Russian Beyond Russia

Posters and ads in Russian and Kazakh (written in Cyrillic) are seen outside a small store in Shymkent, Kazakhstan. President Nursultan Nazarbayev’s recent statement that the Kazakh language would move from the Cyrillic to the Latin script by 2025 has renewed political debate over the language question in Kazakhstan. (Photo: Asian Development Bank)

Language is harmfully intertwined with politics these days in Eurasia. The swirling debates are raising questions about the boundaries of Russianness.

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Alexander Morrison is Professor of History at Nazarbayev University, Astana, Kazakhstan. He is the author of Russian Rule in Samarkand 1868 - 1910. A Comparison with British India (Oxford, 2008) and is currently writing a history of the Russian conquest of Central Asia. Morrison’s web page can be found at: The views expressed in this commentary are Morrison’s own and do not necessarily represent the position of Nazarbayev University.

Russian Beyond Russia

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