Through both ethnographic and historical analysis the sacred routes of uyghur history offers a new understanding of uyghur historical practices detailing the remarkable means by which this people reckons with its past and confronts its nationalist aspirations in the present day. The sacred routes of uyghur history explores the complex relationship between history production social practice and space and traces the transformation of specific historical genres in response to changing political contexts and the increasing role of the state by examining the development of manuscript culture and technology it provides . The sacred routes of uyghur history is not a direct narrative but a detailed historical analysis of the making of the uyghur people across time thum approaches xinjiang or altishahr through the sources and products of uyghur historical practice shrines tazkirah saint story manuscripts pilgrimages festivals newspapers and so on. Partly insulated from the rest of the islamic world the uyghurs constructed a local history that is at once unique and assimilates elements of semitic iranic turkic and indic traditions the cultural imports of silk road travelers through both ethnographic and historical analysis the sacred routes of uyghur history. Rian thum the sacred routes of uyghur history harvard university press 2014 336 pp h istorical scholarship on the uyghurs often focuses on the imperial ambitions of the states that surrounded chinese central asia and in turn the political intrigue that surrounded the emissaries of those states
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