Journal article: Canals, Cotton, and the Limits of de-Colonization in Soviet Uzbekistan, 1924–1941

Shared by: Kate Shields / Date: 2021-09-05 06:33:05 / Resources / Pillars: History
Original source: Teichmann, Christian. 2007. “Canals, Cotton, and the Limits of de-Colonization in Soviet Uzbekistan, 1924–1941.” Central Asian Survey 26 (4): 499–519.

Abstract: Why were cotton monoculture and megalomaniac irrigation projects the outcome of the Soviet modernization policies in Uzbekistan? How were economic development and nationality policy related? Which results did policy implementation produce on the ground and within the Uzbek ruling elite? The article argues that these questions can be seen in a new light when interpreting the early Soviet policies in Central Asia as de-colonization. In the Bolshevik view, national ‘liberation’ and economic ‘modernization’ were at the heart of a process to mitigate the consequences of ‘imperialism’ and ‘colonialism’ in the region. On the basis of archival evidence, the article demonstrates how de- colonization worked in Uzbekistan’s irrigation sector which brought together conflicting visions of nationality policy and economic development. Limits quickly became visible as central interference, collectivization, and continuous state violence obstructed the original agenda of de-colonization

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