Jim Millward, professor of history at Georgetown, has finally published his book on Xinjiang history. (He's been working on the thing for God knows how long!). It's his second book on the region; the first, Beyond the Pass: Economy, Ethnicity, and Empire in Qing Central Asia, 1759-1864, is another excellent book, though badly in need of a colostomy. Jim's joke, not mine. From the blurb on Eurasian Crossroads:
"Drawing on primary sources in several Asian and European languages, James Millward presents a thorough study of Xinjiang's history and people from antiquity to the present and takes a balanced look at the position of Turkic Muslims within the PRC today. While offering fresh material and perspectives for specialists, this engaging survey of Xinjiang's rich environmental, cultural, and ethno-political heritage is also written for travelers, students, and anyone eager to learn about this vital connector between East and West."
I had the good fortune to spend a couple of years at the University of Arizona studying under Jim before he left for greener pastures. He's a class act and a very funny guy. While I haven't read Eurasian Crossroads yet, it promises to be both authoratative and highly readable.
Jim's now working on another book on another subject dear to my heart--the guitar. Jim's a very good player himself, and plays in an old time/bluegrass outfit in D.C. His book will be on the globalization of the instrument.