Uzbek Pictures

by Dafydd on 1/25/2010 · 5 comments

A slide show of ten picuteres from the BBC showing some scenes from Uzbek life. I rather liked them. The authorities thought differently, and the photographer (Umida Akhedova) is now awaiting trial for portraying Uzbek society in a negative light,


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– author of 23 posts on 17_PersonNotFound.

I am a UK citizen & resident with a long standing interest in Central Asia. This probably has something to do with student days, a late night TV show called 'The Silk Road' and a TV with no remote control. I currently work in software and live with my wife & three children.

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{ 5 comments }

ZZ January 25, 2010 at 12:42 pm

Looks like the Uzbek authorities have completely lost their mind. How can an artist be judged for how he or she sees the world? If Umida prefers to see the “negative” sides of Uzbek lives that’s her right to do so. Why, no-one bans the so-called “patriots” of Uzbekistan to film and show the images of modern buildings, statues of Tamerlane, pictures of Nexias etc etc… How sick and how sad to read about this story in the news.

shohmurod January 25, 2010 at 6:48 pm

When I see the government hand in such areas as the arts, I cannot help but to think the Soviet Union has not completely fallen. It is (still) falling. The Communist elite are (still) in power and from time to time we see their old school behavior displayed in some ways. Everything takes time…

The photos are fabulous by the way!

oldschool boy January 26, 2010 at 3:16 am

I think the government was more enraged by her movie where she showed as a young bride was expelled from her newly wed husband’s home for being non-virgin, reportedly an old Uzbek tradition. Or, most probably, she was guilty in some other “crime” like disrespect of some official. You know when some sort of people are given too much power, regardless in USA or Uzbekistan, they would use any mean to get you.

ZZ January 26, 2010 at 6:35 am

True. I realise that a documentary on such a taboo subject would have irritated the authorites. Yet, contrary to what they claim, I don’t think she was calling upon the Uzbek girls not to be virgins, rather she was showing the complexity of the problem and her own view on that. I agree that given the cultural and social specifics of Uzbekistan, it is “better” to be a virgin before marriage, however it is not fair because guys rarely practice such an abstinence themselves. Ideally, it should be recognized that it’s a woman’s right to be/not to be a virgin without fearing a public humiliation like that. But Uzbekistan is just way too traditional to accept this way of thinking.

Metin January 26, 2010 at 8:35 am

I think this case illustrate the functioning democracy in Uzbekistan. No one is being put into jail without reason. Here there is awaiting official trial where she has opportunity to defend herself.
I wonder, whether in your countries you have had similar cases of people being tried for breach of public moral.
P.S. photos in BBC are really fabulous, but story misleads readers: no doubt, she is not being tried for photos posted in BBC.

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