HIST/SIS 225--Lecture Outline
Inner Asia Long Before Chingis Khan (I): The Türks, Tibetans, and Uighurs

I. Türks, Hephthalites, Tibetans, the T'ang, Byzantium, the Sogdians and the Arabs--chaos or recognizable patterns of Inner Asian politics?

A. The Türk empires and their relations with Sassanians and Byzantium (560s)--the importance of controlling trade routes.
B. Division of the Türk state (beg. 580s), encouraged by growing Chinese engagement--divide and conquer.
C. Xuanzang visits W. Türk emperor T'ung yabghu (630); Turks under T'ang control.
D. Khazars astride W. end of the Silk Road.
E. Second Türk Empire (690s-); Bilgä Kaghan (d. 734) laments Chinese influence.
F. The Tibetan Empire in 2nd half of 8th c.
1. Control over E. Turkestan, Kansu and Szechwan; influence S. of Himalaya.
2. Dunhuang under Tibetans 787-851.
3. The growing importance of Tibetan (Tantric) Buddhism.

II. Uighurs: a study in nomadic-sedentary relations.

A. The rise and fall of the Uighurs (744-840).
1. Successors to the Türk Empire; the idea of divine right to empire.
2. Saving the T'ang during the An Lu-shan rebellion (755-763); Mou-yü kaghan and the peak of Uighur power.
3. Extorting from the T'ang; battling the Tibetans.
4. Tamim ibn-Bahr visits the Uighurs.
5. Re-constituting the Uighur state.
B. Society and culture and how they changed.
1. Trade and urban influences.
a. Parallels to the history of relations between the Xiongnu and China.
b. Cities/settlements under Uighur control in the Turfan region: Qocho, Kara-Khoja, Yar-Khoto, Bezeklik.
2. Religions.
a. Manichaeism and the Sogdians: parallels to Judaism and the Radhanites in the Khazar state?
b. Nestorianism.
c. Buddhism.

III. Islam arrives in the Tarim Basin

A. Samanids and Karakhanids.
B. The first Turkic Islamic intellectuals: Mahmud Kashgari and Yusuf Hass-Hajib.
C. Islamization of the Uighurs.