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Central Asia in World Literature (with Hamid Ismailov)
March 31 @ 3:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Uzbek-British writer and journalist Hamid Ismailov’s work spans the end of the Soviet period and the entry of the former Soviet republics into a globalized, post-Cold War world. In this talk, Ismailov will speak about these themes in his own work, which tracks Central Asia’s role in a changing global political and literary scene. The talk will also touch on Central Asia’s place in Soviet and post-Soviet literature, as well as on the multilingual nature of Ismailov’s writing, which spans Uzbek, Russian, and English.
Born in 1954 in Tokmok, Kyrgyzstan, Hamid Ismailov is an Uzbek journalist and writer who was forced to flee Uzbekistan in 1992 due to what the state dubbed “unacceptable democratic tendencies.” He emigrated to the United Kingdom, where he worked with the BBC World Service for 25 years. His works are banned in Uzbekistan. He is the author of numerous novels in Russian and Uzbek. Several of his Russian-original novels have been published in English translation, including The Railway, The Dead Lake, which was long listed for the 2015 Independent Foreign Fiction Prize, and The Underground. The Devils’ Dance is the first of his Uzbek novels to appear in English, and the translation by Donald Rayfield and John Farndon won the 2019 ERBD Literature Prize. The Devils’ Dance forms a trilogy alongside Of Strangers and Bees and Ismailov’s new novel, Manaschi.
Watch the event on YouTube here.