Citation

Publicizing nationalism: Legitimizing the Turkmen state in Niyazov’s Rukhnama

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Abstract:

As an authoritarian regime, the former Soviet republic of Turkmenistan is often subject to sensationalist articles focusing on the eccentricities of its leaders rather than on scholarly analysis. This paper aims to analyze Turkmenistan’s approach to educating its citizens via the Rukhnama—both the means of indoctrination and the message—as a way of better understanding the country and its policies. From 2002 to Saparmyrat Niyazov’s death in December 2006, the Rukhnama, “the book of the soul,” was a ubiquitous presence in Turkmen life. Unlike traditional textbooks, the Rukhnama was designed to educate all citizens, both children and adults, in the historical, cultural, and spiritual history of their nation in order to distance the country from its Soviet past and create a new Turkmen identity. This paper will analyze nationalistic themes in the Rukhnama, contrasting them to those found in Niyazov’s other writings designed to legitimize his regime to largely external audiences. The paper will conclude by briefly examining the changes that have occurred in the use of the Rukhnama since Niyazov’s death, in order to more truly understand what it means to be a Turkmen in the 21st century. How does the sense of tribal unity based on shared geneological ties that the Rukhnama promotes have bearing on modern Turkmen identity?

Author's Keywords:

post-socialist transformation
Convention
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Association:
Name: 55th Annual Conference of the Comparative and International Education Society
URL:
http://www.cies.us


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URL: http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p493666_index.html
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MLA Citation:

Dolive, Caroline. "Publicizing nationalism: Legitimizing the Turkmen state in Niyazov’s Rukhnama" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the 55th Annual Conference of the Comparative and International Education Society, Fairmont Le Reine Elizabeth, Montreal, Quebec, Canada, <Not Available>. 2014-11-26 <http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p493666_index.html>

APA Citation:

Dolive, C. "Publicizing nationalism: Legitimizing the Turkmen state in Niyazov’s Rukhnama" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the 55th Annual Conference of the Comparative and International Education Society, Fairmont Le Reine Elizabeth, Montreal, Quebec, Canada <Not Available>. 2014-11-26 from http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p493666_index.html

Publication Type: Panel Paper
Abstract: As an authoritarian regime, the former Soviet republic of Turkmenistan is often subject to sensationalist articles focusing on the eccentricities of its leaders rather than on scholarly analysis. This paper aims to analyze Turkmenistan’s approach to educating its citizens via the Rukhnama—both the means of indoctrination and the message—as a way of better understanding the country and its policies. From 2002 to Saparmyrat Niyazov’s death in December 2006, the Rukhnama, “the book of the soul,” was a ubiquitous presence in Turkmen life. Unlike traditional textbooks, the Rukhnama was designed to educate all citizens, both children and adults, in the historical, cultural, and spiritual history of their nation in order to distance the country from its Soviet past and create a new Turkmen identity. This paper will analyze nationalistic themes in the Rukhnama, contrasting them to those found in Niyazov’s other writings designed to legitimize his regime to largely external audiences. The paper will conclude by briefly examining the changes that have occurred in the use of the Rukhnama since Niyazov’s death, in order to more truly understand what it means to be a Turkmen in the 21st century. How does the sense of tribal unity based on shared geneological ties that the Rukhnama promotes have bearing on modern Turkmen identity?


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