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Asian history

See below for a selection of the latest books from Asian history category. Presented with a red border are the Asian history books that have been lovingly read and reviewed by the experts at Lovereading. With expert reading recommendations made by people with a passion for books and some unique features Lovereading will help you find great Asian history books and those from many more genres to read that will keep you inspired and entertained. And it's all free!

History of the Caucasus

History of the Caucasus

Author: Christoph (Independent Scholar) Baumer Format: Hardback Release Date: 26/08/2021

A landscape of high mountains and narrow valleys stretching from the Black to the Caspian Seas, the Caucasus region has been home to human populations for nearly 2 million years. In this richly illustrated 2-volume series, historian and explorer Christoph Baumer tells the story of the region's history through to the present day. It is a story of encounters between many different peoples, from Scythians, Turkic and Mongol peoples of the East to Greeks and Romans from the West, from Indo-European tribes from the West as well as the East, and to Arabs and Iranians from the South. It is a story of rival claims by Empires and nations and of how the region has become home to more than 50 languages that can be heard within its borders to this very day. This first volume charts the period from the emergence of the earliest human populations in the region - the first known human populations outside Africa - to the Seljuk conquests of 1050AD. Along the way the book charts the development of Neolithic, Iron and Bronze Age cultures, the first recognizable Caucasian state and the arrival of a succession of the great transnational Empires, from the Greeks, the Romans and the Armenian to competing Christian and Muslim conquerors. The History of the Caucasus: Volume 1 also includes more than 200 full colour images and maps bringing the changing cultures of these lands vividly to life.

Manchuria

Manchuria

Author: Mark (Tel Aviv University, Israel) Gamsa Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 26/08/2021

Manchuria is a historical region, which roughly corresponds to Northeast China. The Manchu people, who established the last dynasty of Imperial China (the Qing, 1644-1911) originated there, and it has been the stage of turbulent events during the twentieth century: the Russo-Japanese war, Japanese occupation and establishment of the puppet state of Manchukuo, Soviet invasion, and Chinese civil war. This innovative and accessible historical survey both introduces Manchuria to students and general readers and contributes to the emerging regional perspective in the study of China.

Protestant Textuality and the Tamil Modern

Protestant Textuality and the Tamil Modern

Author: Bernard Bate Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 17/08/2021

Throughout history, speech and storytelling have united communities and mobilized movements. Protestant Textuality and the Tamil Modern examines this phenomenon in Tamil-speaking South India over the last three centuries, charting the development of political oratory and its influence on society. Supplementing his narrative with thorough archival work, Bernard Bate begins with Protestant missionaries' introduction of the sermonic genre and takes the reader through its local vernacularization. What originally began as a format of religious speech became an essential political infrastructure used to galvanize support for new social imaginaries, from Indian independence to Tamil nationalism. Completed by a team of Bate's colleagues, this ethnography marries linguistic anthropology to performance studies and political history, illuminating new geographies of belonging in the modern era.

The United States and China

The United States and China

Author: Dong Wang Format: Hardback Release Date: 16/08/2021

Now fully revised and updated, The United States and China offers a comprehensive synthesis of US-Chinese relations from initial contact to the present. Balancing the modern (1784-1949) and contemporary (1949-present) periods, Dong Wang retraces centuries of interaction between two of the world's great powers from the perspective of both sides. She examines state-to-state diplomacy, as well as economic, social, military, religious, and cultural interplay within varying national and international contexts. As China itself continues to grow in global importance, so too does the US-Chinese relationship, and this book provides an essential grounding for understanding its past, present, and possible futures.

The United States and China

The United States and China

Author: Dong Wang Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 16/08/2021

Now fully revised and updated, The United States and China offers a comprehensive synthesis of US-Chinese relations from initial contact to the present. Balancing the modern (1784-1949) and contemporary (1949-present) periods, Dong Wang retraces centuries of interaction between two of the world's great powers from the perspective of both sides. She examines state-to-state diplomacy, as well as economic, social, military, religious, and cultural interplay within varying national and international contexts. As China itself continues to grow in global importance, so too does the US-Chinese relationship, and this book provides an essential grounding for understanding its past, present, and possible futures.

