Islam, reform and revolution in central asia

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Fall Semester 2007: T&Th, 2:00-3:15 in LA3-205

Office: FO2-116, Phone: 562-985-8765, Email:
Office hours: T 8:30-10:30 and Th 3:30-4:30, or by appointment


This course is an introduction to the history of Islam, reform and revolution in Central Asia. The main objective of this survey is to familiarize you with the history of modernity in the region, which began during the second part of the nineteenth century and led to the complicated events of the twenty-first century. The chronological emphasis begins with the pre-modern reform attempts of the late 1800s in Imperial Russia, and ends with the emergence of the post-Soviet Republics of the 1990s. The survey examines the history of change and continuity in the Persian and Turkic-speaking lands. The reform attempts among the Muslim peoples of the Russian Empire revealed a dynamic process. The Orthodox Christian Russian Empire and its Muslim subjects initiated change and evolution. This course will address the debates and struggles between the empire and its subjects. It will also examine the influence of Soviet Socialism in this process of political transformation. The course will pay special attention to the long-lasting Stalinist era.

This course meets one of the core requirements of the Middle East/Asia/World areas of concentration in the History major.
The History Department now requires majors to move through a sequence of courses that begins with History 301, is followed by History 302, and culminates in a senior seminar (History 499) that matches one of the areas of concentration they have chosen for the major. History 499 must be taken in the student's last semester of work or after 18 units of upper-division work in the major. Those 18 units must include at least 6 units, that is, two courses, in the concentration of the History 499 being taken. Students in History 499 are required to assemble a portfolio that contains their work in their upper-division history courses. This portfolio is designed to enable students to show development in the major and mastery of key analytical, mechanical, and presentation skills. As part of this process, history majors (or prospective history majors) should save all work from upper-division history courses for eventual inclusion in this portfolio. For portfolio guidelines, see For questions and/or advising about the portfolio, contact Dr. Sharlene Sayegh,

Enrollment in this course implies acceptance of all rules, policies and requirements of this class. The syllabus serves as your contract for the course. I reserve the right to make small changes to this syllabus in accordance with the specifics of the class dynamic.

I will expect you to complete all the assigned readings for the day, before you come to class. You should be prepared to discuss the readings and participate in all the class discussions. All the written assignments are due at the beginning of class. I will deduct points for late papers. To pass the class, you will complete all the assignments. Failure to complete any of these components means that you will fail the course.


Taking an incomplete is strongly discouraged and rarely granted. . I will give incompletes only if there is a case of documented family or medical emergency. (See below). In those cases, University policy states that at least 2/3 of course assignments must have been completed for an incomplete to be granted. For incompletes, you must make arrangements with me in advance.


You must contact me if a conflict arises that will prevent you from attending class. You may make up a missed exam or assignment only if you have an excused absence and approval from me.


Attendance is required. Missing more than five lectures will have a negative effect on your grade. I am not obligated to consider other absences accept the following excused absences: including illness or injury to the student; death, injury, or serious illness of an immediate family member or the like; religious reasons (California Education Code section 89320); jury duty or government obligation; university sanctioned or approved activities (examples include: artistic performances, forensics presentations, participation in research conferences, intercollegiate athletic activities, student government, required class field trips.) If in doubt, please read the CSULB attendance policy: Please contact me immediately if you need to be absent. If I do not hear from you, I will consider your absence unexcused.


Consistent tardiness will not be acceptable and will result in a grade deduction. You need to let me know ahead of time if you are going to be late. If you are late to class beyond 20 minutes of seminar time, I will consider you absent for the day.


I will not allow reading of extraneous materials, listening to headsets, private conversations between students and talking on cell phones. PLEASE TURN OFF CELL PHONES, PAGERS AND OTHER DISTRACTIONS!


You may use your laptops ONLY to take notes.


Make sure you have your email directed toward your preferred email address in order to receive class news. It is your responsibility to make the appropriate change.


It is the student’s responsibility to notify me in advance of the need for accommodation of a disability.


