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This modern map of Southwest Asia is meant to help a visitor of this website to have an idea where the different Islamicate societies were located that we grouped under the header of West Asia. The western border of this area is the Red Sea. The northern border runs along the southern shores of the Black Sea, through the Caucasus Mountains and the middle of the Caspian Sea until the Amu Darya. The southern border is marked by the Arabian Sea. The eastern border coincides loosely with today's border of Iran. As with all conventions, this separation of West Asia from North Africa, Central Asia and South Asia is arbitrary. It does not fit always the territories of the historical dynasties. Analogous problems would occur with any other division chosen for the simple purpose of sorting our material, stories, images and debates. We hope that readers will feel encouraged to trespass these artificial boundaries in interesting and imaginative ways.

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