Research: Memories of Central Asia
Publication: Jaghnob 1970. Erinnerungen an eine Zwangsumsiedlung in der Tadschikischen SSRReichert Verlag Wiesbaden 2005
Between 1970 and 1971 the Yaghnob, a group of 3500 people with its own language and culture, was forced to leave the Yaghnob Valley, 80km north of Dushanbe, and to settle in the cotton kolkhoz of Zafarobod. Before the relocation they lived in 29 villages in the isolated mountainous valley and dealt with agriculture and pastoral farming in two kolkhoz. Since the 1920s and especially before and after the second WW the state followed the strategy to force the population from the mountainous regions of the Tajik SSR to resettle in the newly established cotton-producing regions in the steppe. Given the grave consequences of these forced relocations on the Tajik society, they have still not been object of scientifical research.
It was the goal of the Magister thesis to reconstruct the history of the resettlement on the administrative and, based on biographical interviews, on the experiental level. This approach aims to clear the history and the different stages of the resettlement until today. The research covers the whole spectrum of official description, fraud and legitimation efforts and the self-image of the people concerned and describes the interaction of the state and the population. The domains of the republican and local politics become as visible as the strategies of the Yaghnob between adaptation and refusal. For my research I got access to the records of different bodies of the administration of soviet Tajikistan as well as on contemporary official statements about the resettlement in the governmental mass media. The central pool of sources, anyway, are the memories of the people concerned to avoid a subjective view based on official sources only.
last update : 05 December 2011