Afghanistan: A Companion and Guide

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Odyssey Books & Guides, 2011 - Travel - 784 pages
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Thanks to 20 years of civil war and its association with terrorism, Afghanistan is now unjustly thought of in the West as a barbarous backwater. Afghanistan: A Companion and Guide aims to dispel this image in a comprehensive introduction to 3,500 years of Afghan culture. Starting with a full history of the country from 1500 BC, each chapter looks at the major cities and regions, describing their distinctive cultural and ethnic traditions, their associations with poets, artists, musicians, travelers and holy men, as well as warriors and conquerors. A number of specialist essays by leading experts further present topics such as archaeology, architecture, carpets, miniature painting, music, flora and fauna. Wonderfully illustrated with superb images from world-renowned photographers, this book also features engravings, paintings and images of priceless museum artifacts. Ancient and modern sources from Afghanistan are extensively quoted, as well as the thoughts, musings and experiences of writers from America, Europe, Russia, China, India and the Middle East, including such luminaries as Robert Byron and Bruce Chatwin.

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About the author (2011)

Bijan Omrani attended Lincoln College, Oxford. His first book, Ticking Tom and the Tornado, was published when he was 10 years old, which he followed with contributions to The Spectator as an undergraduate. His research interests include Euripides, mysticism, Henry Purcell and the history of the Afghan-Pakistan frontier. He is the author and editor of various works on Central Asia including Asia Overland: Tales of Travel on the Trans-Siberian and Silk Road (Odyssey Books & Guides), and also a Fellow of the Royal Asiatic Society and the Royal Geographical Society. He teaches Classics at Westminster School.

Matthew Leeming was educated at Trinity College, Oxford. He has written onAfghanistan for the Times (London), Sunday Telegraph, Spectator, and the LiteraryReview. He is based near Winchester in southern England and travels often toKabul.

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