Plagiarism is presenting the work, ideas, or words of another person, including one of your peers, or a web site as one’s own. It is your responsibility to read the section on cheating and plagiarism in the CSULB catalog. I am obligated to follow these strict rules. Please talk to me if you have any questions about giving proper credit to other people’s work and academic integrity. A single instance of cheating and plagiarism will result, at the very least, in a failing grade for that assignment. Depending on the severity of the case, other consequences may include a failing grade for the class, regardless of performance on other assignments, and further disciplinary actions, including suspension and expulsion, based on University policy as summarized in the Schedule of Classes. (Graduate students will be held to an even higher standard. A single act of cheating or plagiarism will result in a failing grade in the course, regardless of other graded course assignments.) While all written work must be exclusively your work, you may study and prepare together. (In the interest of academic integrity, I must give Professors Eric Altice and Houri Berberian credit for this syllabus, whose syllabi I used as models.)


It is the student’s responsibility to withdraw from classes. Instructors have no obligation to withdraw students who so not attend courses, and may choose not to do so. Withdrawal from a course after the first two weeks of instruction requires the signature of the instructor and department chair, and is permissible only for serious and compelling reasons. During the final three weeks of instruction, withdrawals are not permitted except in cases such as accident or serious illness where the circumstances causing the withdrawal are clearly beyond the student’s control and the assignment of an incomplete is not practical. Ordinarily, withdrawals in the category involve total withdrawal from the university. (However, drops at this time are not generally approved except in cases of accident or serious illness.)


A = 93-100 A-= 90-92

B+= 87-89, B = 83-86, B-= 80-82

C+= 77-79, C = 73-76, C-= 70-72

D = 60-69

F = 0-59

If you need help with written assignments or require guidance on note-taking and critical reading, please take advantage of the Writer's Resource Lab (LAB-312; 985-4329) or the Learning Assistance Center (Library East 12; 985-5350).


You should acquire the texts listed below, either through the University Bookstore or other means online. Other required readings are available through eReserve ( or are available through an internet link; your class password is cenasia. It is your responsibility to access these readings ahead of time, print them out, and have them read and prepared in time for class.


  • Aini, Sadriddin. The Sands of Oxus: Boyhood Reminiscences of Sadriddin Aini (1998)

  • Edgar, Adrienne L. Tribal Nation: The Making of Soviet Turkmenistan (2004)

  • Kamp, Marianne. The New Woman in Uzbekistan (2006)

  • Khalid, Adeeb. The Politics of Muslim Cultural Reform: Jadidism in Central Asia (1998)


Guidelines for all assignments must be retrieved from eReserve.

Course page password: cenasia

You must consult and follow guidelines/instructions for all assignments. Failure to do so will be reflected in your grade. No excuses! Please note that all of the assignments in this course satisfy the criteria for the 499 Senior Seminar Portfolios.

For guidelines, see

  1. Portfolio: You must submit a preliminary copy of your portfolio to me by September 18. I will return the preliminary copy to you with comments/suggestions. Material from this seminar (499) may be added to the final portfolio.

  1. Class Participation: I will expect you to participate in class discussion. I will call on you. Simply attending class without participation will be insufficient and will be reflected in grades. If you are too shy to participate, you need to talk to me so that we can make other arrangements, such as written responses to readings, to make up for this portion of the grade. For the most part, the themes of this course are current and controversial. There is a great potential of passionate discussion. I will expect you to respond and refer to the topic at hand rather than the individual. In other words, please challenge your peers’ view points instead of questioning their personal motives. Please voice your agreements and disagreements respectfully. According to Mohandas Gandhi “when restraint and courtesy are added to strength, the latter becomes irresistible.”

  1. Written Discussion Questions and Leading a Discussion: I will expect everyone to turn in two discussion questions or topics from the readings every Thursday. I will collect them at the beginning of the class.

  1. Paper Presentation: The final two weeks of the seminar are reserved for you to make a 20-minute presentation of your research. Your paper need not be completed by the time you make your presentation, but it should be near enough to completion that you can talk about your conclusions.

  1. Writing Assignments: All written assignments, other than the research proposal and annotated bibliography, must be submitted in hard copy and electronically through Beachboard to Turnitin to ensure the authenticity of the presented written work. I will not grade assignments that have not been submitted to Turnitin on the same day that the hard copy is due.

