Remembering the Soviet Times in Central Asia: Urban Life Through the Eyes of Old-Residents of Ferghana (Uzbekistan) and Bishkek (Kyrgyzstan).
Seminar "L'Asie centrale dans tous ses états : questions et méthodes"
Seminar organized by: Cloé Drieu, Stéphane Dudoignon, Carole Ferret, Isabelle Ohayon et Julien Thorez
Drawing on narratives of long-term residents of the two cities, this presentation investigates the ways in which positive memories of the Soviet past emerge when people speak about the urban environment and its recent transformation. Existing patterns of remembering will be conceptualized within the framework of “localized” and “de-localized” forms of memory. Presence and purpose of this “nostalgia” in post-Soviet Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan will be explored from a number of different perspectives. In attempting to deepen an understanding of “why” such nostalgia exists, it will also be considered “what” elements of the past are most fondly remembered and “who” are the people and communities (for example, ethnic, cultural, socio-economic or professional groups) who remember particular elements of the Soviet past.