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The Persians: Ancient, Mediaeval and Modern Iran Paperback – November 30, 2010
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Top Customer Reviews
If you are an Iranian, then you owe it to yourself to read this book. If you have adult children, please encourage them to read it. If you have young children, save this book in a safe place, and let them read it when they grow up.
Finally, if you are interested in modern Iran, his two books about Musaddiq and the Emergence of the Pahlavis are unsurpassed for their quality of research and writing. You can find these and his other works on Amazon.
So, there's nothing new under the sun today, but it's been a long time developing.
For the period of the last 125 years or so, most likely to interest Americans, this is a good overview. But, before that, the past gets skimmed at many times.
There's little on the glories of the Achaemenids. Nor is there anything beyond the superficial on the founding and development of Zoroastrianism. The one thing new I learned about Iran's religious is that apparently it was NOT Shi'a majority until forcible conversion in a dynasty of the 1600s.
There's some other things missing, speaking of that.
1. A good glossary of religious terms.
2. A two-paged, nicely sized map of the country, or more than one. A geological map would be nice as part of this. So would better mapping of ancient and modern political division.
3. More discussions of Iranians' relations with Turks, over nearly 1,000 years of Turkish slaves passing through on the way to forming various dynasties, plus the Turkic presence fronting different Iranian empires in Transoxania. It's clear that Iran has many Turkish, as well as Arabic, loan words.
Anyway, I don't have further comparison because this is the first in-depth history of Iran I've read.
This book is the best summary-type Iranian history book of the past 2,500 to 3,000 years that I have seen and read. I recommend this book to everyone, specially all Iranian-Americans, and to their families-- the best book to familiarize young generation with Iranian history. I also highly recommend the Farsi version (translation)-- all unfamiliar Farsi and Arabic names (in English language) can be easily read and understood in Farsi Translation. Otherwise, readers who do not have Farsi language background, would have problems to follow-up the history in the English version, alone.
This book is the best Iranian summary-type history book that (I believe) has been researched and prepared by a very qualified person, and printed, over the past 100 years. I also believe that the funding for such a First Class work must have come from U.S. government-- perhaps from the U.S. National Security apparatus.
Thank you, Professor Katouzian.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
It gives an outsider a good look. Find it logical, easy to understand the flow of Iranian history. Recommend to demanding readers who are familiar with history books (may be not... Read morePublished 6 days ago by Janis
This is an enjoyable read that offers good coverage and balanced observations. Highly recommended.Published 10 months ago by Augustine Lovejoy
I struggled to read this book straight through. It definitely has all of the history there, but is a rather dry history. Read morePublished on January 12, 2013 by Susan J Rahily
I have the book, It's awesome, There are many maps, from ancient times to modern times. in all of the it's Persian Gulf not just the Gulf. Read morePublished on June 29, 2012 by hunter1
I was born and raised in Iran and I can tell you that reading this book will give you a glimpse of what I experienced in my life.Published on December 6, 2011 by S. J. K. Amirkolaie
Readers familiar with the geography of Iran wil be disappointed that a full page map of Iran erroneously designates the Persian Gulf as simply "The Gulf". Read morePublished on February 4, 2010 by F. Iman