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Authors and Authoritarianism in Central Asia : Failed Agency and Nationalising Authoritarianism in Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan

Kudaibergenova, Diana T. LU and Shin, Boram (2018) In Asian Studies Review p.1-19
Abstract

This paper aims to reconstruct widely accepted concepts of the top-down authoritarian nature of Central Asian politics in Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan through a comparative study of the pro-democratic movements that emerged in the late 1980s. By analysing data from interviews with the cultural elites of the late Soviet perestroika period and data on the indigenous nationalist movements such as Erk, Zheltoksan, Birlik and others, we question why such nationalist movements did not “survive” or emerge as a significant political platform as promised in post-independence Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan, and why they failed to change the political outlook of one party rule or the dominance of one nationalising regime. Furthermore, we analyse how such... (More)

This paper aims to reconstruct widely accepted concepts of the top-down authoritarian nature of Central Asian politics in Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan through a comparative study of the pro-democratic movements that emerged in the late 1980s. By analysing data from interviews with the cultural elites of the late Soviet perestroika period and data on the indigenous nationalist movements such as Erk, Zheltoksan, Birlik and others, we question why such nationalist movements did not “survive” or emerge as a significant political platform as promised in post-independence Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan, and why they failed to change the political outlook of one party rule or the dominance of one nationalising regime. Furthermore, we analyse how such nationalist movements had an opportunity to turn into semi-democratic movements but failed to transform after their agenda (arguably, independence) was achieved, leaving “communists-turned-nationalists” to continue their policies in newly formed countries. Thus, the paper also looks at how these cultural elites eventually contributed to the local “authoritarianism” and lack of plurality in views and identifications.

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organization
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Contribution to journal
publication status
epub
subject
keywords
authoritarianism, Central Asia, Cultural elites, Kazakhstan, nationalising regimes, nationalism, power, Uzbekistan
in
Asian Studies Review
pages
19 pages
external identifiers
  • scopus:85044380700
DOI
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
02e88553-937a-4c03-82a5-708021bb607c
date added to LUP
2018-02-02 13:19:04
date last changed
2018-05-29 11:20:06
@article{02e88553-937a-4c03-82a5-708021bb607c,
  abstract     = {<p>This paper aims to reconstruct widely accepted concepts of the top-down authoritarian nature of Central Asian politics in Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan through a comparative study of the pro-democratic movements that emerged in the late 1980s. By analysing data from interviews with the cultural elites of the late Soviet perestroika period and data on the indigenous nationalist movements such as Erk, Zheltoksan, Birlik and others, we question why such nationalist movements did not “survive” or emerge as a significant political platform as promised in post-independence Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan, and why they failed to change the political outlook of one party rule or the dominance of one nationalising regime. Furthermore, we analyse how such nationalist movements had an opportunity to turn into semi-democratic movements but failed to transform after their agenda (arguably, independence) was achieved, leaving “communists-turned-nationalists” to continue their policies in newly formed countries. Thus, the paper also looks at how these cultural elites eventually contributed to the local “authoritarianism” and lack of plurality in views and identifications.</p>},
  author       = {Kudaibergenova, Diana T. and Shin, Boram},
  keyword      = {authoritarianism,Central Asia,Cultural elites,Kazakhstan,nationalising regimes,nationalism,power,Uzbekistan},
  language     = {eng},
  month        = {03},
  pages        = {1--19},
  series       = {Asian Studies Review},
  title        = {Authors and Authoritarianism in Central Asia : Failed Agency and Nationalising Authoritarianism in Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/},
  year         = {2018},
}