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  • Uzbek Culture


    Modern Uzbek dancer in traditional garment
    Our portal is devoted to various aspects of cultural life in Uzbekistan. With its millenia history, our country boasts rich and original cultural tradition, which grew based on several fundamental turns in history, where completely new phenomena and ideas came to life, bringing about sweeping changes in people's life and tradition.

    On our pages we collected materials that pertain both to ancient times, Middle ages, and modern era, when the development of Uzbek culture gained a new momentum, in particular, after independence that Uzbekistan received in 1991.

    Uzbek cultural tradition is vast and interesting, and it may be a subject of study not only for experts who are professionally involved in exploring ethnic cultures and history, but also for ordinary people who are often excited to view the beauty and colorful vibrance of tradition that goes hundreds years back.
    Uzbekistan is a country where numerous ethnic groups have co-existed for centuries, as did nearly all world religions, such as Zoroastrinism, Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. The religious communities, each with its own particular traditions in lifestyle, architecture, folklore and handcrafts, were enriching one another, leading to a phenomenon known as 'melting pot' of cultures in Central Asia.
    Melting pot of cultures
    Bukharian Synagogue
    A bright example of such cultural co-existance and tolerance is the story of Bukharian jews, a small community that lived in the ancient city of Bukhara for centuries. Amazingly, in Bukhara, the pivot of Islamic religion in Central Asia, the origin of the most rigorous Moslem teachings and personalities, a Jewish community lived and flourished, serving local people with types of work that the Jews would usually do in the Middle Ages.

    In recent years, the community of Jews in Bukhara has diminished significantly, as many Jews chose to move to their new home, Israel, and build a new life there.
    Architecture
    Architecture - Soviet style concert hall in Tashkent
    Architecture in Uzbekistan has influenced many schools and political turns so numerous in the history of this country. From georgeous madrassah and huge masoleums built in Middle ages by powerful rulers, such as Tamerlane, in Samarkand and Bukhara, to massive buildings of classic style in Stalin's era and modern-looking constructions in the period after independence.

    A beautiful combination of the past and present is something that attracts people about architecture in Uzbekistan. Even in Tashkent, you can experience quite different views and impressions, from narrow streets and clay houses in the traditional part of town, where Uzbeks still lead the life their ancestors had, except for modern amenities such as electricity and hot water supply, you would move to fashionable modern districts sparkling with neon lights, or calm and airy parks where you can enjoy shade in a hot summer day.
    Uzbek Literature and Alisher Navoi
    Founder of Uzbek Literature - monument to A. Navoi in Tashkent
    Alisher Navoi, a famous poet, writer, politician and mystic, who is considered as the founder of Uzbek literature and the person who introduced the Uzbek language into daily practices of governmental bodies, ministries and judicial acitivity. His lyrics includes four big divans, with kasyds, gazels, kytas and rubaihs. The main work, opus magnum of Alisher Navoi was 'Hamsa'. He was also known for creating the encyclopedic works:

    * GharaТib al-Sighar ("Wonders of Childhood")
    * Navadir al-Shabab ("Rarities or Witticisms of Youth")
    * Bada'i' al-Wasat ("Marvels of Middle Age")
    * Fawa'id al-Kibar ("Advantages of Old Age")