Reviews

Through an overview of the main themes of contemporary poetesses of Tajikistan, the author suggests the scale of the rupture brought about by them with Soviet Tajik poetry, whence recalling their debt to nonconformist poets like Loiq Sherali (1940-2000) and Bozor Sobir (b. 1938), as well as to poetess laureate Gulrukhsor (b. 1947). Z. Dzhandosova recalls the literary innovations of the late 1960s to late 1980s and the participation of poetesses of the time (like Gulchihra Sulaimoni, a daughter of early-twentieth-century avant-gardist poet from Bukhara Payraw Sulaymani: on him, see Central Eurasian Reader 1: reviews No. 526, 528, 553) in the construction of a new and original form of Persian patriotism in Tajikistan. The author also underlines the room given to “small motherlands” in the works of poetesses of the 1980s (Yakhch for Gulrukhsor herself, Wanj for Shahriia, Khujand for Farzona, etc.), as well as to Tajikistan, the Soviet republic being henceforth perceived as part of greater Iran. Last, the author points out the dark inspiration that prevailed during the civil war in the 1990s, and the rebirth called by Farzona in her poems of the last decade. In all, this short study usefully casts light on the literary countryside of Tajikistan in a period of deep change, still insufficiently studied despite the abundance of material and of available oral sources. Conversely and paradoxically, it does not ask the question of a specificity of literature written by women, in the social and intellectual context of Soviet Central Asia, deeply marked by the resonance of gender distribution of roles.

Stéphane A. Dudoignon, National Centre for Scientific Research, Paris
CER: II-5.2.B-439