Encyclopedia of Women & Islamic Cultures

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Representations: Film: Central Asia
(1,341 words)

Mirroring the myriad confused cultural endeavors surfacing since the fall of the Soviet Union, filmic images of Central Asian women defy easy categorization. The mother figure, the prostitute, and the veiled recluse coexist in discord as Central Asian filmmakers search for their own historical and cultural identities between Islam and post-socialist postmodernism.

Typical of Soviet attitudes toward equal gender participation in the workforce, efforts were made during the burgeoning Central Asian film industry of the 1960s and 1970s to convey modernity by depicting Central Asian women in Western dress and in the new urban spaces of the region. However, cinematic images of a woman's self-reliance were less common than a persistent view of submission and of loyalty for Central Asian women that undermined the Soviet notion of progress as well as efforts to incorporate women into the workplace. Films, such as Competition (Bolat Mansurov, 1964), My Nam…

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Rouland, Michael, “Representations: Film: Central Asia”, in: Encyclopedia of Women & Islamic Cultures, General Editor Suad Joseph. Consulted online on 17 September 2019 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/1872-5309_ewic_EWICCOM_0625b>
First published online: 2009

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