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The ‘Iran’ Curtain: the historiography of Abu’l-Khairid (Shaybanid) arts of the book and the ‘Bukhara School’ during the Cold War

Comstock-Skipp, Jaimee K. (2023) The ‘Iran’ Curtain: the historiography of Abu’l-Khairid (Shaybanid) arts of the book and the ‘Bukhara School’ during the Cold War. Journal of Art Historiography (28). ISSN 2042-4752

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URL of Published Version: https://arthistoriography.wordpress.com/28-jun23/

Identification Number/DOI: https://doi.org/10.48352/uobxjah.00004267


In treating illustrated Persian-language manuscript arts from the medieval and early-modern periods, dynasties have come to be associated with Iran and their art forms labelled ‘Persian’ and ‘Iranian’. Materials from sixteenth-century Central Asia— implying the Abu’l-Khairid dynasty (commonly called Shaybanid Uzbek, in power 1500—1599)—challenge this classification. Scholarship has witnessed intellectual fissures dividing Iran from Central Asia, and Russian-speaking and Anglophone scholars from each other. These are not pedantic trivialities, but deliberate intrusions of national and political agendas into art historical analyses. The geographic split partitioning Iran from Central Asia has its origins in the historical battles waged between the Safavids and Abu’l-Khairids across the sixteenth century, while the linguistic and ideological rift separating English- and Russian-language academics stems from political divisions from the time of British and Romanov imperial ambitions during the late nineteenth century, through Cold-War tensions spanning the twentieth.

Type of Work:Article
School/Faculty:Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Arts & Law
Department:Department of Art History, Curating and Visual Studies
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This article is archived in ePapers for preservation purposes

Date:June 2023
Keywords:historiography, codicology, Persian manuscripts, Central Asia, early modern period, US—USSR political relations
Subjects:N Fine Arts > NX Arts in general
Copyright Status:Copyright for articles published in this journal is retained by the authors, with first publication rights granted to the journal. Authors may subsequently archive and publish the pdfs as produced by the journal. By virtue of their appearance in this open access journal, articles are free to use, with proper attribution, in educational and other non-commercial settings. Copyright restrictions apply to the use of any images contained within the articles. This work is licensed under a CC BY-NC 4.0 International License https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/
ID Code:4267
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