Central Asia Cultures

With Us, The World Is More Interesting...

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Response send: Lorenza Vidris, Program Manager at Randolph Library
The Program Journey on the Silk Road given by Zulya Rajabova was a multi-dimensional depiction of Central Asia, both past and present. Her personalized and informative presentation drew a large crowd and kept attention of everyone. She set up a museum-like backdrop complete with colorful posters and exquisite handmade items of all kinds. Her preparation as well as her evident attention to detail elevated this program to a higher level and something I would highly recommend.

Response send: Michael Yamashita - National Geographic Photographer
"Zulya Rajabova is the most enthusiastic presenter of Uzbekistan history and culture that I have ever encountered."
www.michaelyamashita.com

Response send: Rafis Abazov
Rafis Abazov - The author of "Culture and Customs of the Central Asia Republics" , Columbia University

Your presentation about Uzbekistan and its cultural heritage was very interesting and informative. It generated a lot of interest among Columbia University students and lively discussion. Thank you for the wonderful presentation
Rafis Abazov
Adjunct Assistant Professor
Harriman Institute,

Response send: Berit Stover, Bragg School Leadership Team, NJ
Dear Zulya,
On behalf of The Chester Bragg School and its students, thank you for introducing Uzbekistan as part of our “Around The World in Three Days” program. We were delighted to feature you at one of our 5th grade assemblies and work with you to create an interesting and highly visual program. Not only did the students travel back in time along the ancient Silk Road to get a glimpse of Uzbekistan’s soaring architecture, rich history and hospitable peoples; we were also able to recreate a bridal tea ceremony to appreciate the tremendous traditions of its people. The costumes, music and narrative that you provided really brought this ‘foreign’ and remote world to life!
We live in a truly global community and it is critical that our young generation gain greater insight and appreciation of the diversity of cultures that surround them. Central Asia is not usually an area which has traditionally been studied in our American children’s education – especially in the early grades. Yet, this region is rich in history dating back to the second century BC. The Silk Road which connected Europe and Asia, played a critical role in shaping who we are today. With its network of trading routes, Uzbekistan and Central Asia was an integral part of the vibrant exchange of goods, ideas, science and culture. In better understanding the past, our children will gain a unique appreciation for this region and its gifts. And in that, they will be able to better able to take lessons learned from history in developing new ideas to address complex issues today!
The idea of The Silk Road is very similar to that of the Internet Highway. They both are a means of sharing across diverse communities and breaking down traditional nation state borders. Similar to the times of The Silk Road, they transcend communities bringing them closer together and benefiting from a diverse exchange of ideas and goods. This is relevant today. In better understanding the dynamics then, may help provide the wisdom and insight in how our children navigate our global society to bring enlightenment and real solutions in the 21st century. In giving our children exposure to this foreign land, new worlds are opened and mysteries and misunderstandings are understood. And with that, we will all benefit.
Thank you again for your time and sharing your personal experiences in this important international exchange.
With kind regards,
Berit Stover
Bragg School Leadership Team
“Academic Issues & Cultural Awareness” Committee
Chester, NJ 07930

Response send: EDY TOUSSAINT
UZBEKISTAN PRESENTATION BY ZULYA RAJABOVA MOSS, 1/17/2008:

Didn’t know what to expect – only that we would be learning about a foreign country somewhere in Asia that might be related to Russia somehow.
I was completely captivated by the charming young lady who enthusiastically and with much openness described many aspects of a land from far away whose traditions may have a relationship to some of our own ancestors’ cultures way back before they ever considered coming to start new lives in America.
The dignity, the reserved quality reminds me of the propriety related to our grandparents’ cultures and societies. But this is today and Uzbekistan observes these rules of etiquette, tradition and closeness of the family while we in metropolitan America are immersed in a world of isolative ipods and GPS talking cars. Much can be learned, appreciated and maybe followed by taking a good look at a special land and culture that respects its’ elders and family traditions and considers marriage a bond that is forever. That is so because it is a carefully chosen match, and the family is utmost in “arranging” it in every sense of the word. They want to be sure. Uzbekistan has a low divorce rate.
Traditions such as exquisite embroidery are carried on by mothers and daughters, and the results are phenomenal works of handicraft art in silk, velvet and golden thread whose details are symbolic of various aspects of family and culture. Each pattern carries special meanings. The artwork is of timeless beauty as are the charming people of this now independent land modestly enjoying the freedoms that come with that status for seventeen years now.
Learn more about this land, its’ refreshing traditions and its’ culture as well as its’ entrancing music and dance by having Ms. Zulya Rajabova Moss guide you through the historical and societal wonders of an ancient land newly reborn.

Edy Toussaint, a fan
edytoussaint@juno.com

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