Heavy rain on Friday night and early Saturday afternoon didn’t stop thousands of people from attending the 2016 Lotus World Music Festival in downtown Bloomington this past weekend. The festival, now in its 23rd year, ran from September 15 through September 18. This year, the IAUNRC was proud to sponsor performances by three groups: Söndörgo (Hungary), Aallotar (Finnish-American Folk), and Anda Union (Mongolia). Both Aallotar and Söndörgo gave multiple performances throughout the weekend. Anda Union only performed one set on Saturday evening.
Past Events Highlights
On September 8, 2016, doctoral student Giorgi Papashvili gave a presentation for the Central Eurasian Colloquium titled “The Ethnographic Portrait of the Caucasus around 1900.” His talk focused mostly on paintings and portraits produced during the late 19th century by Georgian artists. He emphasized how outside cultural influences, mainly those from nearby Russia and Iran, played into the human “types” that were depicted in the various pieces.
In mid-April, the IAUNRC brought Karol Taylor to Indiana University to guide students through the federal job application process. With over 28 years of experience in the federal government and eleven in federal hiring, as well as specialized training in career counseling, Karol Taylor was ideal for explaining the ins and outs of searching for federal jobs as well as creating a competitive application.
For the 2015-2016 academic year I received two research grants. The first was a Fulbright U.S. Student Award for research in Kazan, Russia, and the second a Boren Fellowship that has me currently based out of Istanbul, Turkey. Each grant is for six months.
I was selected to be the OVPIA’s candidate for the Fall 2015 Semester at Boğaziçi University. As part of the exchange program, I was allowed to enroll in graduate level courses that would help to facilitate my own research on Ottoman urban and social history. I was particularly excited about taking classes with some of renowned faculty of Boğaziçi’s History Department. Moreover, as a urban historian concerned primarily with changes in the urban fabric of Istanbul, the OVPIA program enabled me to experience the city firsthand.
I applied for a Boren Fellowship in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan because of a persistent feeling that the work that I started there in 2012-3 as a Fulbright Scholar was left undone. When it comes to fieldwork and data collection, there are questions that you just can’t find the answers to in the library—even if it does give you free access to WorldCat and rare collections. My primary research question, which aims to measure the impact of energy insecurity on daily life, hasn’t been answered before.
The Association of Central Eurasian Students (ACES) held its annual conference on Saturday, March 12th at Indiana University. This year marked the 23rd anniversary of the conference and brought together over forty scholars across more than a dozen panels, with the Keynote Speech given by Dr. Manduhai Buyandelger. Through generous support from the IAUNRC and efforts by Dr. Nazif Shahrani the 23rd Annual ACES Conference was able to host a featured performance by world-renown dutar virtuoso, Sirrojiddin Juraev.
by Dilnoza Kadirova
Central Asian people are famous for their hospitality and friendliness, and Uzbekistan is a very good example for this lovely area’s traditions. The main idea behind organizing Uzbek Culture Night was to share Uzbek culture with people in Bloomington enhance the diversity on Indiana University’s campus.
by Amita Vempati
Laden with stickers, scavenger hunt items (which ranged from silk flowers to a teddy bear to an onion), and flashcards so freshly laminated that they were still warm, Uzbek FLTA Dilnoza Kadyrova and I would be ready every Thursday to teach Uzbek to a group of spirited 5-8 year olds. Thanks to the Bridges Program run through IU’s Center for the Study of Global Change and coordinated by Vesna Dimitrieska, four languages were taught across afterschool programs in Bloomington. Uzbek was one of them, and we were assigned to the class at Girls Inc.
On March 10th and 11th IAUNRC Affiliate and Professor of Anthropology at IU-PU Fort Wayne, Dr. Noor Borbieva visited two of St. Louis Community College’s campuses, Florissant and Forest Park. Her visit coincided with International Women’s Day and she gave a talk entitled “Women Spiritual Leaders in Central Asia, Past and Present: Fostering Community, Wielding Authority, Inspiring Devotion.”