Almaty Fashion Week

by Nathan Hamm on 11/28/2006 · 7 comments

Fashion Week just wrapped up in Almaty. There are, sadly, far fewer absurd creations like last year’s appearing at places like Yahoo News. (Still, none of it holds a candle to Oscar de la Renta’s Uzbek-influenced Fall 2005 collection.)

There were some noticeable strange sights such as the following face covering…


…or the crying baby as accessory…


The New York Times has a more serious report on fashion week that mentions efforts to promote the purchase of local fashion.

“Our own designers are making stylish high-quality clothes,” said Anna Kuzembayeva, a producer of the Kazakh collections. “Louis Vuitton is boring to us already, but ‘Made in Kazakhstan’ is sounding very chic.”

KZ Blog has comments on the article.

As the Times mentions, Kazakh fashion was also recently showcased in New York. New York Magazine has a brief report on the show that includes comments from Tim Gunn of Project Runway.

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– author of 2991 posts on 17_PersonNotFound.

Nathan is the founder and Principal Analyst for Registan, which he launched in 2003. He was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Uzbekistan 2000-2001 and received his MA in Central Asian Studies from the University of Washington in 2007. Since 2007, he has worked full-time as an analyst, consulting with private and government clients on Central Asian affairs, specializing in how socio-cultural and political factors shape risks and opportunities and how organizations can adjust their strategic and operational plans to account for these variables. More information on Registan's services can be found here, and Nathan can be contacted via Twitter or email.

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Nick November 29, 2006 at 6:51 am

Was Bruno there?

Nick November 30, 2006 at 9:18 am

Obviously, I mean this Bruno

Kyrgyz Kid December 3, 2006 at 1:43 am

Arthur Koestler has argued that the vast majority of present day Jews (mostly Ashkenazi) are not actually Semitic but originally of Khazar origin – see his book The Thirteenth Tribe and also The Jews of Khazaria.

While some researchers claim DNA testing doesn’t strongly support a major Khazar contribution, others believe that modern Jews are essentially non-Semitic with genetic input from a large number of international sources, including Khazars…so the jury’s still out.

Because of the conflict with traditional Jewish racial claims this field of research can be controversial and sensitive.

Sacha Cohen (Bruno) would be aware of the Khazar connection and the controversy.

Kyrgyz Kid December 3, 2006 at 1:52 am

Mr Sasha Cohen might have full rights to boast of Kazakh origin and Turkic-Mongolian Heritage!
Most modern day Jews are the descendants of Khazars, Mongolian-Turkic Nation.

The Ashkenazi Levites who carry R1a1 are most reasonably explained as having descended from the Khazar Turks, who lived in the northern Caucasus and Black Sea region and converted to Judaism in the 9th Century. Exactly how their descendants obtained hereditary Levite status is unclear and controversial, but it happened. Unlike the situation with the Cohanim, there is no modal haplotype or haplogroup that encompasses Levites as a whole.

Nathan December 3, 2006 at 10:12 am

Could you please keep this confined to the other post rather than making every single one an argument about Khazar ancestry? (That’s not really a request…)

I think you’re missing the point though. No one’s saying that Ashkenazim couldn’t have Khazar ancestry. What people are saying, including the authors of the above report, is that there is no evidence for the claim that they are the Khazars or that Khazar ancestry makes up a large part of their ancestry.

Kyrgyz Kid (Borat) December 4, 2006 at 8:47 pm

New fashion ideas for Kazakhstan/Almaty

Borat (Kazakh journalist) appears to be wearing pubic hair on his head, by the look of it, or is he not? Should this be becoming a brand new worldwide sexy trend?

About Khazars/Kazakhs:

Dr. Ariella Oppenheim, professor of genetics at Hebrew University in israel, and five research colleagues reported in the American Journal of Human Genetics (November 2001) that jews are closely related in DNA to Iraqis, Kurds, Turks, and Armenians. Meanwhile, Sephardic, (Middle East jews) differ from European jews (Ashkenazi), many of whom were found to be of Khazar (Turkic Kazakh) stock.

Nathan December 4, 2006 at 10:21 pm

This is warning two. Please refrain from trolling. It’s getting tiresome and you’re consistently misrepresenting others’ work. What I am about to say is the final word on it unless I happen to post on the topic at some point in the future.

The latest study you cite finds that 12.7% of the Ashkenazim are paternal descendants of either East Europeans or Khazars. Most descend from Middle Eastern populations. It’s a stretch to say that this makes European Jews Khazars.

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