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Sons of the Conquerors: The Rise of the Turkic World [Paperback]

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Item Specifications...

Pages   413
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 1" Width: 6" Height: 9"
Weight:   0.95 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Oct 31, 2006
Publisher   Overlook TP
ISBN  158567804X  
EAN  9781585678044  

Availability  0 units.

Item Description...
In his major new work, Wall Street Journal Istanbul correspondant Hugh Pope provides a vivid picture of the Turkic people, descendants of the nomadic armies that conquered the Byzantine Empire and reigned over the region for centures. Today the Turks encompass a region much larger than the political boundaries of the nation of Turkey - from the Xinjiang province of western China, to Iran, Iraq, the Netherlands, Germany, all the way to the Appalacian Mountains of the United States. One of the world's foremost experts on modern Turkey - its languages, people, and history - and acclaimed co-author of Turkey Unveiled (a New York Times Notable Book), Hugh Pope has traveled the world to encounter and assimilate the many facets of this extraordinarily complex and fascinating ethnic group, distilling the essentail qualities shared by all people of Turkish descent. Rich with stories and legends stretching back centuries, Sons of the Conquerors is a compellingly readable account of a profoundly neglected subject.

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More About Hugh Pope

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Hugh Pope read Persian and Arabic at Oxford, and has reported for the Independent, Los Angeles Times, BBC, and Reuters. He currently runs the news bureau in Istanbul for the Wall Street Journal.

Hugh Pope currently resides in Istanbul.

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Product Categories
1Books > Subjects > History > Asia > Turkey   [573  similar products]
2Books > Subjects > History > Europe > General   [4742  similar products]
3Books > Subjects > History > Middle East > General   [1334  similar products]
4Books > Subjects > History > World > General   [99905  similar products]
5Books > Subjects > Nonfiction > Social Sciences > Special Groups > Ethnic Studies   [2158  similar products]

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Reviews - What do our customers think?
superb work on Turkey and Turkic world  Jul 23, 2008
A surprizingly large expanse of territory across the globe is inhabited by Turkish and Turkic peoples. Pope's fascinating and comprehensive work is among the most important books, and best written on the subject whether providing the reader with a significantg understanding of the importance of the Army on Turkish politics, insights on Turkish history presence in the Balkans or focusing more general on Turkish history and its major figures.
However, the history, politics, economy and social worlds of Turkey is only part of the story of the Turkic people. Pope describes their diverse life worlds and politics on the Steppe of Cental Asia and also as against competitors in this vast area such as the Russians and the Chinese and also with important emphasis on the rush for oil. This is a very bold and extremely well written saga of the Turkic world in the context of the wider world system. A fabulous read, don't miss it.
A Journalist's Diary in the Turkic World  Mar 17, 2008
Hugh Pope presents a good understanding of Turkish culture having lived in Turkey and been able to speak in Turkish. I have long been thinking about why somebody has not made a documentary at this level about new Turkic states and Turkic world in general so that the world can see how those countries culturally are and how they are being run. Reading Hugh Pope's book you get a chance to visualize through his vivid explanations and stories. His starting point is Istanbul, Turkey. He then takes on his journey to Turkic states. It was also comprehensive enough to include Turkic people spread out throughout the world including Europe, Mid-east, China (The Uygur Turks) and USA.

Nicely written book from a journalist/traveller's point of view. Highly recommended to those who are interested in Turkic people, current Turkic states, their regimes, struggles, opportunities and also recommended to people of modern Turkey.
For Those Who Know Nothing About the Turkic World  Oct 5, 2007
Hugh Pope's "Sons of the Conquerors" is a good book for those who know nothing about the Turkic world and who are interested to learn more. Appearing heavy at just short of 400 pages, this is not heavy academics. Pope writes as a journalist, keeping the reading light and the chapters short. This is a book that can be read on the subway or on a lunch break.

