“Romanticizing Afghanistan, Iran and Pakistan: A Region through the Lens of Resistive Economy” by Dr. Muhammad Asim offers an extensive exploration of the cultural dynamics and historical influences shaping the three countries. As I note significantly, the book also highlights the fusion of Persian and Turkic elements within the region and emphasizes the profound impact of Mughlai cuisine and Persianate architectural styles. It also delves into the Persian melodic influence on music, particularly in Pakistan and Afghanistan.
As an Uzbek scholar, I appreciate the comprehensive analysis of cultural hybridity and the acknowledgment of Uzbekistan’s inclusion in Persianate society. However, it is disappointing that Uzbekistan is not given due attention and exploration in the book. Considering its historical and cultural ties to the Persianate world, Uzbekistan deserves to be recognized as an integral part of the region being discussed. The addition of Uzbekistan’s perspective would further enrich the narrative and provide a more comprehensive understanding of the interconnectedness of these countries.
Regarding the book’s title, I would suggest expanding it to “Romanticizing Afghanistan, Iran, Pakistan, and Uzbekistan: Exploring the Persianate Society and Cultural Hybridity.” This revised title accurately reflects the book’s content and ensures the inclusion of Uzbekistan as an essential component of Persianate society. It also highlights the focus on cultural hybridity, which is a recurring theme throughout the text.
However, in general, let me tell the scholars of politics and cultural studies that the book “Romanticizing Afghanistan, Iran and Pakistan: A Region through the Lens of Resistive Economy” provides valuable insights into the rich cultural heritage of the region. By incorporating the perspectives and experiences of Uzbekistan, the book would offer a more comprehensive understanding of the Persianate society and its intricate dynamics.
Ziyoda Nasar (Muynak, Uzbekistan)