Description - Tradition and Society in Turkmenistan by Carole Blackwell
This unique study of Turkmen women is based on the findings of interviews in rural and urban areas throughout Turkmenistan and a detailed examination of several hundred folksongs, translated and published for the first time in English. These songs, sung by women at various stages of their lives - childhood, young womanhood, marriage, child-rearing and mourning - express the concerns and dreams of women whose silence and submission have often been deemed more important than their opinions. Created in different tribes, locations and historical eras, the songs have a timeless quality that still resonates with women today. After a brief introduction to the history, geography and people of Turkmenistan, the book considers the varied roles played by women in their families and wider society and the influence of religion and ritual in their lives. In particular, it considers connections between Islam, Zoroastrianism, and the ancient folk beliefs and traditions that still permeate the thinking of many Turkmen women. It describes family relationships and seeks to explain why women seem to have a special love for their daughters but an overwhelming desire to bear sons.
The book analyses some widely held images of the Turkmen woman, including the silent bride, the powerful mother-in-law, and the evil woman. Most importantly, it reveals ways in which Turkmen women perceive themselves. The final section of the book contains transcripts and annotated translations of 350 of the songs. The book will be of interest to those working in a wide range of academic disciplines, notably Central Asian studies, women's studies, folklore and anthropology. The Turkmen versions of the songs will be of particular interest to scholars of Turkic language, literature and music. The book will also be of interest to those who have travelled or lived in Turkmenistan.
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(229mm x 152mm x mm)
Publisher: Taylor & Francis Ltd
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