EurasiaChat: A year of de-Russification in Central Asia
Plus: Rising gender-based violence in Kyrgyzstan
This week on our podcast, Aigul Adzhieva, a documentary filmmaker investigating Kyrgyzstan's epidemic of gender-based and domestic violence, discusses how the scourge is fueled by social fragmentation, the growing wealth gap, and a lack of kindness in Kyrgyz society.
She and hosts Aigerim Toleukhanova and Alisher Khamidov then reflect on the anniversary of Russia's full-scale invasion of Ukraine. A year into the war, Central Asia is never going to be the same as many people distance themselves from Russia and the Russian language.
But how far will de-Russification go?
While the Tajik government has pushed citizens to ditch Russian-style names for years, this effort to foster national consciousness has acquired new salience as Tajiks, and most Central Asians, feel Russia’s war threatens their identities.
The Soviet legacy lives on, however: In Uzbekistan, the Education Ministry is forcing university rectors to make lists of students who are politically reliable – and those who are not.
Aigerim Toleukhanova is a journalist and researcher from Kazakhstan.
Alisher Khamidov is a writer based in Bishkek.
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