Xiongnu: The World's First Nomadic Empire (Oxford Studies in Early Empires) (Hardcover)

Xiongnu: The World's First Nomadic Empire (Oxford Studies in Early Empires) By Bryan K. Miller Cover Image
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This book raises the case of the world's first nomadic empire, the Xiongnu, as a prime example of the sophisticated developments and powerful influence of nomadic regimes. Launching from a reconceptualization of the social and economic institutions of mobile pastoralists, the collective chapters trace the course of the Xiongnu Empire from before its initial rise, traversing the wars that challenged it and the reformations that made it stronger, to the legacy left after its eventual fall.

Xiongnu expounds the economic practices and social conventions of steppe herders as fertile foundations for institutions and infrastructure of empire, and renders a model of "empires of mobilities," which engaged the control less of towns and territories and more of the movements of communities and capital to fuel their regimes. By weaving together archaeological examinations with historical investigations, Bryan K. Miller presents a more complex and nuanced narrative of how an empire based firmly in the steppe over two thousand years ago managed to formulate a robust political economy and a complex political matrix that capitalized on mobilities and alternative forms of political participation, and allowed the Xiongnu to dominate vast realms of central Eurasia and leave lasting geopolitical effects on the many worlds around them.

About the Author


Bryan K. Miller is Assistant Professor of Central Asian Art & Archaeology in History of Art and Assistant Curator of Chinese Archaeology at the Museum of Anthropological Archaeology at the University of Michigan.
Product Details
ISBN: 9780190083694
ISBN-10: 0190083697
Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
Publication Date: January 16th, 2024
Pages: 384
Language: English
Series: Oxford Studies in Early Empires