actors. Perhaps it is an idealistic paradox to suggest that the observer must not be too idealistic, but distorted analyses serve only those who felt no need for new information in the first place.
Another problem that I found particularly striking also related to the nature of reporting that I read after I had left Lithuania, namely, what sources do journalists, and Western specialists too, have in following the events among the nationalities of the Soviet Union. In December, when I visited Lithuanian friends in Chicago, one of their first questions was why the Lithuanians had criticized the Voice of America. They had been unable to figure this out despite the extensive sources that they had in hand.
ln my last days in Vilnius, one friend said to me, Now you will have to go back and again try to follow our developments by just reading the newspapers. In reading the German press, I concluded that the Moscow correspondents were largely paraphrasing articles in the Russian-language press with the help of occasional telephone calls from dissidents. Rereading the press, even press releases, from the time of my stay in Lithuania, I would say that the Russian-language press and those unsolicited telephone calls often did not correspond to my own observations. This is perhaps nothing new to the readers of this publication, but I fe1t I had to mention it.
On the other hand, I must of course hasten to point out that there were those correspondents who established contact with identifiable sources in the region and therefore had more reliab1e information. Romas Sakadolskis of the Lithuanian section of the Voice of America, for example, besides attending the Sajudis convention in Vilnius, telephoned leaders regularly -- his activity was even discussed on Lithuanian television one night as Sajudis leaders felt it necessary to explain their relationship with him. I did not hear his broadcasts, but I heard many Lithuanians quoting him.
In conclusion, I would emphasize that I found my own vocabulary, perspective, and understanding of both western and Soviet media very much affected by my experiences in Lithuania. This was a period of exciting change, and I tried to make the most of it. My thanks go to H. B. Paksoy for the opportunity to deliver myself of these thoughts.
KUTADGU BILIG: One of the first written monuments of the aesthetic thought of the Turkic people.
Doctor of Science (Philology); Director,
Institute for Language and Literature, Uzbek Academy of Sciences,
[This paper is adapted from a presentation given at the 30th meeting of PIAC, held at Indiana University, Bloomington, during 1987. The couplets quoted from Kutadgu Bilig by Dr. Nazarov were in the original. English translations and references are substituted from Robert Dankoff (Tr.), Wisdom of Royal Glory: Kutadgu Bilig (Chicago, 1983), indicated pages. -- Ed.]
Kutadgu Bilig by Yusuf Balasagun (completed 1070 A.D) is one of the first written literary monuments of the aesthetical thought of the Turkic people.
In the history of the mankind, almost without exception, every state, every empire, every social formation is reflected not only in their historical works and scientific treatises but also in great art works of oral and written character, that gives the future generations rather vivid and clear representation of the detailed picture about the life of the society and the people of the previous epoch.
Among those is one the first written masterpieces of the Turkic language people Kutadgu Bilig appeared in the period when the Samanid empire was in decline and the Karahanid state was emerging -- which existed from the middle of the IX th up to the beginning of the XIII century on the territory of the Eastern and Western Turkestan.
This wonderful work of Turkic and of world written literature has become the object of investigation by many scholars: Russian, Turkish, German, English, French, Hungarian, Uyghur and others. Noteworthy are the investigations of such scholars of different generations as A.Vambery, R.Radloff, S.E.Malov, V.V.Bartold, E.E.Bertels, F.K pr l zade, A.Kononov, R.R.Arat, A.Dilachar, A.Valitov, E.K.Tenishev, N.A.Baskakov, S.N.Ivanov, I.V.Steblev, D.Majidenov, U.Asanaliev, K.Ashuraliev, Fitrat, S.Mutalibov, G.Abdurakhmanov, N.Mallallaev, A.Kajumov, K.Karimov should be mentioned.
It should also be emphasized that the dissertations of the young specialists Bakijan Tukhliev and Kasimjan Sadikov in Tashkent are dedicated to the investigation of this work, which in its turn gives evidence that the problems of studying the literary heritage of our national cultural traditions takes one of the central positions at the present time.
Acquaintance with the ample literature dedicated to Kutadgu Bilig by Yusuf Balasagun shows that the specialists up to the present time addressed mainly the linguistic, literary, philosophical, political, social and didactic aspects of the work. Special investigation from the point of view of aesthetical problems is still missing. If at all, they are touched extremely superficially, while Kutadgu Bilig is in its essence one of the first valuable sources of Turkic-language written literature, where the formation of the aesthetic thought of Turkic people is reflected most vividly and deeply. This consideration caused the choice of the subject of the present short communication. This is, of course, a very large theme, requiring efforts of many specialists to solve it. Taking advantage of the case, l would like all colleagues to pay attention to this problem in their investigations, since the study of the problem is of both scholarly and practical importance in the cause of developing cultural and moral values in our present unique world, the aesthetic values of Kutadgu Bilig are considerable from our point of view because having a general humane nature, they can have rather objective and direct influence on the development of moral basis of the nature of the modern personality irrespective of the social structure to which it belongs.
We are convinced that the books like Kutadgu Bilig are necessary for us at the present time, since in it we can find answers to the urgent, exciting questions, the answers which our ancestors left as their legacy to us. In our communication we are trying to enlighten the aspects of aesthetic problems, reflected in Kutadgu Bilig.
One of the central problems in aesthetics is known to be the problem of beauty. Democritus saw beauty in the order, symmetry and harmony of one part to the other. It must be noted here, that Yusuf Balasagun's views in relation to the beautiful coincide in many aspects with those of Aristotle and Confucius.
In order to be beautiful, esteemed in society, a person, in our case the Grand Chamberlain (the post Yusuf Balasagun occupied at the Karakhanid court), according to Yusuf, must possess both inner and outer beauty. Thus, the beauty in the man acts as the whole category in Yusuf's conception. The harmony and symmetry of the mind, physical beauty and moral basis in a man, especially the man influencing the life of the society, is one of the central principles of the aesthetic conception of Yusuf. On this occasion he writes the following: [Pp.119-123]
...He should be handsome in appearance.... He should have a sound mind and a quiet demeanor. The man with a sound mind does not forget his word.... He should have a humble and quiet heart, full of compassion. And he should be skillful and knowledgeable about royal custom. It is skillful men who produce all the beautiful objects in the world... He should have a cheerful face and smiling eyes...
Here to some extent one can not help but notice the nearness of Yusuf's conception to the classical understanding and treatment of the beautiful - known to us from aesthetic views of the ancient philosophers - the harmony of the beautiful in both spirit and mind.
In our opinion, Yusuf's understanding of the beautiful is one of considerable achievements of aesthetic thoughts of Turkic people, expressed in written form. This is simultaneously one of the significant treatments of the conception of man.
The understanding of this problem by the author is, of course, in the ideal rather than real attitude to existence, for one can not forget that it matters to the Chamberlain, whose class criteria were on the side of the ruling elite, to whom this highest title was given at that time. lt should be emphasized, however, that Yusuf, developing his aesthetic views, states a number of important ideas, applicable to the present day.
The beautiful in man, the beautiful man can not exist by himself, isolated from other people, from society; more concretely, these qualities of man can be evaluated positively only in the case when they are useful to other people. That is, as seen from Yusuf's conception, the beautiful acts, on the one hand, inseparably with utility, but on the other hand, it begins to acquire public and social significance. Here, in our opinion, it would be appropriate to make an analogy between these thoughts of Yusuf and those of Socrates who spoke about the usefulness and purposefulness of the beautiful.
