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234 × 156 mm
784 pages
105 illustrations
12 Nov 2018
  • £30.00

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Afghanistan A History from 1260 to the Present Day Jonathan L. Lee

Located at the intersection of Asia and the Middle East, Afghanistan has been strategically important for thousands of years. Its ancient trade routes and strategic position between India, Inner Asia, China, Persia and beyond has meant the region has been subject to frequent invasions. Modern Afghanistan is a culturally and ethnically diverse country, but one divided by conflict, political instability and by mass displacements of its people.

Jonathan L. Lee places the current conflict in Afghanistan in its historical context and challenges many of the West’s preconceived ideas about the country. Lee chronicles the region’s monarchic rules and the Durrani dynasty, focusing on the reigns of each ruler and their efforts to balance tribal, ethnic, regional and religious factions, moving on to the struggle for social and constitutional reform and the rise of Islamic and Communist factions. He offers new cultural and political insights from Persian histories, the memoirs of Afghan government officials, British government and India Office archives, recently released CIA reports and WikiLeaks documents. Lee also sheds new light on the country’s foreign relations, its internal power struggles and the impact of foreign military interventions such as the ‘War on Terror’.

‘This work is the last word on the history of Afghanistan and I have no hesitation in recommending it.’ – Dr Chris Wyatt, University of Birmingham, author of Afghanistan in the Defence of Empire

‘Lee’s book combines nuanced attention to the dynamic variety of regional, religious and tribal identities, loyalties, alliances and resources within Afghanistan, while also constructively engaging with the diverse and changing constellation of external actors, agencies and pressures in this new history of Afghanistan.’ – Shah Mahmoud Hanifi, Professor of Middle Eastern and South Asian History at James Madison University

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Jonathan l. Lee is a social and cultural historian and a leading authority on the history of Afghanistan. His previous books include The ‘Ancient Supremacy’, Bukhara, Afghanistan and the Battle for Balkh, 1732–1901 (1996) and Amazing Wonders of Afghanistan (2014).