• KGS/USD = 0.01172 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00211 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09391 0%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01172 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00211 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09391 0%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01172 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00211 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09391 0%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01172 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00211 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09391 0%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01172 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00211 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09391 0%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01172 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00211 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09391 0%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01172 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00211 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09391 0%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01172 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00211 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09391 0%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%

Viewing results 1 - 6 of 2

Story of a Statue: Turkmenistan Shapes National Identity

The giant bronze statue of a robed man holding a book stands on the southern outskirts of Turkmenistan’s capital, Ashgabat, and is visible from many parts of the city. Including the granite base, it is more than 80 meters high. The sculptor says the rising sun illuminates the structure at dawn, giving it a hallowed aura. Diplomats and other dignitaries recently assembled for the inauguration of the statue of Magtymguly Pyragy, a revered poet and philosopher who serves today as a state-sponsored symbol of national and cultural identity. Some carried bouquets of flowers as they walked up the steps toward the looming monolith. Later, there were fireworks, a multi-colored light show and a drone display in the sky that formed the image of a quill pen. Led by President Serdar Berdimuhamedov, the ceremony on May 17 marked the 300th anniversary of the official birthday of Pyragy, who is little known outside Central Asia but is vital to a campaign of national cohesion in a country whose brand of personalized state control often seems opaque and eccentric to observers. Pyragy was born in the 18th century in what is today Iran, and is associated with Sufi spiritualism. He wrote about love, family and morality, and also laced his poetry with yearning for Turkmen solidarity at a time of conflict and fragmentation. Today, his image adorns postage stamps and banknotes in Turkmenistan. A theater carries his name. A symphony. A street. A university. People put his verse to songs at festivals. His lines form aphorisms in Turkmen, a Turkic language spoken in parts of Central Asia. Turkmenistan is of interest to foreign powers for its deep energy reserves, but this year its diplomats made an intense push in world capitals to get people interested in something else about the country: Magtymguly Pyragy. They promoted events about the poet in cities including Washington, Paris, Beijing and Seoul. The message was, as the state news agency put it, that Pyragy´s work is “an invaluable asset of all mankind.” Indeed, the park where the giant Pyragy statue stands in Ashgabat also contains much, much smaller statues of writers from other parts of the world, including William Shakespeare, Fyodor Dostoevsky, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe and Rabindranath Tagore. One commentator has even compared Pyragy to German philosopher Immanuel Kant, saying they were born around the same time and had similar ideas. Russian granite was transported in nearly 100 railway cars to Ashgabat for construction of the new Pyragy statue, according to contractor Alexander Petrov. The statue is among the more grandiose monuments in a capital studded with them. Sculptor Saragt Babayev noted that the statue shows Pyragy in a turban, in contrast to an older image of the poet that shows him wearing a peaked Astrakhan hat, which was made of sheep fur and had no religious significance. That image dates to the time when Turkmenistan was part of the Soviet Union and Moscow was cracking down on expressions of Islamic piety. “During the time when the...

Ancient Turkmen City of Anau Declared Cultural Capital of the Turkic World 2024

On March 25th, Rashid Meredov, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Turkmenistan and Sultanbay Raev, Secretary General of the International Organization of Turkic Culture (TURKSOY), attended a ceremony in Ashgabat for the declaration of the nomination of Turkmen city Anau as 'Cultural Capital of the Turkic World 2024'. Coinciding with the 300th anniversary of the birth of Turkmen’s beloved bard, 2024 has also been declared the ‘Year of the Great Poet and Thinker of the Turkic World: Magtymguly Pyragy.’ Revered throughout the country, the 18th century Sufi poet and spiritual teacher, Pyragy, is hailed as the father of Turkmen literature and his legacy persists through a rich ingrained tradition of Turkmen bards or ‘bagshys’ adapting his poetry to song. His image appears on numerous monuments as well as banknotes and The Magtymguly International Prize is awarded annually to distinguished scholars of Turkmen language and literature. A 197ft bronze statue, erected in Ashgabat, will be officially unveiled on June 27th; the date of a national holiday celebrating the poet. According to reports from their meeting, Meredov and Raev emphasized the importance of promoting both Magtymguly Pyragy’s legacy and the cultural significance of the ancient Turkmen city of Anau on various international platforms including those of TURKSOY, UN, and UNESCO.