Cover

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Title Page, Series Page, Copyright, Dedication

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pp. i-vi

Contents

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pp. vii-viii

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Acknowledgments

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pp. ix-xii

First and foremost, I want to thank the townspeople of Bazaar-Korgon for their hospitality, their friendship, and their goodwill. I owe much to their patience, to their understanding, and to their willingness to let me write about their lives and their town. In particular I would like to thank Alisher, Salima, and their...

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Note on Transliteration and Translation

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pp. xiii-xiv

All translations from Kyrgyz and Uzbek are my own. I have used the American Library Association–Library of Congress (ALA-LC) System for the transliteration of Russian words and the 1979 romanization system developed by the US Board on Geographic Names and the Permanent Committee on Geographical...

Map

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pp. xv-2

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Introduction

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pp. 3-32

The main roadway leading to Bazaar-Korgon, Kyrgyzstan, follows a most unflattering route. Capitalism’s failures flash by the window first—a defunct joint venture cotton-processing plant to the right, to the left a row of houses, their crumbling accouterments exposing shoddy quality. Next, the decay of Soviet...

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1. On Being Muslim in Bazaar-Korgon

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pp. 33-59

The townscape of Bazaar-Korgon is low and sprawling. Walking, it takes at least an hour and a half to traverse the town. In most quarters earthen walls line dusty streets, creating a landscape that, to the unfamiliar eye, becomes a maze of identical roads. The glare of a midday summer sun blinds those who dare venture out...

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2. Listening to the Wedding Speaker

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pp. 60-78

Autumn 2003 was a particularly busy wedding season in Bazaar-Korgon. The fresh fruits and vegetables needed for wedding parties were plentiful and at the lowest prices of the year. Cash crops had just been harvested, the sale of which provided the funds needed to finance the weddings. The number of weddings...

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3. Living and Learning Islam

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pp. 79-107

The Friday mosque of Bazaar-Korgon rayon officially opened in the year 2000. The project, which took six years to complete, was led by Tajideen Satvoldiev, the first head imam of the rayon (rayondun imam-khatiby) in the post-Soviet period. Teacher of many of the young generation of Islamic authorities and guide to the...

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4. Mukadas’s Struggle

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pp. 108-130

In the autumn of 2003, after protracted consideration, Mukadas Kadirova, age twenty-five, altered her mode of public dress. She changed the way she fastened her headscarf, pinning it securely under her chin so that it completely covered her hair and neck. She no longer bared her arms, and she started wearing skirts...

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5. The Propriety of Mosques

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pp. 131-150

In the telephone office an operator sits behind a switchboard plugging and unplugging color-coded wires. Discarded theater seats lining the walls of the dark room, not bolted to the floor of their new location, creak and rock with the weight of a new occupant. The operator shouts a number. A man jumps up...

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6. Watching Clone

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pp. 151-170

Farida, Saodat, and Dilafruz were gathered around the television talking while commercials played. Suddenly, one sister hushed the others and drew their attention to the images on the screen. The pictures were of beautifully dressed Muslim women, swirling strands of DNA, and images from Brazil and Morocco. It was...

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Conclusion

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pp. 171-184

The five mosques that were built in Bazaar-Korgon during the late 1980s would be difficult for most outsiders to find today. It is not that they are falling apart or are in disrepair. They are simply small neighborhood mosques, lacking much decoration, unremarkable in size and location. They are set between houses on...

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Appendix: Notes on Fieldwork

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pp. 185-188

This book is based on fourteen months of anthropological fieldwork conducted in Kyrgyzstan in 2003 and 2004. Eleven months were spent in the town of Bazaar-Korgon and three months in the capital, Bishkek. This period of formal fieldwork was supported by two years of prior residence in Bazaar-Korgon...

Notes

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pp. 189-202

References

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pp. 203-222

Index

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pp. 223-232