Tajikistan’s Past and Future

On the opposite end of the globe from the United States is a nation tucked away at the northern shores of the Amu Darya river. A nation landlocked with cities that wrestle the mountains. Though it is landlocked, Tajikistan has unlocked its history, honoring its ancient culture, preserving its Sogdian origins, while at the same …

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Culture Beyond Politics

One of the main reasons I chose to live in Petersburg for the summer was to learn about the Russian culture beyond what I read in our textbooks and see through media. Here, I have met new people either by shopping for groceries, trying to eat as much delicious Georgian food as possible, or simply …

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Women’s Political Participation in Georgia

In my orientations preparing for Georgia, gender was a major topic of discussion. I learned that while society is progressing, there are still traditional biases about women and women’s' roles in Georgia. I prepared to be treated differently as a woman in the country. Some of my expectations were met consistently: men, for example, do …

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Which Way Forward?

Tajikistan, a landlocked Central Asian country of 8 million people, receives few mentions in Western media outlets. Yet a cursory tour of the country makes it clear that it has become a battleground for outside powers. Iran, Saudi Arabia, China, Russia and the US have all spent millions on development projects in Tajikistan, visibly reshaping …

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On McDonald’s and Press Freedom

“Putin is so wonderful. You just never hear anything bad about him!” With the major parliamentary elections only a month away, Russia is an ever-intriguing place to stay. Between constant communist party rallies, the petitions and protests of parties failing to qualify for candidacy, and the divide of the Soviet and Federal generations, the streets …

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