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Dushanbe (do͞oshănˈbə, –shänˈ–), city, capital of Tajikistan, W Tajikistan. It is a major industrial and cultural center in a rich agricultural area. Coal, lead, and arsenic are mined nearby. A leading cotton textile center, Dushanbe also produces silk, textile machinery, electrical appliances, clothing, leather goods, tractor parts, and foodstuffs. There is a rail line to Termez, and air links with Moscow and the capitals of the Central Asian Republics. The city served as the headquarters for Ibrahim Bek, a Tajik leader who fought the Bolsheviks. From 1929, when the city became the capital of the Tadzhik SSR, to 1961, it was known as Stalinabad. Dushanbe became the capital of independent Tajikistan in 1991. A university and the Tajik Academy of Sciences are in the city.
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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



(Diushambe until 1929, Stalinabad from 1929 to 1961), a city and capital of the Tadzhik SSSR. Situated in the Gissar Valley, at an elevation of 750-930 m, on both banks of the Dushanbinka River (called the Varzob River in its upper course). Average January temperature, 1°C; average July temperature, 28°C. Population, 388,000 (1971; 6,000 in 1926, 83,000 in 1939, and 227,000 in 1959). Dushanbe has three city raions. A railroad and highway junction, it has an airport.

Dushanbe was built in the years of Soviet power on the site of the kishlak (village) of Diushambe, which numbered several hundred inhabitants before the October Revolution. The kishlak was destroyed by the basmachi (members of counter-revolutionary bands in Middle Asia during the period of consolidation of Soviet power) in 1922, and Soviet power was established there in 1923. Dushanbe became the capital of the Tadzhik ASSR in 1924, (from 1925, a city) and the capital of the Tadzhik SSR in 1929. During the years of socialist construction Dushanbe has become a major industrial and cultural center of the republic.

Economy. Enterprises of the electrical engineering and building materials industry, machine-building and metalworking enterprises, and enterprises of the light and food industries have been constructed under Soviet power. In 1970 the city had a total of 90 enterprises. The most important are the textile, silk, meat-canning, and cement combines; the Dushanbe Agricultural Machinery Plants (Dushanbesel’mash); the Tadzhik Textile Machinery Plant (Tadzhiktekstil’mash); and the cable, household refrigerator, automobile repair, and commercial equipment plants. Many enterprises, especially those of the light and food industries, use local raw materials. Electric power for the city is provided by the Dushanbe-Vakhsh electric power system, which includes the Dushanbe Heat and Electric Power Plant, with a capacity of 226,000 kW-h; the Golovnaia, Perepadnaia, and Central hydroelectric power plants; and the cascade of the Varzob Hydroelectric Power Plants. On Jan. 1, 1971, the housing space of Dushanbe numbered 3,440,000 cu m of usable space (457,000 cu m in 1940).


Architecture. In the years of Soviet power Dushanbe has been transformed from a kishlak with clay huts into a beautiful garden city with a regular network of tree-lined streets (general plans: 1937, architects N. V. Baranov and V. A. Gaikovich, and 1965, architect V. V. Pekarskii and others), parks, and a man-made lake. Lenin Prospect is the city’s main thoroughfare; the main squares of Dushanbe are situated on it: the Privokzal’naia Square with a railroad station (1963, architects L. N. Travianko and V. E. Rusanov) and a monument to V. V. Kuibyshev (1937, the sculptor brothers D. D. Streliaev and N. D. Streliaev); the Aini Square with the Dushanbe Hotel (1964, architect G. Iu. Aizikovich) and the monument to S. Aini (bronze, 1956, sculptor E. A. Tatarinova); the 800th Anniversary of Moscow Square with the S. Aini Theater of Opera and Ballet (1939-46, architects D. I. Bilibin, V. D. Golli, and A. A. lunger); the Lenin Square, the main square of the city, with the Government House of the Tadzhik SSR (1948-49, architects S. L. Anisimov and M. A. Zakharov) and a monument to V. I. Lenin (bronze, 1960, sculptors T. R. Poliakova and A. S. Rabin, architects G. I. Gavrilov and E. I. Kutyrev); and the Putovskii Square with the building housing the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Tadzhiki-stan (1950, architect S. L. Anisimov), the Frunze Square, and the Rokhat Teahouse (1958-59, architects D. D. Gendlin and K. N. Terletskii). Dushanbe has a number of monuments, among them, the monument to the poet A. Rudaki (bronze, 1964, sculptor F. G. Abdurakhmanov and architect M. A. Useinov), the monument to the fighters for the establishment of Soviet power in Tadzhikistan (1966, sculptor G. G. Cherednichenko and architect G. V. Solominov), and the Victory Monument (1970, sculptor G. G. Cherednichenko and architect G. V. Solominov).

Cultural affairs. Dushanbe is the seat of the Academy of Sciences of the Tadzhik SSR (founded in 1951) and 18 scientific research institutes, 13 of which are part of the system of the Academy of Sciences. In the 1970-71 academic year, the five institutions of higher learning—the Tadzhik University and the Medical, Polytechnic, Pedagogical, and Agricultural institutes—had 33,800 students. The 14 specialized secondary schools had 16,600 students; the 12 vocational and technical schools, 4,300 students; and the 97 general education schools, 74,800 students. In 1971 the city numbered 116 preschool institutions with 24,000 children.

Dushanbe has (as of Jan. 1, 1971) 88 libraries with more than 1.2 million books and magazines; the Firdausi State Library of the Tadzhik SSR; 53 clubs; the Bekhzad Republic Museum of History, Local Lore, and Fine Arts; the S. Aini Museum of Literature; the S. Aini Theater of Opera and Ballet; the V. Mayakovsky Russian Dramatic Theater; the A. Lakhuti Dramatic Theater; and 70 film projection units, of which 56 are stationary.

Also in the city are the Irfon and Donish publishing houses, the republic news agency Tadzhik TA, and a television center. In 1970 the press comprised seven republic newspapers, 11 magazines, the city newspaper Vechernii Dushanbe (published since 1968), and 11 factory newspapers.

Public health. In 1971, Dushanbe had 22 hospitals with 5,800 beds (14.4 beds per thousand population), 500 of which were in in-patient departments of eight dispensaries. The medical preventive and public health and antiepidemic institutions employed 2,400 doctors and the scientific research and educational medical institutions, 600 doctors (one doctor per 165 population). The Shaambary and Iavroz resort areas and the resort of Khodzha-Obi-Garm are located near Dushanbe.


Narzibekov, M. Dushanbe—stolitsa Tadzhikistana. [Dushanbe, 1966.]
Gorod Dushanbe k 50-letiiu Velikoi Oktiabr’skoi sotsialisticheskoi revoliutsii. Dushanbe, 1967. (Statistical collection.)
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


the capital of Tajikistan; a cultural centre. Pop.: 551 000 (2005 est.)
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
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