The subjects are fascinating: The Turks of modern Turkey, four of the five "Stans" (Tajiks excluded, as they are closer to Persians), and a few lesser-known Turkic peoples like the Uyghurs of China and the Karakalpaks of western Uzbekistan. Mr. Pope is a journalist and not a historian, so the book is collection of personal observations and experiences (some less memorable than others) taken over a period of ten-odd years, from the last years of the USSR to the first years of the post 9-11 world. Educators might use the book as a companion to more academic work or as further reading.

The biggest flaw, or flaws, of the book is the editing. Misspelled words, awkward sentences missing words, and a few mistakes (the Appalachians are in the eastern U.S., not the west) make for a poor showing on the editor's part. These frequent errors give the work an impression it was rushed to print; in this age of Wikipedia and Spellcheck such petty mistakes are really quite inexcusable.

Nevertheless "Sons of the Conquerors" was an enjoyable and fascinating read.
Good observation by Pope  May 13, 2007
I recommend this book to all people living in Turkey and other Turkic states. May be we can realize where we are, why we are back. This book must be translated to Turkish and other languages of other Turkic states as soon as possible so that it can reach more and more. Hugh Pope criticizes us better than us. He understands better what is going on since he looks at the events from outside. I look forward to his new book.
Well-written, but missing that final zing  Nov 19, 2006
Hugh Pope's "Sons of the Conquerors" is an interesting read - particularly for those interested in the Turkic world or those interested in literature about far-flung places (how many people do you know who've been to Xinjiang, for example?). "The Turkic World", for those who are unfamiliar with the term, is the part of the world inhabited by Turkic peoples - a belt stretching roughly from western China to the Balkans and including, as well as the Turks of Turkey, the Azeris, Kazakhs, Turkmens and Uighurs among others.

Pope, a journalist based in Istanbul, professes at the outset to have had little knowledge of the broader Turkic world until being told to cover a demonstration by Uighurs in China. As the Soviet Union collapsed, however, he found himself well-placed to investigate some of the newly-independent states of Central Asia, most of which are Turkic-majority.
What follows, then, is a series of travelogue-style pieces as Pope traverses this under-analysed part of the world. He wanders through bazaars in western China, meets with the President of Kazakhstan, crosses the Caspian Sea, interviews refugees from Nagorno-Karabakh and even gets to talk to some Bulgarian Turks thinking about returning to the motherland.

Entertaining and informative as all of this is (English-language books on any aspect of Central Asia still being a developing market), Pope's analyses frequently lack context. His discussions of the Turkmen and Kazakh leaders seem to fall too easily into the standard lines (the former is a dictator, but an amusing one, the latter could do with being more democratic but seems a nice guy). Admittedly, in this part of the world, it doesn't pay to be too critical of one's hosts, particularly not if one intends to return later on for more journalistic coverage, but as a historian of the Turks, I found this wanting a bit.
Equally concerning were Pope's frequent plunges into the local languages. While his puzzling rendering of "Xankandi" in Azerbaijan as "Hankenty" is perhaps excusable due to the orthographical reforms taking place at the time, there is a description of a Turkmen contact's language as evoking the dustiness and furtiveness of Turkmen historical existence which is patently ridiculous. While this is the only occasion on which Pope makes such comments openly, one wonders idly how many times such essentialist thinking influenced his views of the situation.
As a third consideration, Pope gives undue weight to some groups of Turks while giving others short shrift. His "appalachian Turks" make for a romantic story, but could easily have been dispensed with in light of anthropological consensus on the topic. Groups such as the Christian Gagauz of Moldova, the Crimean Tatars of Ukraine and the myriad Turkic groups of the Russian Federation (including the Buddhist Buryats) hardly even get a mention, which feels like an oversight. Even the relatively well-known polyphonic throat singers of Tuva only get a paragraph or two.

This is not to say that Pope's work is substandard. For the lay reader, this is very possibly a better book than I am making it out to be. Be aware, however, that the specialist - or indeed the non-specialist who finds this sort of thing interesting - is going to want a lot more than what is written up here.

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