Yusuf Balasagun expresses his views in the following: [Pp.219-220]
Do not give a job to someone simply because he happens to be in your service; rather take into your service men who will be of genuine use to you.... Remove useless men from your service. As for those who are of use and benefit, give them appropriate jobs and provide them with honor and reward.
Thus, according to Yusuf, the beautiful in man, the beautiful in his deeds exists not only in manifesting the individual but at the same time is in the social significance of the manifested. Therefore, from our point of view, Yusuf approaches the understanding and treatment of the beautiful as a public and social phenomenon, which makes it possible to speak about the social purposefulness of his aesthetic views.
However, the author of Kutadgu Bilig does not stop here. He goes further. In his work, consisting of about 6500 couplets, written more than nine centuries ago, from the very beginning to the very end there is the leading, main idea about the harmonious beautiful man, and it is not by chance that the author names the main character (the hero) K ntugdi [Rising Sun], personifying Justice. Thus, in Yusuf's opinion, everything which is connected with social and personal life of man, can become beautiful only if it is associated with justice in its high and ideal meaning. Without justice man's life will be as if the sun is eclipsed.
All this to some extent witnesses the democratic purposefulness of Yusuf's views, though due to the narrowness of his outlook, he sometimes manifests a tendentious attitude toward simple people. In special sections of the book, dedicated to peasants, poor people, craftsmen, stock-breeders, blacksmiths, shoe makers, carpenters, carvers, archers, the author gives tribute to the common people, but nonetheless, the sympathy of Yusuf in the first instance refers to the representative of the ruling classes. In this, one can see, of course, class narrowness of the author of Kutadgu Bilig. Nevertheless, this does not diminish the value of the basic, progressive conceptions and thoughts which are presented in the book of Yusuf Balasagun.
It is noteworthy, that sometimes Yusuf manifests separate moments of realizing (of course, not in the modern understanding but on the level of thinking of his times) the class difference between people. He states [in P.141] that he who has riches, has long hands.
It should be emphasized that Yusuf is apt to associate the beauty in human deeds first of all with his attitude to labor, to his skill. [P.130-1]
Naturally, one should bear in mind that in relation to the problem of human perfection Yusuf is firmly connected with theological views of his time, that cannot be otherwise. Therefore, much, if not everything in human perfection is treated by Yusuf as the gift of the Most High to his obedient servants. In Yusuf's opinion, the whole of human nature, all the beautiful in man: his mind, his senses, etc. is the gift of God. But not all the beautiful, earthly is treated by Yusuf in this manner.
Strange as it may seem, the fact that the praising of the hereafter, its rewards and benefits are almost missing in Kutadgu Bilig. Yusuf mainly praises the earthly joy of life and the beauty of the real world, where man lives and works. The most beautiful for the poet seems to be the beauty of nature which is limitless and endless. And therefore he praises this beauty with great strength.
It is known that under the rubric word, is meant the polynomial attribute of the human reason and thought. But the word alone, though very good and correct, is not the very essence of the subject arising from it. Yusuf writes that a good word should become a good deed. [P.47]. Those words appear as if being addressed to us from the remote past. They sound so modern, they need no comment.
But the unity of the words and the deeds should express the wisdom in the decision of this or that problem. According to Yusuf this is not a result, but a purpose. The real result is not only the display of wisdom, but it is in its realization, in motion. That is why he says definitely: Any man may don a cloak of honor, but true nobility belongs to the man of wisdom and intellect. [P.49].
Really, these are beautiful, aphoristic lines, which can sound quite sharply today. Speak knowledgeably, therefore, and your words will be an eye to the blind. - he writes [P.45]. In our opinion it is the word art that is meant here. The word art has to bear a social moral content, which could help a person to get rid of his personal defects and misfortunes. This should become a definite life guide.
Developing his thought in this direction, Yusuf puts forward the following beautiful words, which have not lost their meaning in our days and resound even more sharply:The criminal is hanged by force of intellect, and civil turmoil is suppressed by means of wisdom. [P.46].
This means that according to Yusuf's study, knowledge, the power of the word and the power of reason are more powerful than weapons. To prevent evil and fault it is necessary to be able to use this great power.
Those words of our ancient ancestor impose a deep obligation upon us - inhabitants of the planet at the end of the 20th century to use the power of reason when solving any kind of conflict. Yusuf noted that the words of poets were more sharp than a sword. Like art in Aristotle's works, according to Yusuf, the word is the means of refinement of people's souls from personal negative passions and one of the main sources of the joy of comprehension.
The main component of Beauty is kindness. This opinion of Balasagun testifies to the unity of his point of view with that of Confucius's. A person should always be kind in his thoughts and deeds, owing to kindness he can comprehend the source of joy. Yusuf calls every person to be among the people and to present each other joy and happiness.
According to Yusuf Balasagun the most ugly thing in life is violence in any form. The poet compares violence with a burning fire [P.106], which swallows everybody approaching it. Contrary to violence, Yusuf puts forward Justice and compares it to water - the source of life. Because of water everything is alive. It is necessary to point out here, that to prove his aesthetic concepts the author addresses the things and phenomena of the Earth, not the world of paradise or hell. He composes his artistic characters using the natural phenomena surrounding man. This fact emphasizes their nearness to life and their influence on the reader.
lt is an important element in Yusuf Balasagun's aesthetics. The traditions of his aesthetics influenced greatly the development of the artistic and aesthetic thought of the Turkic people of the following ages. In his poetry Yusuf addresses the problems of justice, comparing it to a living water and he addresses oppression, comparing it to burning fire. For example [in P.142] Yusuf says to his ruler that he put out the burning fire of oppression by his living water of justice. These opinions of the author were his ideals and somehow exalted the ruler; in the other couplets Yusuf wrote about injustice and ignorance existing in the society of those times. There is no truth in life, there is no justice and understanding -- he says bitterly in his book.
There are some lines in Kutadgu Bilig where the poet speaks about justice as the most beautiful thing and about oppression as the most ugly thing not only in the Karakhanid's empire but all over the world. He continues:
Speech is descended from blue heaven to brown earth, and it is by means of speech that man ennobles his soul. Man's heart is like a bottomless sea and wisdom is the pearl that lies at the bottom: if he fails to bring the pearl up out of the sea it could just as well be a pebble as a pearl... As long as the wise man does not bring out wisdom upon his tongue, his wisdom may lie hidden for years and shed no light. Fine things indeed are wisdom and intellect: put them to work, if you possess them, and you will soar to heaven.
Kutadgu Bilig was created in Kashgar and dedicated to Tabgach-Bugra Karakhan, describing the events of the Kagan's life and including his education. In its artistic content and philosophical direction, the work goes beyond the confines of this limited purpose and, in general the work is of universal humanistic and human character. The same can be said about the aesthetic value of the work.
From the portions quoted above, one can see, that Yusuf pays special attention to the problems of justice and oppression, prosperity and destruction. Hence, Yusuf's aesthetic opinions have the character of an aesthetic ideal. The progressive people of his time dreamed of this ideal and strove for it.
