Narratives of smaller countries/regions
July 7, 2022 1:20 AM   Subscribe

I recently read and enjoyed The History of Bhutan by Karma Phuntso. I’m looking for similar books that delve into the history and culture of smaller countries/regions. Any part of the world works for me!

What I’m not looking for: travelogues by Europeans during the colonial period and texts that are written with an obvious political bias (any side of the political spectrum).
posted by bigyellowtaxi to Society & Culture (9 answers total) 12 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: You might enjoy Vanished Kingdoms: the History of Half Forgotten Europe by Norman Davies
posted by crocomancer at 1:34 AM on July 7, 2022 [4 favorites]

Best answer: I’m currently reading The Basque History of the World by Mark Kurlansky.
posted by kevinbelt at 4:20 AM on July 7, 2022 [1 favorite]

Best answer: Making Sense of the Troubles: A History of the Northern Ireland Conflict by David McKittrick

Pretty balanced book about Northern Ireland.
posted by knapah at 4:27 AM on July 7, 2022

Best answer: Our Mothers’ Land, on Wales.

Rosalind Mitchison’s history of Scotland.

Some of Alistair Moffat’s books might work. He has one on the Scottish Borders, for instance. His latest, which I haven’t read, is The Secret History of Here.

The Life and Death of St Kilda.

Shapwick, if you don’t mind archaeology with some history.
posted by paduasoy at 2:08 PM on July 7, 2022

Best answer: While obviously on a city and not a country, Samir Kassir's Beirut might be of interest.
posted by Ahmad Khani at 2:14 PM on July 7, 2022

Best answer: Richard Foltz, The Ossetes: Modern Day Scythians of the Caucasus
posted by Morpeth at 3:55 AM on July 8, 2022

Best answer: There are lots of books on the Languedoc and the Cathars. I can’t find the details of the one I read, but some are discussed here.
posted by paduasoy at 3:27 PM on July 8, 2022

Best answer: Came back to add The Debatable Land by Graham Robb. Border territory England / Scotland.
posted by paduasoy at 9:06 AM on July 19, 2022

Response by poster: I've started with Mark Kurlansky's book on the Basque region and it is exactly what I was looking for. Many thanks to everyone!
posted by bigyellowtaxi at 6:50 AM on July 29, 2022 [1 favorite]

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