chapter  3
20 Pages

Central Asia as a Part of the Modern Islamic World

ByJohn O. Voll

The Muslim societies of Central Asia are a visible part of the broader Islamic world. The simple statement seems obvious, but these societies are frequently viewed as isolated and distinctive rather than as part of the larger Islamic community. Two basic generalizations help to highlight the place of Muslim Central Asian societies in the broader Islamic world. The first is that Muslim societies interact actively and importantly with the rest of the Islamic world. The second is that they share the basic experiences of Muslims in other parts of the world. The Muslim societies of Central Asia interact in effective ways with the rest of the Islamic world. This interaction is not simply episodic or of brief duration. Muslims in Central Asia share the basic experiences of other Muslims in the modern world. There are many differences among Muslim experiences, but in some fundamental ways, the differences tend to be related to the specifics of immediate contexts.