So Yusuf Balasagun's appeals to justice and oppression represent contrasting forces, manifesting themselves first in beauty, and second, in ugliness. It is necessary to note that the great son of his time calls his rulers to follow the first force and to deny the second one. These ideas of Yusuf are very progressive for his epoch. One can say that they had not lost their meaning even in our days. The aesthetic views of Yusuf, keeping in step with every period of human development, are powerful and modern.
In conclusion I want to say to my colleagues, to the participants of all international forums, that we should pay more and more attention to study the artistic heritage of remotest times, for example to the investigation of Kutadgu Bilig.
It is sufficient to remember that the Fourth Special Conference on Turkology, held in Leningrad in 1970, was devoted to the 9OOth anniversary of Kutadgu Bilig's creation. During the last two years, two poetical translations of Kutadgu Bilig were made in Uzbekistan. The translations into modern Uzbek were made by Sadulla Ahmad and Bakijan Tuhliyev. Fifteen years ago this work was published in transcription with interpretation by K.Karimov. Two years from now, we are going to celebrate the 920th anniversary of this unique masterpiece of Turkic people. In this connection I have a proposal: perhaps it would be reasonable for the international scholarly community to begin preparations to mark this date. Nevertheless it would not be inappropriate, if a group of experts meet in Tashkent where one of three extant manuscripts of Yusuf Balasagun is preserved.
This measure would promote further strenghthening of international scholarly cooperation working in the difficult but very noble branch of modern social sciences.
NEWS OF THE PROFESSION
AACAR has two new Institutional Members: Research Institute for Inner Asian Studies, INDIANA UNIVERSITY; The National Council for Soviet and East European Research, WASHINGTON D.C. We extend our warm collegial welcome.
AACAR MONOGRAPH SERIES Editorial Board, composed of Thomas ALLSEN (Trenton State College) (Secretary of the Board), Peter GOLDEN (Rutgers), Thomas NOONAN (U of Minnesota) Omeljan PRITSAK (Harvard), Morris ROSSABI (Columbia), is interested in receiving manuscripts pertaining to the history, literatures and cultures of Central and Inner Asia. All communications should be sent to Prof. Thomas ALLSEN, Secretary of the Editorial Board, AACAR MONOGRAPH SERIES, c/o History Department, Trenton State College, Trenton, NJ 08625.
AACAR shall hold regular elections for President, Secretary, Treasurer and a Member at large to the Executive Committee. Paid- up AACAR members will be eligible to vote. Certified Ballots will be sent to the address of record during the second half of 1989 by the election committee. Please be sure we have your correct address.
Current and future members of AACAR should be advised that the Central and Inner Asian Studies journal is edited, produced and distributed on its own schedule. Vol. 3 of CIAS was mailed during December 1988.
NATIONAL ENDOWMENT FOR THE HUMANITIES (Washington DC 20506) announced sixty-four Summer Seminars for College Teachers for the Summer of 1989. Two are directly relevant to the readership: 1. FROM THE SILK ROUTE TO AFGHANISTAN: APPROACHES TO THE STUDY OF CENTRAL ASIA, June 11 to August 4 1989 (six weeks); Directed by Eden NABY and Richard FRYE. Contact: Eden NABY, 612 Herter Hall, U. of Massachusetts, Amherst MA 01003. 2. BUDDHISM AND CULTURE, June 19 to August 11 1989 (eight weeks); Directed by: William R. LaFLEUR and Stephen F. TEISER. Contact: Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures, Royce Hall, RM 290, UCLA, Los Angeles CA 90024. For further information on other NEH seminars, contact: NEH Seminars Program, 202/786-0463.
32nd Meeting of PIAC (Permanent International Altaistic Conference) will be held in Oslo-Norway, 11-16 June 1988, under the Presidency of Bernt BRENDEMOEN. Contact: Denis SINOR, Secretary General, Goodbody Hall 101, Indiana U., Bloomington, IN 47405.
Central Asia and its Neighbors: Mutual Influences conference will be held 26-30 June 1989 by the European Seminar on Central Asian Studies (ESCAS III). Contact: Prof. Remy DOR, ESCAS III, Institut d'etudes Turques, 13 Rue de Santeuil, 75231 Paris Cedex 05.
33rd International Congress of ASIAN and NORTH AFRICAN STUDIES is to meet at the University of Toronto, Canada, August 19-25, 1990. The theme is Contacts Between Cultures. Contact: Secretariat, 33rd ICANAS, c/o Prof. Julia CHING, Victoria College, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario M5S 1K7, Canada.
INDIANA UNIVERSITY is conducting a search for a position in CENTRAL ASIAN STUDIES, with emphasis on social sciences. Salary and rank will be commensurate with ability and experience. Qualifications: Ph. D., good (preferrably native) knowledge of at least one Central Asian language, and demonstrated excellence in research and teaching. Post is in Department of Uralic and Altaic Studies, to commence August 1989.
American Council of Learned Societies has announced a program to initiate new teaching positions in East European studies. Applications must be prepared by institutions. Contact: Jason H. PARKER, ACLS, 228 E 45th Str, NY NY 10017.
Columbia University Seminar for Studies in the History and Culture of the Turks is continuing under the direction of Prof. Kathleen BURRILL. The 1988-89 program is as follows: 16 Sep. Elena FRANGAKIS-SYRETT (Queens College) Izmir's Trade With Western Europe in the 18th and early 19th Centuries; 7 Oct. Geoffrey L. LEWIS (Prof. Emeritus, Oxford) Bab r: the Professional King; 18 Nov. Mark PINSON (Harvard) Online Resources for Turkish and Middle Eastern Studies; 16 Dec. Erica GILSON (Columbia) Computers in Foreign Language Instruction: The State of the Art.; 27 Jan. Thomas GOODRICH (Indiana U. of Pennsylvania) Ottoman Cartography: An Illustrated Lecture on Maps of the 16th-17th Centuries; 17 Feb. Ellen ERVIN (Columbia) The Novels of Adalet Agaoglu: Feminism in Contemporary Turkey; 24 Mar. Madeline ZILFI (U. of Maryland-College Park) A Medrese for the Palace: Ottoman Dynastic Legitimation in the Eighteenth Century; 21 Apr. Viktor OSTAPCHUK (Harvard) The Role of the Black Sea Frontier in Ottoman, Polish and Moscovite Relations in the First Half of the 17th Century. Contact: Ms. Eileen McKEON, c/o Center of Turkish Studies, 616 Kent Hall, Columbia U., NY, NY 10027.
ARIT (American Research Institute in Turkey) will be celebrating the 25th anniversary of its founding. Contact: ARIT, Oriental Institute, 1155 E. 58th St. Chicago, IL 60637.
Details of the COUNCIL FOR INTERNATIONAL EXCHANGE OF SCHOLARS research support programs (in Asia, Midle East) are available from: CIES, Eleven Dupont Circle, Washington DC 20036. Fulbright Scholar-in-Residence Program information may be obtained from the same address.
The Fundamentalism Project, undertaken by the American Academy of Arts and Sciences (est. 1780), and funded by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, has held one of its public conferences at the University of Chicago 15-17 November 1988. The collected essays, it is reported, will be issued in a volume entitled Fundamentalism Observed. For future conferences in the series and other details, contact: The Fundamentalism Project, Swift Hall, 1025 E. 58th Str., Chicago, IL 60637.
