252 Literatur/Book Reviews / Die Welt des Islams 51 (2011) 248-275 Research Trends in Modern Central Eurasian Studies (18 th -20 th Centuries). A Selective and Critical Bibliography of Works Published between 1985 and 2000, Part 2 . By Stephane Dudoignon & Hisao Komatsu. Tokyo: e Toyo Bunko, 2006. 397 pp., ISBN 4-8097- 0202-2. Following a ﬁrst part published in 2003 introducing research trends in various ﬁelds of Central Eurasian studies, this second, thick volume submits an exceptionally wide range—about 1500—of abstracts of recent publications. A large number of these reviews have been previously published in the yearly bibliographical survey Abstracta Iranica (mostly in French). Yet the present set incorporates numerous new ones and some new versions of former ones; all the abstracts are now in English; the number of reviewers increased signiﬁcantly and counts a sixty scholars from various disciplines. If the period covered is limited to the modern times, the geographical scope is fairly large, including Caucasus, Siberia and Xinjiang. Moreover, the topic matters have broadened extensively: epistemology; geography; history; sciences and techniques; religious studies; languages and literatures; anthropology and sociology; economy and political science. Not surprisingly, history is by far the largest category with 117 pages in total. Aside from this valuable encyclopaedic eﬀort, the present collection proves to be a unique handbook of rare , sometimes unknown, publications. See in particular the Tajik, Tatar and Uyghur references. To be noticed too is the Japanese contribution in terms of not only editing, but collecting and abstracting actively. However, one would expect more reviews of Japanese publications (for a list, see Shinmen Yasushi, “Re search in Japan on Islamic Central Asian History: 1984-1991”, Asian Research Trends: A Humanities and Social Sciences Review 3, Tokyo: e Centre for East Asian Cultural Studies for Unesco, 1993, pp. 43-66). Needless to say, this kind of work would not have been possible before the late 1980’s, when Central Asia (former Soviet republics as well as Xinjiang, under Deng Xiaoping’s reform process) became again accessible to foreign researchers. Its neces- sarily collective nature coincides also, naturally, with recent broader phenomena in research in humanities, such as the unprecedented increase of publications or the speeding-up of international digital communication. From these perspectives, such a book represents a turning point in the course of Central Eurasian studies: First of all, it marginalizes permanently sovietology, or more precisely, Russian as the only source or working language. From now on, it seems no longer possible to lead research on Central Asia without knowing also Persian and/or Turkic languages. Secondly, it renders partly obsolete former attempts of bibliographical surveying, epitomized by Denis Sinor’s Introduction à l’étude de l’Eurasie centrale (Wiesbaden: Otto Harras sowitz 1963) then Yuri Bregel’s Bibliography of Islamic Central Asia (Part I-II-III, Blooming- ton: Indiana University-Research Institute of Inner Asian Studies 1995), despite the undeniable importance of these two monumental works. Lastly, Research Trends in Modern Central Eurasian Studies looks likely to be in turn outmatched by future publications able to cover, for instance, the medieval period; and associating more reviewers. Alexandre Papas Paris © Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, 2011 DOI: 10.1163/157006008X313817
Die Welt des Islams – Brill
Published: Jan 1, 2011
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