Visions of Development in Central Asia

Visions of Development in Central Asia

Author: Noor O'Neill Borbieva Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 15/08/2021

In Visions of Development in Central Asia: Revitalizing the Culture Concept, Noor O'Neill Borbieva reflects on anthropology's withdrawal from discussions about culture and the parallel rise of the intellectually and politically problematic discourse of culture matters thinking, or CMT. CMT asserts that cultures are homogeneous and that the dominant values of its culture determine a state's socioeconomic and political trajectories. Drawing on practice theory, ecological psychology, complexity science, and poststructuralism, Borbieva urges anthropologists to revisit debates about culture in order to counteract the influence of simplistic formulations such as CMT. Through an examination of ethnographic material from Kyrgyzstan, gathered during the years she worked as a Peace Corps Volunteer and as an anthropologist, Borbieva examines how debates about culture shaped the development sector's agenda in Central Asia. She argues that mainstream discussions of culture not only misunderstand the cultural basis of human diversity but also threaten that diversity by promoting a one-size-fits-all vision of well-being. Borbieva suggests an alternative vision, one that recognizes the profound complexity of human sociality and embraces the many forms of human thriving that grow out of our cultural differences.

Coming Home to a Foreign Country

Coming Home to a Foreign Country

Author: Soon Keong Ong Format: Hardback Release Date: 15/08/2021

Ong Soon Keong explores the unique position of the treaty port Xiamen (Amoy) within the China-Southeast Asia migrant circuit and examines its role in the creation of Chinese diasporas. Coming Home to a Foreign Country addresses how migration affected those who moved out of China and later returned to participate in the city's economic revitalization, educational advancement, and urban reconstruction. Ong shows how the mobility of overseas Chinese allowed them to shape their personal and community identities for pragmatic and political gains. This resulted in migrants who returned with new money, knowledge, and visions acquired abroad, which changed the landscape of their homeland and the lives of those who stayed. Placing late Qing and Republican China in a transnational context, Coming Home to a Foreign Country explores the multilayered social and cultural interactions between China and Southeast Asia. Ong investigates the role of Xiamen in the creation of a China-Southeast Asia migrant circuit; the activities of aspiring and returned migrants in Xiamen; the accumulation and manipulation of multiple identities by Southeast Asian Chinese as political conditions changed; and the motivations behind the return of Southeast Asian Chinese and their continual involvement in mainland Chinese affairs. For Chinese migrants, Ong argues, the idea of home was something consciously constructed. Ong complicates familiar narratives of Chinese history to show how the emigration and return of overseas Chinese helped transform Xiamen from a marginal trading outpost at the edge of the Chinese empire to a modern, prosperous city and one of the most important migration hubs by the 1930s.

Women in the Sky

Women in the Sky

Author: Hwasook Nam Format: Hardback Release Date: 15/08/2021

Women in the Sky examines Korean women factory workers' century-long activism, from the 1920s to the present, with a focus on gender politics both in the labor movement and in the larger society. It highlights several key moments in colonial and postcolonial Korean history when factory women commanded the attention of the wider public, including the early-1930s rubber shoe workers' general strike in Pyongyang, the early-1950s textile workers' struggle in South Korea, the 1970s democratic union movement led by female factory workers, and women workers' activism against neoliberal restructuring in recent decades. Hwasook Nam asks why women workers in South Korea have been relegated to the periphery in activist and mainstream narratives despite a century of persistent militant struggle and indisputable contributions to the labor movement and successful democracy movement. Women in the Sky opens and closes with stories of high-altitude sit-ins-a phenomenon unique to South Korea-beginning with the rubber shoe worker Kang Churyong's sit-in in 1931 and ending with numerous others in today's South Korean labor movement, including that of Kim Jin-Sook. In Women in the Sky, Nam seeks to understand and rectify the vast gap between the crucial roles women industrial workers played in the process of Korea's modernization and their relative invisibility as key players in social and historical narratives. By using gender and class as analytical categories, Nam presents a comprehensive study and rethinking of the twentieth-century nation-building history of Korea through the lens of female industrial worker activism.

