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Jean-Pierre Digard

Floor, Willem (2003), Agriculture in Qajar Iran (Washington, DC: Mage Publishers). 692 pp.

Scholz, Fred (2002), Nomadism and Colonialism: A Hundred Years of Baluchistan 1872–1972, trans. Hugh Van Skyhawk (Oxford: Oxford University Press). xviii–328 pages, bibliography, figures, index.

Tapper, Richard and McLachlan, Keith (2003) (eds.), Technology, Tradition and Survival: Aspects of Material Culture in the Middle East and Central Asia (London and Portland, OR: Frank Cass) (History and Society in the Islamic World Series). 256 pages, 49 pl. h.-t., illustrations, maps, index. Published with the assistance of the Islamic Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (ISESCO), the British Institute for Persian Studies (BIPS) and the Centre of Near and Middle Eastern Studies (CNMES) at the London School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS).

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Reports

Books, Films and Conferences

Soraya Tremayne

BOOKS

Zyarah, Khaled (1997), Gulf Folk Arts, trans. by K. Bishtawi (Doha: Al-Ahleir Press). 63 Arabic pages and 58 English pages. Every chapter has a black and white picture.

Al Bagdadi, Khaled (2004), Hassan Al Mulla. e Memory of Man and Place (Doha: Doha Modern Printing Press). 184 pages, illustrated in colour. 10 pages of English text, trans. by Samar Al Hussein. Taha, Dr. Munir (2003), Qatar in Prehistoric Times (Doha: Antiquities and Museums Department). 144 pages, 4 maps, 46 pages illustrated heavily in col- our or black and white pictures and drawings.

FILMS

Sheikholeslami, Mahvash (2003), Murderer or Murdered, 26 minutes.

CONFERENCES

‘Gamete and Embryo Donation in Infertility Treatment’, 1–2 March 2006, Tehran, Iran

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Gülcan Kolay

The Turkish Army has been reported many times to use the burning of villages, forest and fields as a strategy in the war against the Kurdish insurgents. However, the army not only destroys the villages, the fields, the forests but also animals. Despite the vast research by academics on the destruction of the villages by the Turkish army, little is known about the damage caused by the army to animals. This article deals with the use of mules for the legal or illegal cross-border trade between Turkey-Iraq and Turkey-Iran, more precisely between Kurdish regions, and the destruction of the mules, who play a very important role in this kind of commerce, by the Turkish Army in the context of conflict against the Kurds.

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Alessandro Nova, The Book of the Wind: The Representation of the Invisible (2011) Reviewed by Tomas Macsotay

Tej Vir Singh, Critical Debates in Tourism (2012) Reviewed by Chiara Gius

Fabian Frenzel, Ko Koens, and Malte Steinbrink, eds., Slum Tourism: Poverty, Power and Ethics (2012) Reviewed by Clare A. Sammells

Jennifer Laing and Warwick Frost, Books and Travel: Inspiration, Quests and Transformation (2012) Reviewed by Olga Denti

Stuart Alexander Rockefeller, Starting from Quirpini: The Travels and Places of a Bolivian People (2010) Reviewed by Marie D. Price

Churnjeet Mahn, British Women's Travel to Greece, 1840-1914: Travels in the Palimpsest (2012) Reviewed by Semele Assinder

Naghmeh Sohrabi, Taken for Wonder: Nineteenth-Century Travel Accounts from Iran to Europe (2012) Reviewed by Arash Khazeni

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Osvaldo Croci

Since the mid-1980s Italy’s relations with the United States (US)

have been characterised by occasional periods of tension, usually

following some unilateral American initiative in the Mediterranean.

At the beginning of 1999 it seemed that the two countries

were again on a collision course. The US was uneasy about Italian

diplomatic overtures to Iran and Libya. Italy, for its part, ignored

American advice that it extradite Kurdish nationalist leader Ocalan

to Turkey where he was wanted for terrorist activities, and it

repeatedly and publicly expressed strong reservations about the

rationale and effectiveness of the periodic Anglo-American bombing

of Iraq. Then, in early March, came the verdict of an American

military court acquitting the pilot responsible for the Cermis accident

of February 1998. The Italian government, backed by practically

the whole of parliament, reacted by calling for a review and

possible re-negotiation of the treaty regulating the use of NATO’s

military bases in Italy.