NATIONAL COMMITTEE ON UNITED STATES-CHINA RELATIONS, INC. is seeking nominations for its Scholar Orientation Program, which has so far provided more than 500 Chinese scholars -- studying at US universities -- over the past eight years the chance to reach beyond their campus experiences within the US. Contact: 777 United Nations Plaza, NY, NY 10017. 212/922-1385.
JOSEPH FLETCHER MEMORIAL LECTURE, sponsored by the Committee of THE JOSEPH F. FLETCHER, JR. FUND FOR INNER ASIAN STUDIES at HARVARD UNIVERSITY was given by Denis C. TWITCHETT (Gordon Wu Professor of Chinese History, Department of East Asian Studies, Princeton University), on November 10, 1988 at Harvard U.
Oxford University Press has announced the Population Atlas of China. [$250 + $7.50 (postage)]. Contact: OUP Humanities & Social Sciences Dept. 200 Madison Ave. NY NY 10016. All orders from individuals must be prepaid.
The Harriman Institute Forum is a monthly serial, which began publication during 1988, featuring a major essay on the USSR in every issue. For subscriptions: The Harriman Institute, Columbia University, 420 W. 118th St. NY NY 10027.
ASEEPL Abstracts of Soviet & East European Emigre Periodical Literature, published since 1981, Edited by Leonid KHOTIN, is available for subscription. Contact: 1400 Shattuck Ave. Ste 7, # 10, Berkeley, CA 94705.
Research on the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe, an interdisciplinary annual series is announced. Contact: T. Anthony JONES, Harvard RRC, 1737 Cambridge, Cambridge MA 02138.
The Bulletin of the Csoma de K r s Symposium offers regular information and bibliography in the fields of Tibetan, Central Asian and Lamaistic studies. It is normally issued twice yearly. Contact: Dr. J. TERJEK, Library of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences, H-1361 Budapest P. O. B. 7
Modern Asian Studies, a journal concerned with the history, geography, politics, sociology, literature, economics and social anthropology is available from Cambridge Univ. Press. Contact: 32 E 57th Str., NY NY 10022.
Current History, a monthly journal founded in 1914 by The New York Times, is seeking new subscribers. Specializing in single topic issues, every year the journal publishes dedicated numbers on China, Soviet Union, Middle East. Contact: 4225 Main Str., Philadelphia PA 19127.
CITIZENS EXCHANGE COUNCIL Communique is available from: 12 W. 31st Str., NY NY 10001.
BEYOGLU KITAP ILIK LTD has issued a beautifully prepared catalog, DIWAN, of rare books and out of print periodicals, including titles on Central Asian topics in several languages and alphabets. Contact: Mr. Ayhan AKTAR or Mr. Ugur G RACAR, Galip Dede Cad. 141/5, T nel, 80050 Istanbul. Phone: 149 06 72.
E. J. BRILL issues, inter alia, regular catalogues on Central Asian topics. Handbuch der Orientalistic is also available. Contact: E. J. BRILL, P. O. Box 9000, 2300 PA Leiden, The Netherlands.
OXUS BOOKS published Central Asia Catalogue . Conntact: Oriental Booksellers, 121 Astonville Str., London SW18 5AQ, UK.
ARIS & PHILLIPS Ltd. issues occasional catalogues on Central Asia. Contact: Teddington House, Warminster, BA12 8PQ, UK.
Perspectives on the Islamic World: Basics and Some Major Trends was the theme of a conference and workshop held at the U. of Connecticut, Greater Hartford Campus, 14 October 1988, co- sponsored by U. of Connecticut, The Middle East Institute (Washington DC), Connecticut Council for the Social Studies, Inc., Connecticut State Department of Education, and the World Affairs Center of Hartford, Inc. Papers included; Howard REED (U Connecticut-Storrs), Ali ASANI (Harvard), Amb. Christopher Von HOLLEN (Middle East Institute), Amb. Herman EILTS (Boston U.).
The Impact of the 1838 Anglo-Turkish Convention: Anatolia and Egypt Compared was the topic of a conference at the State University of New York at Binghamton 7-8 October 1988, co- sponsored by Southwest Asian/North African Studies Program; Fernand Braudel Center for the Study of Economies, Historical Systems and Civilizations; Institute of Turkish Studies (Washington DC). The following scholars presented papers: Roger OWEN (Keynote- St. Antony's, Oxford U.); Feroz AHMAD (U. of Massachusetts); Resat KASABA (U. of Washington); Roderic DAVISON (George Washington); Fred H. LAWSON (Mills Coll.); Sevket PAMUK (Villanova); Zafer TOPRAK (Bogazi i); Elena FRANGAKIS-SYRETT (Queens Coll.) Sarah SHIELDS (Kansas State U.); Robert VITALIS (Texas); Beatrice St. LAURENT (Harvard) Ellis GOLDBERG (U. of Washington); Nancy MICKLEWRIGHT (U. of Michigan); Nathan BROWN (George Washington); Paul BLANK (Middlebury Coll.); Stephan ASTOURIAN (UCLA); ROUND TABLE: Aglar KEYDER, Don PERETZ; Donald QUATAERT, Immanuael WALLERSTEIN.
Fordham University Middle East Studies Program Outreach Lecture Series, Critical Issues in Middle East Politics, presented a colloquium entitled Turkey as Bridge in the North-South Dialogue on 24 Oct. 1988. Dankwart A. RUSTOW and Walter F. WEIKER were the featured speakers. For future programs, contact: Ralph. A. VALENTE, Director of Outreach, Middle East Studies Program, Fordham U., NY NY 10458. Phone: 212/841-5375.
Prof. Howard REED will be retiring from the History Department of University of Connecticut-Storrs at the end of 1988-9 academic year.
S. Enders WIMBUSH has been appointed Director of Radio Liberty. * Eden NABY is now teaching both at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst and at Columbia University.
Masayuki YAMA-UCHI (University of Tokyo) has published THE GREEN ARMY, THE DIVINE ARMY AND THE RED ARMY. (In Japanese). In our previous issue, the details of Prof. Masayuki YAMA-UCHI's book were somewhat scrambled. We offer our sincere apologies.
Peter REDDAWAY has moved to George Washington University, vacating his post as the Program Secretary at the Kennan Institute for Advanced Russian Studies (KIARS), Wilson Center, Smithsonian Institution.
Blair RUBLE has been appointed to take over as the Program Secretary of the KIARS, beginning late spring 1989. At this writing, a search was on to replace Dr. RUBLE at the SSRC post which he is vacating.
Thomas S. NOONAN (U of Minnesota) gave a seminar entitled The Millenium of Russia's First Perestroika: Economic Development and Technology Transfer under Saint Vladimir at KIARS, 13 September '88
Audrey L. ALTSTADT (CCSU) has received a short term KIARS grant.
Prof. Kemal H. KARPAT (U of Wisconsin-Madison) has received IREX travel funding for research in Hungary.
Sarah Moment ATIS (U of Wisconsin-Madison) has received a Rockfeller grant and is spending 1988-9 at the U of Michigan as a writer in residence
Edward LAZZERINI (U of New Orleans) has been appointed Director of the Pacific Basin Program of his university.
Azade-Ayse RORLICH (USC) has been asked to head the International Studies Program of her university.