Governing the Dead

Governing the Dead

Author: Linh D. Vu Format: Hardback Release Date: 15/08/2021

In Governing the Dead, Linh D. Vu explains how the Chinese Nationalist regime consolidated control by honoring its millions of war dead, allowing China to emerge rapidly from the wreckage of the first half of the twentieth century to become a powerful state, supported by strong nationalistic sentiment and institutional infrastructure. The fall of the empire, internecine conflicts, foreign invasion, and war-related disasters claimed twenty to thirty million Chinese lives. Vu draws on government records, newspapers, and petition letters from mourning families to analyze how the Nationalist regime's commemoration of the dead and compensation of the bereaved actually fortified its central authority. By enshrining the victims of violence as national ancestors, the Republic of China connected citizenship to the idea of the nation, promoting loyalty to the imagined community. The regime constructed China's first public military cemetery and hundreds of martyrs' shrines, collectively mourned millions of fallen soldiers and civilians, and disbursed millions of yuan to tens of thousands of widows and orphans. The regime thus exerted control over the living by creating the state apparatus necessary to manage the dead. Although the Communist forces prevailed in 1949, the Nationalists had already laid the foundation for the modern nation-state through their governance of dead citizens. The Nationalist policies of glorifying and compensating the loyal dead in an age of catastrophic destruction left an important legacy: violence came to be celebrated rather than lamented.

Performing Power

Performing Power

Author: Arnout der Meer Format: Hardback Release Date: 15/08/2021

Performing Power illuminates how colonial dominance in Indonesia was legitimized, maintained, negotiated, and contested through the everyday staging and public performance of power between the colonizer and colonized. Arnout Van der Meer's Performing Power explores what seemingly ordinary interactions reveal about the construction of national, racial, social, religious, and gender identities as well as the experience of modernity in colonial Indonesia. Through acts of everyday resistance, such as speaking a different language, withholding deference, and changing one's appearance and consumer behavior, a new generation of Indonesians contested the hegemonic colonial appropriation of local culture and the racial and gender inequalities that it sustained. Over time these relationships of domination and subordination became inverted, and by the twentieth century the Javanese used the tropes of Dutch colonial behavior to subvert the administrative hierarchy of the state. Thanks to generous funding from the Sustainable History Monograph Pilot and the Mellon Foundation the ebook editions of this book are available as Open Access (OA) volumes from Cornell Open (cornellopen.org) and other Open Access repositories.

Newborn Socialist Things

Newborn Socialist Things

Author: Laurence Coderre Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 06/08/2021

Contemporary China is seen as a place of widespread commodification and consumerism, while the Maoist Cultural Revolution that preceded it is typically understood as a time when goods were scarce and the state criticized what little consumption was possible. Indeed, with the exception of the likeness and words of Mao Zedong, the media and material culture of the Cultural Revolution are often characterized as a void out of which the postsocialist world of commodity consumption miraculously sprang fully formed. In Newborn Socialist Things, Laurence Coderre explores the material culture of the Cultural Revolution to show how it paved the way for commodification in contemporary China. Examining objects ranging from retail counters and porcelain statuettes to textbooks and vanity mirrors, she shows how the project of building socialism in China has always been intimately bound up with consumption. By focusing on these objects-or newborn socialist things -along with the Cultural Revolution's media environment, discourses of materiality, and political economy, Coderre reconfigures understandings of the origins of present-day China.