UCA News - Issue 115
The University of Central Asia's (UCA) School of Professional and Continuing Education (SPCE) launched its latest publication, Ancient Monuments of Tien-Shan, representing a significant contribution towards preserving archaeological monuments and the Kyrgyz Republic's history on 28 February and 5 March in Naryn and Bishkek, respectively.
Written by Kubat Tabaldyev, the book is based on twenty years of archeological research in the Naryn and Issyk Kul regions of Kyrgyzstan. It presents evidence of the rich heritage from different historical eras covering the Stone Age, Bronze Era, Early Iron Age and the Middle Ages.
"Since its inception, UCA has been supporting scholars of cultural and historic heritage. The purpose of this publication is to not only advance information about ancient monuments in the Naryn region, but also to promote tourism and increase awareness of Narynians of the need to protect outdoor historical sights," said Dr Bohdan Krawchenko, Director General, UCA.
Ancient Monuments of Tien-Shan was first launched in Naryn on 28 February 2012. Held at UCA's School of Professional and Continuing Education campus in Naryn, the event featured a presentation by Tabaldyev describing the various stages of his research. In addition to excavations, the author collected rich materials on archaeological monuments in Naryn Oblast for his research through interviews with local elders. "The artifacts and spiritual culture of the Kyrgyz are excellent examples of interweaving rich cultural traditions and historical events, which are described in this book," noted Tabaldyev.
A separate launch event held in Bishkek on 5 March 2012 introduced Mr Tabaldyev's work to an audience of more than 110, including members of the diplomatic and donor communities.
Several distinguished local professors commended Mr Tabaldyev for his commitment to exploring and preserving the archaeological assets of Naryn region, including Professor Layli Ukubaeva, Dean of Humanities faculty at the Kyrgyz-Turkish Manas University and Abetekov Asan Kemelovich, Associate Professor of Balasagyn Kyrgyz National University. Mr Ravshan Jeenbekov, Deputy of Jogorku Kenesh, and Mrs. Nurjehan Mawani, Head of the AKDN Representation in the Kyrgyz Republic, also delivered comments during the event.
The Bishkek event also featured a performance by the Tengir Too Folklore Ensemble, whose name derives from the majestic mountain ranges of the Naryn Oblast. Supported by the Aga Khan Music Initiative, the Ensemble was created by the Honoured Artist of the Kyrgyz Republic Nurlanbek Nyshanov.
The launch of Ancient Monuments of Tien-Shan is one of several regional initiatives aimed at preserving historical monuments in Naryn region and actively involving local residents in the process. In Naryn town, many residents are already taking an active part in preserving historical monuments and plan to engage in similar works in the near future. In the Kockhor region of Naryn oblast, staff from the Kara Kungei village school opened a school history museum.
Since 2008, UCA has supported publications by Middle Asian scholars related to cultural heritage, building capacity in research tools, and collaborative projects with partner institutions. Last year, it published a definitive two-volume study on Kyrgyz melodies; Kyrgyz Küüs: Analysis, Thoughts and Opinions (Volumes I-II) and Volumes I, II, and III of The Musical Arts of the Pamirs, a five-volume study on folk music, oral history, and theatre traditions from the Pamir region of Tajikistan, as well as a Herder's Manual in Kyrgyz, Russian and English, to contribute to a positive change in livestock and pasture management in rural areas of the Kyrgyz Republic.