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Letter from the editor

The Yellow River, the Chinese State, and the Ecology of North China

"To the present day, the legitimacy of political order remains dependent on keeping the river within a complex series of embankments that ties local societies to the state. At the same time, the unique qualities of the river, namely its high levels of sediment as it flows across the North China Plain, have posed an ever-present threat to these embankments and the relationship between state and society in the region. ..." – By David A. Pietz

The Persian Cosmopolis

"During the first several centuries after the conquest, even while Arab rulers were assimilating Persian imperial ideas and bureaucratic techniques, a linguistic revolution was quietly taking shape—the emergence of New Persian, a synthesis of Middle Persian and Arabic. ..." – By Richard Eaton

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