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Ilhan Niaz is a professor of history at Quaid-i-Azam University (QAU) in Islamabad, Pakistan.
He is winner of the first Karachi Literature Festival (KLF) Award for best non fiction in English in 2011 and the winner of the Higher Education Commission of Pakistan's Best Book Publication in Social Sciences, Arts and Humanities of 2010 Award.
His first book, 'An Inquiry into the Culture of Power of the Subcontinent' develops a theoretical framework that explains the rise and fall of states in South Asia. Niaz presents a macro-historical overview of South Asia from the Indus Valley Civilization to near-contemporary India and Pakistan and demonstrates the elements of continuity in the behavior of ruling elites over this period. He argues that since independence from Britain in 1947, India and Pakistan have slowly gone back to their primordial cultures of power that are delusional, arbitrary, ideocratic and treat the state as a personal estate.
In his second book, 'The Culture of Power and Governance of Pakistan 1947-2008', Niaz provides a detailed study of Pakistan's experience of behavioral regression since 1947.
Niaz's latest book, 'Old World Empires: Cultures of Power and Governance in Eurasia' advances the framework developed in his works on South Asia and Pakistan and applies it to India, China, Persia, Continental Europe, the Ottoman Empire, Russia, Japan, and the United Kingdom. Niaz takes a long-view of historical development that combines deterministic factors such as geography and environment with variable factors such as leadership, politics, and ideology, to provide an overview of how states develop structurally and in terms of mentality. This is the first instance of a Pakistani historian developing a philosophical framework for understanding global macro-history.