Shelter and Outbuildings

Traditional housing in Eurasia includes the portable Central Asian yurt and the rather enigmatic Russian dacha. Other forms include the Łemko cottages in Poland and the Russian izba. Additionally, outbuildings, like the Russian banya, can play an outsized role in culture. Finally, elements of housing, such as the yurt’s central tuinduik and its surrounding felt or the large central stoves that heat many traditional Slavic houses can also have significant cultural meaning. Even in areas where these types of housing are no longer used, they remain well known and often part of the nation’s imagery.

Kyrgyz on Kyrgyzstan

What defines being Kyrgyz? Defining something as broad as a nationality or ethnicity is always complicated. I decided to get a view specifically from young Kyrgyz women and interviewed Bigemai, 27 and Aiza, 22 for their thoughts. Bigemai grew up in Bishkek, the oldest of four siblings. She works professionally as a hairdresser and volunteers […]

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