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Eastward to Tartary, Robert Kaplan's first book to focus on a single region since his bestselling Balkan Ghosts, introduces readers to an explosive and little-known part of the world destined to become a tinderbox of the future.
Kaplan takes us on a spellbinding journey into the heart of a volatile region, stretching from Hungary and Romania to the far shores of the oil-rich Caspian Sea. Through dramatic stories of unforgettable characters, Kaplan illuminates the tragic history of this unstable area that he describes as the new fault line between East and West. He ventures from Turkey, Syria, and Israel to the turbulent countries of the Caucasus, from the newly rich city of Baku to the deserts of Turkmenistan and the killing fields of Armenia. The result is must reading for anyone concerned about the state of our world in the decades to come.
About the Author
Robert D. Kaplan is the bestselling author of sixteen books on foreign affairs and travel translated into many languages, including Asia’s Cauldron, The Revenge of Geography, Monsoon, The Coming Anarchy, and Balkan Ghosts. He is a senior fellow at the Center for a New American Security and a contributing editor at The Atlantic, where his work has appeared for three decades. He was chief geopolitical analyst at Stratfor, a visiting professor at the United States Naval Academy, and a member of the Pentagon’s Defense Policy Board. Foreign Policy magazine has twice named him one of the world’s Top 100 Global Thinkers.
Read an Excerpt
Excerpted from "Eastward to Tartary"
Copyright © 2001 Robert D. Kaplan.
Excerpted by permission of Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Table of Contents
|Part I||The Balkans|
|1.||Rudolf Fischer, Cosmopolitan||3|
|3.||The Widening Chasm||18|
|4.||Third World Europe||29|
|8.||Wrestlers Versus Democrats||68|
|9.||The Legacy of Orthodoxy||78|
|10.||"To the City"||85|
|Part II||Turkey and Greater Syria|
|11.||The "Deep State"||93|
|12.||The "Corpse in Armour"||104|
|13.||The New Caliphate||115|
|14.||The Sacred and the Profane||126|
|15.||The Corporate Satellite||147|
|16.||The Caravan State||170|
|17.||Crossing the Jordan||184|
|18.||Sepphoris and the Renewal of Judaism||195|
|19.||Throbbing Heart of the Middle East||201|
|Part III||The Caucasus and Tartary|
|20.||To Turkey's Northeastern Border||213|
|21.||Stalin's Beautiful Homeland||220|
|23.||From Tbilisi to Baku||256|
|25.||By Boat to Tartary||282|
|27.||A Herodotean Landscape||303|
|28||Earth, Fire, Water||311|
What People are Saying About This
Writing in the glorious tradition of great Western travelers to the East in the last 150 years, Robert Kaplan belongs in the company of giants like Sir Richard Burton, Charles Montagu Doughty, and Dame Freya Stark. He is a national resource. Traveler, political observer, historian, modern-day Marco Polo, he reports with a novelist's flair on the Gordian knots of the future.
author of Passionate Nomad: The Life of Freya Stark
Kaplan is one of the two or three top travel writers of our day. He chooses important places (not merely pretty); he studies up on history, geography, and societies; and he tells wonderful stories about people. I'm a great believer in the power of anecdote, and Kaplan is a master of anecdote—not simply to entertain but to instruct. Even when I disagree, I come away wiser.
author of The Wealth and Poverty of Nations
"Erudite and intrepid... [Kaplan] is a deft guide to wherever he chooses to lead you."
The New York Times Book Review
"Packed with provocative insights."
"A graceful writer... Providing historical (and cultural and religious) context is what Kaplan does best."
Los Angeles Times
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
One of the best reads I've had i a while, and I've had some good ones. This book has really changed my thinking about many things: the downside when tyrannical empires end (Kaplan looks hard at the Soviet Union), the strange bedfellows of frontier politics (Israeli and Iranian oilmen in Central Asia), the role of the West, if any, in stabilizing the Balkans, the Near East, and Central Asia before it's too late (Iraq, maybe?), and the frequency with which good intentions cause horrific catastrophe, while bad intentions sometimes bring about a great gift to a neglected part of the world. I guess I'm not an anarchist any more, but if I was, Kaplan's work could have talked me out of it.
a great regional comparison of police states and dictatorships, then and now.