All posts by James Pickett

James Pickett is Assistant Professor in the History Department of the University of Pittsburgh. He is currently completing a study of Islamic scholars in Central Asia during the nineteenth century, and is beginning an investigation of semi- colonialism and cultures of documentation in the Islamic world.

Connections Across Time and Space: Alfrid Bustanov’s Documentary "The Legacy of Siberian Muslims"

The documentary embedded below (also viewable at this link) is the product of careful ethnographic research almost seven years in the making.  For Alfrid Bustanov, who received his doctorate from the University of Amsterdam just months ago, following these Siberian families is a labor of love.  Continue reading Connections Across Time and Space: Alfrid Bustanov’s Documentary "The Legacy of Siberian Muslims"

Two Millennia in Four Months: Scott Levi on Taming the Central Asian History Survey Course

One of my aims here on Bactriana is to fuel a dialogue not only about Central Asian historical scholarship, but teaching as well. I reached out to Scott Levi at the Ohio State University for an initial foray into this topic because his research has endeavored to place Central Asia within the broader dialogue of world history. Infusing intimidating proper nouns like “Qarakitai” and “Maturidi” with thematic historical significance in an introductory survey course is no simple task, but one for which Levi is especially well-suited.
Continue reading Two Millennia in Four Months: Scott Levi on Taming the Central Asian History Survey Course

"Developed Socialism" in the Periphery: Artemy Kalinovsky’s new research on Tajikistan during the Cold War period

Artemy M. Kalinovsky, Assistant Professor of East European Studies at the University of Amsterdam and author of A Long Goodbye: The Soviet Withdrawal from Afghanistan, was kind enough to chat with me regarding his new research about Soviet Tajikistan and experiences working in the archives.  Continue reading "Developed Socialism" in the Periphery: Artemy Kalinovsky’s new research on Tajikistan during the Cold War period