      1. Book Review: You will write a review of one of the three books (Edgar, Kamp or Khalid). I will assign books to reviewers on September 6. Each reviewer will lead the discussion on the book they reviewed.

      2. Research Paper: You must complete a major research paper (approximately 20 pages (30 pages for graduate students) with double spaced paragraphs and one-inch margins). These papers may be either historiographical or primary-source research. The essay should demonstrate your own views on the specific topic at hand. I must approve your topic, which will concern the topics of religion, reform and revolution in Central Asia. You are required to make use of primary and secondary sources to construct a coherent argument and to substantiate it with evidence. The paper must be well-structured and well-written. It must have footnotes and bibliography appropriate to the discipline of history. It must exhibit the ability to integrate material from the lectures, readings and class discussions. For research guides, citing internet sources, document links, see


Class Participation 10%

Paper Presentation 15%

Book Review 20%

Portfolio 25%

Research Paper 30%


WEEK 1: September 4 & 6

Topic: Introductions


  • Khalid, preface and introduction: xiii-17.

WEEK 2: September 11 & 13

Topic: Russian Colonialism

No class meeting this week (I will be in Germany for a conference)

Reading: You need to use the class time for reading the following

  • Khalid, chapters 1 and 2: 19-79.

WEEK 3: September 18 & 20

Topic: The Politics of Reform


  • Khalid, chapters 3 and 4: 80-154.

WEEK 4: September 25 & 27

Topic: Aspirations of Nationhood


  • Khalid, chapters 5 and 6: 155-215.

WEEK 5: October 2 & 4

Topic: From Reform to Revolution


  • Khalid, chapters 7 and 8: 216-279.

WEEK 6: October 9 & 11

Topic: Central Asian Intellectuals


  • Khalid, epilogue: 281-301

  • Aini, introduction to chapter 10: 1-73.

WEEK 7: October 16 & 18

Topic: The Meaning of Socialism for Central Asians


  • Aini, chapters 11-21: 73-151.

WEEK 8: October 23 & 25

No class meeting on the 25th

Topic: Transformation or Evolution?


  • Aini, chapters 22-29, and appendices 1 & 2: 151-252.

WEEK 9: October 30 & November 1

Topic: Russian Imperial and Soviet Concepts of Ethnicity and Nationality


  • Kamp, introduction and chapters 1, 2 and 3: 3-76.

WEEK 10: November 6 & 8

Topic: Central Asian Women and Education


  • Kamp, chapters 4 and 5: 76-123.

WEEK 11: November 13 & 15

Topic: The Hujum


  • Kamp, chapters 6 and 7: 123-186.

WEEK 12: November 20 & Thanksgiving

Topic: The Great Terror


  • Kamp, chapters 8, 9 and 10: 186-239.

WEEK 13: November 27 & 29

No class meeting on November 29. Instead, I will meet with everyone individually in my office FO2-116

Topic: Tribalism


  • Edgar, introduction, chapters 1, 2 and 3: 1-100.

WEEK 14: December 4 & 6

Topic: Nomadism, Sedentarization and Elite-making


  • Edgar, chapters 4, 5 and 6: 100-197.

WEEK 15: December 11 & 13

Topic: The End of the Soviet Union for Central Asians


  • Edgar, chapters 7, 8 and conclusion: 197-267.

WEEK 16: December 18 & 20

Topic: Final Exam Week


  1. Final Paper (December 20)

Note that during week 14 and 15 we will have student paper presentations.

See the next page for the due date schedule.


September 6: I will assign everyone a book to review

September 18*: Preliminary copy of your portfolio

September 25*: A list of potential questions for your final paper

October 9: Khalid book review

October 11*: A revised list of questions

October 23*: Preliminary bibliography

October 30: Aini book review

November 13*: Annotated Bibliography

November 20: Kamp book review

November 27*: Paper draft

November 29*: Individual meetings with students

December 4, 6 and 11: Paper presentations

December 13: Edgar book review

December 20*: Final paper

*I will not accept a final paper unless all of these requirements have been met in a timely manner.

HISTORY 499: Islam, Reform and Revolution in Central Asia, Fall 2007, Ali F. İğmen

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