chapter  1
25 Pages

Introduction: integrating Soviet Oriental Studies: Michael Kemper


The purpose of this article is to provide a broad sketch of the chronological development of Soviet Oriental studies, and to discuss some of the major trends and characteristics of Soviet research on the “Soviet Orient” from 1917 to the postSoviet period. This overview will also briefly introduce the various chapters of this volume, and discuss them as contributions to an integrating view on Soviet Oriental studies. “Integrating” here refers, on the one hand, to the elaboration of a perspective on Oriental studies in the USSR as one comprehensive discipline. On the other hand, it refers to the integration of Soviet research on Islam and Muslim societies into the general debates on Oriental studies in Europe and “Orientalism.”1