Cornell FLEISCHER (Washington U.) has received a MacARTHUR Fellowship.
John PERRY (U of Chicago) has received an Indo-American Fellowship to study Arabic and Persian manuscripts in Indian libraries.
Albert HOURANI (Oxford-Emeritus) has been elected Honorary Member of American Historical Association.
Hisao KOMATSU (Tokai University) has published a paper entitled Bukhara in the Central Asian Perspective: Group Identity in 1910-1928 in the Tokyo University Institute of Oriental Culture series
Ludwig W. Adamec (U of Arizona) has published A Biographical Dictionary of Contemporary Afghanistan, which is available from Akademische Druck-u. Verlagsanstalt, Neufeldweg 75, A-8010 Graz/Austria. Information on Prof. Adamec's four volume Historical Gazetteer of Iran, 1976-88 is available from the U of Arizona, Department of Oriental Studies, Tucson, AZ 85721.
Comite International D'Etudes Pre-Ottomanes et Ottomanes VIIIth Symposium was held at the U. of Minnesota-Humphrey Center 14-19 August 1988, Caesar E. FARAH Presiding. Under the theme of Decision Making and the Transmission of Authority in the Turkic System, the following papers were read:
Halil INALCIK (Keynote Speaker, Chicago-Emeritus) Decision Making in the Ottoman State;
Bruce MASTERS (Wesleyan) The Implementation of the Anglo-Ottoman Capitulatory Treaty of 1675;
Christoph NEUMANN (Institute for the Culture and History of the Near East and Turkey, Munich) Decision Making in Ottoman Foreign Policy About 1780;
Ezel Kural SHAW (California State-Northridge) Integrity and Integration: Assumptions and Expectations Behind Solutions to the Eastern Question;
Pal FODOR (Hungarian Academy of Sciences) Dilemmas of a Political Decision: The Ottoman Occupation of Hungary, 1541;
Geza DAVID (U. of Budapest) Decision Making on the Confines: Administrative Problems in the 16th Century Ottoman Hungary;
Robert OLSON (U. of Kentucky) The Significance of the 1740 Treaty Between the Ottoman Empire and France;
Muhammad BENABOUD (Mohammed V U. - Rabat) Ottoman Authority and Power in the Arab Provinces in the Eyes of an 18th Century Moroccan Ambassador;
Josef MATUZ (U. of Freiburg) Practices of Transmitting Decisions by the Central to Local Authorities and Foreign Powers in Both the Ottoman Empire and the Crimean Khanate;
Michel Le GALL (St. Olaf Coll.) Centralization & Decentralization in Late 19th c. Ottoman Provincial Administration: A note from Tripolitania;
Sinan KUNERALP (ISIS Publishing) Career Patterns of XIXth c. Ottoman Diplomats;
Thomas GOODRICH (Indiana U. of Pennsylvania) A 17th c. Atlas in the 1526 Kitab-i Bahriye of Piri Reis;
Danuta CHMIELOWSKA (Warsaw U.) The Image of Ottoman Turks in Polish Travel Literature;
Timothy COATS (U. of Minnesota) The 1540 Captain's Log of D. Joao de Castro's Red Sea Voyage in the context of 16th c. Portuguese-Ottoman Rivalry;
Gy rg HAZAI (Hungarian Academy of Sciences) Travelers in the Ottoman Empire: A Bibliographic Project;
Keith HOPWOOD (St. David's Coll.-Wales) The Formation of the Begliks of Pre-Ottoman era;
Yitchzak KEREM (Jerusalem) Immigration Patterns From Greece to the Ottoman Empire in the 19th c.;
Ethel STEWART (Ottawa-Canada) An Apache Tribe of Turkish Origins;
Muhammad Al-AIDAROOS (UAR U.) A Comparative Study between the Ottoma Turks and the Spanish Crusaders;
Jacob LANDAU (The Hebrew U.) Research Projects on the History of Jews in Ottoman Egypt;
Roderic DAVISON (George Washington) The Impact of the Electric Telegraph on the Conduct of Ottoman Foreign Policy;
David KUSHNER (U. of Haifa) The Haifa-Damascus Railway: The British Phase 1891-1902;
Janos HOVARI (Hungarian Academy of Sciences) Ottoman Commercial Activity at the Southern Border of Hungary Before the Battle of Mohacs;
Butros LABAKI (Lebanese U.) The Commercial Network of Beirut in the last 25 Years of Ottoman Rule;
Rachel SIMON (U. of Washington) Commercial and Communication Networks in Ottoman Libya;
Momir JOVIC (Pristina U.-Yugoslavia) Communications Between Adriatic Cities and the Turkish Hinterland in the Balkans up to the XVI c.;
Virginia AKSAN (U. of Toronto) Ottoman Sources of Information on Europe in the 18th c.;
Jean-Louis BACQUE-GRAMMONT (French Institute- Istanbul) Cimetieres ottomans et banque de donees. Premieres remarques;
Nacereddine SAIDOUNI (U. d'Alger) Fonds des archives algeriennes relatifs a l'epoque ottomane-Contenu-Exploitation;
Issam KHALIFAH (Lebanese U.) Capuchin Archives on Lebanon in Ottoman History;
Andrea ZSIGA-KISS (Hungarian Academy of Sciences) Waqf Conscriptions in Hungary Under Ottoman Rule (16th-17th c.);
Melik DELILBASI (U. of Ankara; Fellow, Dunbarton Oaks) The Significance of Ottoman Archives and the Tahrir Defters for Ionnina;
Alexander H. de GROOT ((U. of Leiden); Ekmeleddin IHSANOGLU (Research Center for Islamic History, Art and Culture, Istanbul) Bashoca Ishak Efendi as a Pioneer of Modern Science in the Ottoman State;
Howard A. REED (U. of Connecticut) Turkish American Educational Cooperation: Over a Century of Achievement;
Martin STROHMEIER (U. of Bamberg) Education in Ottoman Lebanon, ca. 1880-1917;
Donald QUATAERT (SUNY-Binghamton) Conditions of Labor in Ottoman Factories, 1800-1914;
Maria TODOROVA (Fellow-Wilson Center; U. of Sofia) Midhad Pasha's Governership of the Danube Province;
Abdul Aziz AWAD (Yarmouk U.) Ottoman Public Administration in Concept and Practice in the 19th c.;
Abdul-Karim RAFEQ (U. of Damascus) Society and Economy in Ottoman Syria in the 1650s;
Joseph Abou NOHRA (Lebanese U.) Le role preponderant des conseillers (mudabbirs) Moronites dans le governement de Mont-Liban au 18e siecle;
Linda DARLING (U. of Chicago) The Finance Scribes and Ottoman Politics;
Douglas HOWARD (Indiana U.) Central and Provincial Administrative Interaction in Timar Bestowals and the Meaning of New Developments in the early 17th c.;
Palmira BRUMMETT (U. of Tennessee) The Ottoman-Safavid and Center- Province Frontiers: A Case of Campaign Troop Mobilization, 1577- 1581;
Daniel GOFFMAN (Ball State) Ottoman Authorities and the Contours of Commerce in Aleppo, Istanbul and Izmir, 1600-1700;
Tadeusz MAJDA (Warsaw U.) Nabi's Fethname-i Kameni e as a Historical Source;
N. OIKONOMIDES (U. of Montreal) The Turks in 12th c. Byzantine Literature;
Abdul-Rahim ABU-HUSAYN (AUB) Juridical Literature as a Source for the Social History of and Religious Trends in Ottoman Syria;
Samir SEIKALY (AUB) The Fatawa of Khayr al-Din al-Ramli;
Jan SCHMIDT (U. of Leiden) Fazil Beg Enderuni, Social Historian or Poet?;
Robert DANKOFF (U. of Chicago) The Last Days of Melek Ahmed Pasha;
Nimetullah HAFIZ (U. of Pristine) Kosova Turk Destanlarinda Tarih Kaynaklari;
Tacida HAFIZ (N.A.) Nobelci Ivo Andri 'in 'Travnik Olaylari' ve 'Drina K pr s ' Eserlerinde Osmanlilar;
C. Max KORTEPETER (NYU) System Analysis and the Ottoman Empire;
E. ZRCHER (Catholic U.-Nijmegen) A Biographical Dictionary of the Turkish Revolution;
Mark PINSON (Harvard) Reforms of the Second Tanzimat Period (1856-76) in Bulgaria, Through the Eyes of Foreigners and of a Computer;
Frederic DeJONG ((U. of Utrecht) The Transmission of Authority Over the Bektashi Tekkes in Iraq in the Ottoman Period;
Ahmed Ibrahim DIAB (Omdurman Islamic U.- Sudan) The Relations Between the Mahdiyya and the Sanusiyya;
Dina LeGALL (Princeton) The Naqshbandi Order in the Ottoman Middle East: The Early Phases;
Saidi BAYRAM (General Dir. of Vakiflar-Ankara) An Ahi Geneology.
