Asel Murzakulova (UCA)
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- Room B16
- Saturday 12 October, 9:00-10:45 (UTC+0)
Author:Aksana Ismailbekova (Leibniz-Zentrum Moderner Orient (ZMO))
Paper long abstract:
Based on fieldwork among Uzbeks in southern Kyrgyzstan from October 2018 to February 2019, this paper focuses on the interplay of localized kinship ideology and practice. Ethnic Uzbeks frequently prefer to marry first cousins, producing local communities tightly bound by inter-marriage. Specifically, I draw on ethnographic materials as well as quantitative results in exploring kinship systems of Uzbeks. I show the importance of mothers for the maintenance and advancement of the households of their daughters, a matrilineal link which contrasts with the literature which describes Central Asian Muslim societies with a unilateral emphasis on patriliny and patriarchy. In term of economic transfers between males, I found a chain from fathers-in-law to sons-in-law and on to the sons-in-law of the latter, for which there is no name in anthropology yet.
The main source of support for a sister's children comes from the mother's brother. The 'Toga' is the closest elder male kinsman and has the same responsibilities for his sister's children as his own. Among Kyrgyz families, the egos, (the father's brothers) are responsible for their brother's children. However, among Uzbeks the Mother's brother's (toga) role is very crucial in supporting the sister's daughter. Uzbeks have a saying that boys have a strong belly (beli bekem), meaning that they are free and allowed to work and earn money. In contrast, a girl is dependent on her husband and his family. The only source of support comes from her mother's relatives - sisters (khola), mother's brother, and maternal grandparents.
The Kinship Network Questionnaire (KNQ) research was conducted in the rural village of Alim-teppe and in urban areas of Osh city in southern Kyrgyzstan. I followed a random sampling technique in collecting KNQ data in both locations. So far we collected 41 KNQ interviews in the two localities. Initial findings show that people variously remember the names of their kin, and their birth and death dates; recall of kin names ranged from 100 to 400 members depending on the age of respondents. Using a genealogical method, I systematically collected information on genealogies.
Authors:Madina Junussova (University of Central Asia)
Mariia Iamshchikova (University of Central Asia)
Paper long abstract:
This paper aims to analyze the main findings of the study on the role that Afghan women have obtained or can play in the economic development of the country. The concept of women's economic empowerment was set in the Afghanistan's policy agenda by the international community and defined as "a condition where women take control and determine the direction of their lives, develop their full potential, make enlightened decisions, and exert positive influence over processes, mechanisms, and decisions that affect their well-being." In this study, we consider women's economic empowerment a critical step in turning towards inclusive economic growth, which contributes to the development of human capital despite gender differences. The study employs a qualitative research approach based on a combination of desk study and fieldwork. The desk study includes the review of available global and local scholarly literature on women's economic empowerment, analysis of the national programs, and legislation adopted to support women's participation in the economic development of Afghanistan. The field study included missions in Kabul, Nangarhar, and Badakhshan Provinces of Afghanistan and consultation with 20 national and local level decision-making actors. The overview of the current legal and security conditions showed that the weakness of the rule of law remains a critical obstacle for Afghan women to receive education, be employed, work, or start a business. Afghan legislators continue to apply informal practice of dispute resolution. Overall underdevelopment of the labour market and private sector in the country creates challenges for both men and women in finding decent work and official employment. The issue of women employability in the Afghan context requires strategic prioritizing and evidence-based decision making and careful thinking not only about how to increase the number of jobs for women, but how to create comfortable and sustainable working places for all including the female population. The assessment of women engaged in entrepreneurial activities showed that women entrepreneurship is a new phenomenon in Afghanistan. The paper highlights the need for rethinking government economic policies with an emphasis on essential components of women's economic empowerment such as security and innovative opportunities for women's participation in national and local economic development.
Author:Diana Mamatova (UN Women )
Paper long abstract:
Borders and border issues have enormous implications for peacebuilding. Peacebuilding does not need to be imposed, but rather supported by cross-border communal engagement to strengthen social cohesion. The paper focuses on the role of women in peacebuilding processes on a grassroots level between cross-border communities in Central Asia's Ferghana Valley. I argue in this paper that women play a limited role in participating in decision making when it comes to preventing, managing and resolving border incidents and conflicts. This is due to patriarchal and traditional social and behavior norms that places men as decision-makers and women as housewives. Unequal gender identities and roles hinder the peacebuilding process on a grassroots level in cross-border communities and this as a result undermines achieving lost lasting stability in the region.
In the most recent border conflict in March 2019 between residents of Ak-Sai village in Kyrgyzstan and Voruh exclave in Tajikistan, all women from Ak-Sai village, for example, were evacuated and men stayed to protect their land and participate in the decision-making process.
A continually growing research base has now recognized the important role of women in peace and security issues to achieve long lasting stability within the communities. Grassroots peacebuilding will be more effective and peace more sustainable in cross-border communities if women are seen as equal decision-makers and leaders and not victims.
The paper relies on secondary resources, including on the results of a nation-wide research on gender perception study in Kyrgyzstan, and on primary data from survey among women in the border communities of Kyrgyzstan.
Author:Asel Murzakulova (UCA)
Paper long abstract:
This paper focuses on local perceptions of 'security' and 'insecurity' in the context of social change in Dostuk village of Kyrgyzstan and Chor village of Tajikistan after the delineation of national borders between two communities in 2014. Between 2013 and 2018, both villages were at the epicenter of the national security projects of their respective governments. Large infrastructure projects were implemented on the village territories, e.g. the construction of a new road, a bridge or border posts. All this infrastructure was built under the mainstream securitization discourse of the Ferghana Valley borderland. The new infrastructure impaired local social life and catalyzed economic insecurity of Dostuk and Chor villages. Based on the findings from recent field research (in-depth interviews and participant observation 2016-2018), I argue that the Dostuk and Chor communities share a similar perception of 'security' which is at odds with the State discourse of 'security'. While the State sees the presence of border guards and posts in borderland villages contributing to the safety of its citizens, the local communities consider border guards as the main reason for the prevailing insecurity. From the perspective of the interviewees 'yntymak' (social harmony), the shared memory is the major source of security. This study contributes to the critical approach in security studies by highlighting the contradictions between local and national security discourses and investigates the broad diapason of reflections on the concepts of national identity, state border, citizenship, patriotism and how they intertwine with human security challenges in the borderlands of the Ferghana Valley.