Middle East and South Asia: How separate are they?. They are regions of Asia …. Caucasus Iraq West Cent Asia Iran Tarim Basin Altai Moutains Gobi Desert Mongolia-Amur North China Hindu Kush Indus Basin Ganga Basin Burma to Vietnam.
CaucasusIraqWest Cent AsiaIranTarim BasinAltai MoutainsGobi DesertMongolia-AmurNorth ChinaHindu KushIndus BasinGanga BasinBurma to Vietnam
… and more broadly, of Afro-Eurasia (the world region that Marshall Hodgson considers the vast historic homeland of what he calls “Islamicate cultures”).
Early urban civilization sites at Harappa (Indus Valley, now in Pakistan) were connected by trade and migration to Mesopotamia and Mediterranean Basin
Routes interconnected regions of Afro-Eurasia by land and sea. They carried all the elements of culture in various directions.
Ancient silk roadand Marco Polo’s route
<==Spread of Buddhism: 300BCE-300AD
Spread of Black Plague, circa 1300
India’s first empire marched west in the 4th century BC … as Alexander marched west … The Mauryan Empire rose on the eastern Ganga edge of routes extending across Iran to the Mediterranean … marked by competitors for territorial control over routes of mobility.
The stupa at Sanchi is one of the oldest of the surviving monuments from the Buddhist period.
Empire in South Asia was always a moveable feast,
moving along routes of trade and cultural exchange …
… and compelled substantially by nomadic warrior-herder-merchants who migrated to conquer settled sites of intensive agricultural development – dependent on river water supplies – along routes of trade and cultural mobility in one vast differentiated region of Afro-Eurasia … always connected to the Middle East.