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Emiliano Alessandri

Despite Silvio Berlusconi’s much-publicized friendship with US President

George W. Bush, the election of Barack Obama in November 2008

did not lead to any appreciable deterioration of US-Italy relations. The

clash of personalities and “ideologies” that some had predicted did not

materialize. The two leaders soon established a cordial and pragmatic

relationship. The emphasis on continuity, however, did not deter

change. In fact, the shift in priorities and approach brought about by

the Obama administration during its first year in office altered the context

within which Italian foreign policy was carried out. New opportunities

opened up as Italy’s engagement with Russia and Iran, which

had attracted criticism in the past, also became the stated goal of the

US government. At the same time, Italian foreign policy was faced

with new constraints as Obama’s new course combined US leadership

with coordination, expecting European allies to consult with Washington

on dossiers having both national and transatlantic dimensions.

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The Shadows of Knowability

Reading between Opaque Narrative and Transparent Text

Younes Saramifar

The torch of ember and its puzzling knowability are my exemplars, serving to open the binary of opacity and transparency in narrativity. I highlight inadequacies in the binary of opacity and transparency by examining the works of Peter Lamarque and Clare Birchall on matters of narrative and secrecy. I will try to see how one can think about opacity/transparency through the lenses of speculative realism and object-oriented philosophy. I do so by drawing examples from memories of the Iran-Iraq war (1980–1989) and explaining how the language of remembering becomes the realm of a tension between presence and absentia, between the unsaid within the said. I explore how memory-as-narrative and narrative-as-memory sustain the potentiality that eludes Orwellian newspeak.

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Introduction

Anthropological Approaches to the Study of Children in the Middle East

Erika Friedl and Abderrahmane Moussaoui

For several reasons there exist only relatively few ethnographic studies of children in the Middle East or in the diaspora. Accordingly, the articles in this issue of Anthropology of the Middle East represent thematically and theoretically highly divergent projects, all based on ethnographic topics and methodologies. Geographically they encompass different locations, and thematically they range from the history of childhood in Iran to matters of socio-cultural integration in Austria; from legal matters concerning youths in Algeria to socio-psychological problems of schoolchildren in Lebanon and to parent-child dynamics in Morocco. The short research, book and conference reports in this issue emphasize approaches and topics in critical anthropology as applied to the Middle East.

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L'âge du bronze en Asie centrale

La civilisation de l'Oxus

Henri-Paul Francfort

The Bronze Age civilisation of Central Asia developed during the second half of the third millennium BC. Besides elements resembling Middle Eastern contemporary civilisations (e.g. economy, art), it displays also some peculiarities resembling earlier periods (e.g. importance of hunting), as well as specific steppe relations (e.g. pottery, horses) and purely local traits (e.g. animal burials, camel domestication, lapis lazuli, tin trade). This original 'Oxus civilisation' raises a number of issues related to environmental (arid period), ethno-linguistic (Indo-Iranian), historical (chronology, origin, decline) and methodological problems, such as its place in a neo-evolutionist scheme as a manifestation of a proto-urban phenomenon. The longue durée, revisited as a system in the Middle Asian interaction sphere, seems a promising way of understanding this civilisation.

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Gijs Mom, Georgine Clarsen and Cotten Seiler

Last year President Hugo Chávez of Venezuela announced the appearance of what a Dutch national newspaper called an “anticapitalist car.” The two models, named by Chávez himself as the “Orinoco” and the “Arauca,” after rivers that run through Venezuela, are locally assembled under a preferential license agreement with the Chinese automaker Chery. The cars are sold for half the price of other makes and are marketed to the expanding Venezuelan middle class. They are intended as “new attainments of the revolution” that are meant to raise the “standard of life of the people.” This new venture was in a tradition that Chávez’s opponents claim started in 2006, when he came close to making a similar deal with Iranian president Ahmadinejad.