6th INTERNATIONAL TURCOLOGY CONFERENCE was held in Istanbul, 19- 23 September 1988, Prof. Dr. Ali ALPASLAN (Director, Turcology Research Center) presiding. More than two-hundred papers were read by scholars from twenty-seven countries in twenty-eight sessions. For further details or future activities, contact: Yd. Do . Dr. Osman SERTKAYA, Secretary General, Turcology, Istanbul niversitesi Edebiyat Fak ltesi, Istanbul.
INTERNATIONAL TURKISH LANGUAGE CONFERENCE was held in Ankara, at the T rk Dil Kurumu, 26 September-3 October 1988, Organizing Committee consisting: Hasan EREN, Zeynep KORKMAZ, Hamza Z LFIKAR, Osman SERTKAYA. Sixty-eight papers were read by scholars from nineteen countries in eight sessions. For further details or future activities, contact: Prof. Dr. Hasan EREN, Director, T rk Dil Kurumu, Atat rk Bul. 217, Kavaklidere-Ankara.
Ross E. Dunn, The Adventures of Ibn Battuta: A Muslim Traveler of the 14th Century. University of California Press, 1986. Pp.357.
Of Tamarshirin, the Chaghatay ruler whose camp near Samarkand he visited in 1333 or 1335, Ibn Battuta reports (in Gibb's translation): He used to sit reciting a litany in Turkish after the dawn prayer until sunrise.... What do we know about such Turkish litanies? And how did it happen that a Moroccan faqih was on hand to overhear them?
Dunn's book does not attempt to answer questions of the first sort. It does an excellent job answering questions of the third sort: the romance of Ibn Battuta's life takes shape and substance in Dunn's recounting. As for the questions of the second sort: Dunn provides brief essays explaining the background of the major episodes in the traveler's account. Thus we learn enough about the Mongol conquests (p.83), or about education in Mecca (p.108), or about Indian ocean shipping (p.120) -- or, in the instance in the question, about the Chaghatay khanate (p.177) -- to be able to place Ibn Battuta's reports in their proper contexts. Taken together, these essays, though based on secondary sources and somewhat superficial, provide a fine survey of Eurasian geography during the waning of Pax Mongolica.
Dunn devotes chapters to each of the major regions which Ibn Battuta visited, from the Maghrib to China. He spares the reader discussions of the confused itineraries, consigning these to the footnotes. He has helpful regional biographies at the end of the book. Some of these could have been fuller: for example, the one for Anatolia fails to list the studies of Taeschner, so useful in elucidating the Akhi institution, for which Ibn Battuta is a primary source.
In the Preface, Dunn insists that his study is not a book about a book. He chracterizes it as part biography and part cultural history, and says that it is addressed to a non- specialist audience. In part, Dunn tries to do for Ibn Battuta what Leonardo Olshki did for Marco Polo in his book Marco Polo's Asia. Dunn's book does not achieve the level of insight and detail that Olshki's did. But it does succeed in what it sets out to do. The book should be assigned in any undergraduate survey course on Islamic civilization or on medieval Eurasia.
One word about the claim (p.1) that Ibn Battuta was the greatest traveler of premodern times. Should not that title go rather to another Muslim traveler, Evliya Chelebi? (Of course, we must agree that the seventeenth century was still premodern -- as it surely was at least with regard to modes of transportation) Possibly Ibn Battuta logged more miles. But if we are judging greatness by the quantity and quality of the travel accounts, the one left by the Turkish traveler far outweighs that of his Moroccan counterpart. Unfortunately, textual studies and translations of the former are still at a primitive level, and it will be some time before anyone will be able to write about Evliya's adventures in as comprehensive a fashion as Dunn has written about Ibn Battuta.
University of Chicago
Thomas T. Allsen, Mongol Imperialism. The Policies of the Grand Qan Mongke in China, Russia and the Islamic Lands 1251-1259 (University of California Press, Berkeley, 1987).
In the course of the last two decades, there has been, relatively speaking, a quiet explosion in studies in the history, structure, political, social and economic organization of the nomadic societies of Medieval Eurasia. Long treated as the stepchild of Chinese, Middle Eastern-Islamic or Russian studies in the United States, this field, notwithstanding the remarkable works of its pioneers, is only now showing signs of coming into its own. For understandable reasons, having largely to do with the availability of sources, these studies have tended to focus on the major empires created by the nomadic peoples, especially those of the Huns, Khazars and Mongols. Of them, the Mongol Empire was the largest and not unexpectedly, having conquered sedentary societies with old and well-developed traditions of historical writing (e.g. China, Iran, Armenia, Georgia and Rus'), the best documented in our sources. While other studies have, perforce, been heavily philological and sought to reconstruct, on the shaky footing of an imperfect source base the broad outlines of their origins or history, Mongol imperial studies have advanced considerably beyond that. Thomas Allsen's Mongol Imperialism is an outstanding example of the new, more mature history of the medieval Eurasian nomadic world. It asks important historical questions.
Allsen, making use of the Chinese, Arabic, Persian and Russian sources in the original and Latin, Syriac, Armenian, Georgian and Mongol sources in translation for his study, is equally at home in all parts of the Mongol world-realm. This is no small achievement. The primary focus of his work centers on the question (p.5) of how the Mongols, a not particularly large confederation (perhaps numbering 700,000) of nomadic pasturalists and hunting-gathering forest tribes who had long been on the fringes of the major nomadic empires of Inner Asia, with limited resources could acquire the needed manpower and materiel to conquer and retain a trans-continental empire? Allsen (see Chapter 7 in particular) shows that the Mongols possessed military superiority not in numbers (at least initially) nor technology, but in training and leadership. The Mongols were exceptionally well-schooled and disciplined soldiers. They were able to increase rapidly the number of military men under their control (both nomadic and sedentary) by co-opting and conscripting the subject populations. This followed the well- known paradigm for nomadic confederation- and statebuilding. Superstratification, a term first used by Jozsef Deer (Pogany magyarsag, kereszteny magyarsag, Budapest, 1938, pp.1O16) to describe this process, is certainly one of the keys to Mongol success. But, they went further. Previous nomadic statebuilders conquered the other nomads and some sedentary elements (often making extensive use of the latter, cf. the Soghdian-T rk relationship), but never on the scale of the Mongol achievement. The Mongols, moreover, who would also fall prey to the same internecine, dynastic strife that afflicted earlier nomadic states as well as the lure of the subject sedentary high cultures, in their drive for domination, proved to be remarkably adept at exploiting their victories organizationally. Each success provided further fuel for the next. Allsen maintains that the Mongols succeeded in creating the largest contiguous landbased empire in human history because they were able to mobilize effectively the human and material resources of the areas under their control (p.7). To see this clearly, we must view Mongol policies from a pan-imperial perspective, which is what Allsen's book does.
After defining, in the introductory chapter, the nature of the problem, the sources and methodology, Allsen devotes chapter 2 to the politics of M ngke's accession to and maintenance in power. Chapters 3 and 4 analyze the structure and workings of the centralized government headed by M ngke. The intricacies of Chinggisid dynastic politics are fully elucidated. At the same time, Allsen shows that Barthold's thesis that Batu was the kingmaker who not only brought M ngke to power but, in effect, shared power with him cannot be sustained. Rather, M ngke and the Toluids had military superiority over the Jochids who owed whatever special status they did enjoy to M ngke's assistance in the subjugation of Western Eurasia. Batu was only a respected and valuable ally. M ngke's authority in foreign affairs was absolute and his role in domestic matters predominant. (pp.56-63).
In organizing his empire, M ngke was not so much an innovator as a prudent and selective reformer who pragmatically built on what had worked in the conquered areas. Although making use of all the available, polyethnic talent of his realm, M ngke was always careful to staff the more important pan-imperial posts with Mongols who often came from his personal guard (the keshig). These were long-time servitors of M ngke and his family whose presence in key posts gave Mongol government a pronounced patrimonial flavor (p.lOO). Within the imperial government there were multiple chains of command and considerable sharing of responsibility (p.112). To this a judicious mix of ethnic rivals added a further level of checks and balances. Chapters 5 and 6 discuss the workings of the Mongol census and tax systems, which are, of course, related. Allsen surveys the available data, which is often confusing as a number of taxes were known by different, local names. The ultimate origins of this system are still obscure. It seems likely that the Mongols, who like most nomadic societies had little or no organized taxation, borrowed from the pre-existing systems of their sedentary subjects or had remarkably creative individuals, such as the Khwarazmian Turk Mahmud Yalavach, who created new forms or imaginatively reworked and applied older ones. Chapter 7, as was noted above, discusses, in some detail, the Mongol military organization and manpower recruitment that won them an empire. In his final chapter, Allsen concludes that M ngke, the last Qaghan of a united Mongol realm, was a great but not unflawed ruler. He failed to provide for a smooth and peaceful transferal of power. This plunged the empire into a throne-struggle that marked the beginning of the state's dissolution. He was, however, able to carry out a program of fiscal and organizational reform while deflecting his conservative opposition with a program of conquest. The reforms enabled the government to marshal the resources needed to fuel this expansion and the expansion produced the new resources which the administration could now efficiently harness to achieve further conquests. It was this system of government that the Chinggisids bequeathed to Central Asia. Allsen's magisterial command of the sources and his clearly articulated and richly documented exploration of the inner workings of this great steppe empire make this book essential reading for those studying the formation of Central Asian Society in medieval and early modern times.
Peter B. Golden
Khubilai Khan, His Life and Times, by Morris Rossabi. xvii+322 pages, list of illustrations, preface, note on transliteration, notes, glossary of Chinese Characters, bibliography of Words in Western Languages, bibliography of Works in Oriental languages, index. University of California Press, Berkeley, 1988. $25.00.
Study of the history of Mongol China has long, of westerners in particular, been an extremely onerous task not the least due to an almost complete lack of the subject and period monographs which, for other areas of Chinese history, provide initial guidance at least in always difficult waters. Recently, however, this has begun to change for the better and now a major gap in our knowledge has been filled with the appearance of an important, well-researched, clearly-written biography of Khubilai khan (1215-1294), in many ways most successful and most influential of all the Mongol rulers, and his times, by Morris Rossabi.
Rossabi's book is a topical examination of the maior periods of Khubilai's life based upon thorough synthesis of available Western, Chinese and Japanese secondary scholarship, supplemented by new primary source research where necessary. The biography is in eight chapters, with copious notes and bibliography. In chapter 1, Rossabi brings into focus Kubilai's credentials as a Mongol and the world into which he was born, and in which he grew up. Chapter 2 handles with great skill the critical period of Khubilai's life when he served as his brother's (qan M ngke) viceroy in China, and nearly became a victim of the great purge unleashed by the new qan against all real and perceived enemies. Chapter 3 turns to the key struggle of Khubilai with his brother Arigh B ke, a claimant to succession as great khan with credentials better than Khubilai's, the potentially dangerous rebellion of Shan-tung warlord Li T'an, and the initial institutional reworking of Mongol China to suit new conditions (government of an isolated regime separate from the rest of the Mongolian world order) by Khubilai and his advisors. Chapter 4 narrates the high point of Khubilai's life, the conquest of the south, his greatest contribution to Chinese history, but also begins the tale of unsuccessful foreign invasions and never-ending Central Asian troubles with Khaidu and others. In chapters 5 and 6 Khubilai appears as emperor and law-giver in full control of his powers, and as an important cultural patron in interesting times. The last chapter, chapter 7, deals with the great monarch's decline and foreign policy mistakes, principally the second invasion of Japan and attempts to acquire extensive domains in mainland and insular southeast Asia. Although each chapter stands by itself and covers a different period or aspect of Khubilai's age, Rossabi skilfully forges links between them by his considerations of the khan himself, as a personality, the lives of those around him, and certain common themes developed throughout the book.
Each topical discussion provides much more than a chronology of events of bare bones discussion of some complex subject. In each case, even in those in which much more research is obviously needed before definite statements can be written (e.g. Khubilai and Buddhism, the Mongois and Yuan culture etc.), Rossabi makes an effort to provide a synthesis of what has been written to date, as well as his own views on the subject. His book will become, as a consequence, not only a guidebook for those carrying on where Rossabi has left off, but a general introduction to Y an dynasty history, something urgently needed but lacking prior to the publication of the Rossabi biography.
Rossabi's book thus has many strengths and much merit and will certainly become a classic in the field. Its principal weaknesses lie, in this reviewer's eyes, in two areas. One is Rossabi's failure to take a broad enough view of the Mongolness of Khubilai and of his dynasty. Although Rossabi makes, I believe, more effort than anyone else in Y an studies to avoid looking at the Mongols, and their state in China, too much through the rose-colored glasses of the Confucian historian, I still find his Khubilai too much a Chinese sage emperor, and too little a Mongol potentate (which even Prof. Rossabi claims he was and remained--pg.23). The problem, in my view, has arisen due to Rossabi's repeated failure to consider the Mongolian side to certain key events in Khubilai's life, and to certain key institutions with which Khubilai was associated. Rossabi, for example, presents Khubilai's reforms in his princely apanage and other territories placed under his control in China by qan M ngke largely in Confucian terms as resulting from the sage advice of Chinese advisors, as they are presented in the later Chinese sources. In fact such reforms, as Thomas Allsen has demonstrated in his Mongolian Imperialism (U.C. Press, 1987), were going on throughout the Mongolian world, in a highly uniform manner (Khubilai, by the way, held exactLy the same position in China that his brother H leg did in Khorasan-Iran). Later, moreover, when Rossabi comes to discuss the institutions created by Khubilai for his new Y an Dynasty, he seems to regard them as more or less (except for the darughachi) a new creation, and completely Chinese. In fact, nothing could be further from the case and later Y an institutions included substantial Mongolian elements (the imperial bodyguard system, the apanage system, the province system, even the organization of the Chung-shu Sheng, to give but a few examples), some of which were not only continued by later Mongol rulers in China, but were even taken over by the Ming. Rossabi also is incorrect in my view in the small space he devotes to Khubilai's relations with the allied Il-khans in Iran (--Rossabi hardly mentions them but both sides pursued them with great interest since through them a fiction of Mongol unity was maintained--), and his failure to discuss the great symbolical importance of the old homeland and the capital, the city of Kara Kurum. This city, and not Shang- tu or Tai-tu, as Ch. Dalai points out (Mongoliya v XIII-XIV vekakh, Moscow, 1983), remained the official capital of the Mongolian world empire into the 14th century, even though the supposed great khans had taken up residence in China. Many more examples could be provided.
Other problems of the book are more minor. In several places Rossabi may have credited Khubilai with the creation of institutions actually created by others (--this is someting often done in Chinese traditional histories to buoy up the sagely qualifications of an emperor). On page 121, for example, a new system is described whereby revenues from apanages would be entirely turned over to central government agents (and not to grasping apanage holders), who would then divide them up between central government and apanage holders, and redistribute the shares of income to the interested parties. If I am not mistaken, this change had already been accomplished under qan g dei at the suggestion of Yeh-l Ch'u-ts'ai. Khubilai may have been doing little more than confirming already established practice. The same must also be true for the she (pg.120) ordered organized by Khubilai. The new system seems identical to that already existing under the Sung. Extending the system to north, as well as south, would of course have been a change and perhaps this is what Rossabi means.
There are minor problems of transliteration: Sub tei is a spelling contrary to Mongolian vowel harmony and would not be correct even if the u were umlauted. The General's name in Middle Mongolian is Sube'edei-ba'adur. It would also be correct to write it S bedei, with a long mark over the second syllable. Batur is another form which is neither here nor there. Is the name from Mongolian ba-atur (M. Mong. ba'adur) or is it the Turkic form of the same name, which should be properly be written badur. Also, I think the preferred reading of the Chinese name of Khubilai's winter capital is Tai-tu (Daidu), not Ta-tu. Better yet would be Khanbalikh.
In conclusion: Prof. Rossabi has written an excellent, readable book marred, in my view, by only one serious problem, Rossabi's attitude towards the Mongolness of Khubilai, his times, and his regimes. However, read with this limitation in mind, the book is to be highly recommended not ony to Sinologists, and historians of the Mongol world, but also to any outside these fields desiring a general introduction to Mongol China. This the book provides amply.
Paul D. Buell
Center for East Asian Studies, Western Washington University
Bellingham, Washington, 98225
Edward Allworth (Ed.), Tatars of the Crimea: Their Struggle for Survival (Central Asia Book Series). Durham and London: Duke University Press, 1988. xii+396 pp. $52.50.
There are individual heroes and collective heroes in this analysis of ethnic consciousness among the Tatars and case study of their fate after their expulsion from the Crimea in 1944. The authors clearly admire the tenacity with which the Tatars, far from their traditional centers of culture, have preserved their sense of community, and they seek to account for its remarkable cohesiveness. They describe the hardships of the Tatars' exile and their campaign to regain lost civil and political rights as a legally recognized ethnic community, and they place all these events in a proper historical context. Description and analysis are reinforced by contemporary sources such as the writings of leading Tatar cultural figures of the past and recent samizdat publications, all of which are published here for the first time in English.
Two figures stand out as representative of Tatar cultural and political aspirations at crucial periods in their history. Both asserted the claims of their people to an identity of their own and to an existence as a distinct cultural and political community. Alan Fisher discusses the goals of Ismail Gaspirali, the founder of the influential newspaper, Terj man, in 1883, particularly his ideas about the importance of a common literary language for the Turkic people of Russia and the need for educational reform. Fisher also suggests interesting parallels between Gaspirali and his Tajik contemporary, Ahmad Donish, who looked to Russia as an intermediary between Central Asia and Europe, a connection both thought was essential if Muslim society was to be reinvigorated. Edward Lazzerini develops this theme further. He points out that Gaspirali wanted not only Russian approval but also sustained support of his program and shows how he tried to persuade the Russians (and his Muslim critics) that drawing closer to Russia did not mean Russification, which, he was certain, could only have the opposite effect of driving them further apart.
The figure who embodies contemporary Tatar aspirations most dramatically is Mustafa Jemilev. Like Gaspirali earlier, he is both the ideologist and the inspirational leader of the Tatars. Ludmilla Alexeyeva calls him a national hero, a title he has earned through his persistence in the face of unrelenting police- state persecution. Extensive excerpts from samizdat materials, including his dignified and reasoned testimony at his trials in 1970 and later on charges of slandering the Soviet state and social system, establish him as one of the major human rights activists in the Soviet Union.
Not only strong individuals but also whole communities pressed the case for Tatar rights. Several authors examine underlying social and cultural traditions to explain Tatar cohesiveness in adversity. Seyit Ahmet Kirimca shows how the Tatar national anthem and the works of three poets provided the symbols essential for survival: Riza G l m points to the importance of dance, the theater, and folk poems in endowing the community with a sense of ethnic identity and continuity; and M. Batu Altan emphasizes the crucial role of the family in preserving an awareness of ethnic identity for two generations of children at a time when the regime discouraged the teaching of Tatar history and culture in institutions. The moving recollections of Ayshe Seytmuratova, a girl of seven when she was deported to Uzbekistan, are eloquent testimony to the strength of family and community associations. She tells in direct, spare language of her efforts to obtain an education and a teaching position for herself without renouncing her Tatar heritage and of her perseverance in seeking justice for her people.
The scholarly articles, the memoirs, and the samizdat documents constitute a powerful case study of Soviet nationality policy. As Edward Allworth points out in his analysis of the ambiguities and dilemmas of that policy, even as late as 1986 the Communist Party continued to display its hostility to the slightest act of self-determination when it declared its intention to combat vigorously all expressions of localism. The cause of the Tatars, which encompasses a century, is at the same time a case study of modern nationalism. The materials assembled here add substantially to our understanding of the phenomenon.
University of Illinois, Urbana
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