Tadzhik Soviet Socialist Republic

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Tadzhik Soviet Socialist Republic



see TajikistanTajikistan
, officially Republic of Tajikistan, republic (2015 est. pop. 8,192,000), 55,251 sq mi (143,100 sq km), central Asia. It borders on China in the east, Afghanistan in the south, Kyrgyzstan in the north, and Uzbekistan in the west and northwest.
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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Tadzhik Soviet Socialist Republic


(Respublikai Sovetii Sotsialistii Todzhikiston), Tadzhikistan.

The Tadzhik Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic, created on Oct. 14, 1924, as part of the Uzbek SSR, was reorganized as the Tadzhik SSR on Oct. 16,1929, and joined the USSR on December 5 of that year. Located in southeastern Middle Asia, the Tadzhik SSR is bounded by the Uzbek and Kirghiz SSR’s on the west and north, by China on the east, and by Afghanistan on the south. Area, 143,100 sq km. Population, 3,387,000 (Jan. 1,1975, estimate). The capital is Dushanbe.

The republic includes two administrative oblasts and one autonomous oblast and is divided into 41 raions, of which 15 are under republic jurisdiction (see Table 1). There are 18 cities and 47 urban-type settlements.

A socialist state of all people expressing aspirations of all workers, peasants, and intelligentsia irrespective of nationality, the Tadzhik SSR is a Union soviet socialist republic within the USSR. Its present constitution was adopted on Apr. 14,1978, by the Extraordinary Eighth Session of the Supreme Soviets of the Tadzhik SSR of the ninth convocation. The highest state body is the unicameral Supreme Soviet of the Tadzhik SSR, which comprises 350 deputies elected every five years and representing precincts equal in terms of population. Between sessions of the Supreme Soviet, the highest state body is the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet. The Supreme Soviet forms the government of the republic—the Council of Ministers—and enacts the laws of the Tadzhik SSR. The local governing bodies in the oblasts, autonomous oblasts, raions, cities, city districts, settlements, and kishlaki (villages) are the respective soviets of people’s deputies, elected by the population for two-and-a-half-year terms. Tadzhikistan is represented by 32 deputies in the Soviet of Nationalities of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR.

The highest judicial body of Tadzhikistan is the Supreme Court of the republic, elected by the republic’s Supreme Soviet for a five-year term. The court is divided into a civil and a criminal section, but it also functions as a plenum. A court presidium is also formed. The procurator of the Tadzhik SSR is appointed for a five-year term by the procurator-general of the USSR.

Tadzhikistan is a mountainous land. About 93 percent of its territory is occupied by the Tien-Shan, Gissar-Alai (sometimes included in the Tien-Shan), and Pamir mountain systems. Almost half of the republic lies at elevations of more than 3,000 m. Flat areas are found only in the broader sections of river valleys and in intermontane basins.

Topography. In the extreme north stretch two mountain ranges belonging to the Tien-Shan system: the Kurama Range, rising to 3,769 m on Mount Boboiob, and the Mogoltau Mountains, whose maximum elevation is 1,624 m. Between the Kurama and Mogoltau ranges in the north and the Turkestan Range in the south lies the narrow western part of the Fergana Valley, linked by a narrow pass with the Golodnaia Steppe, whose southeastern part lies in Tadzhikistan.

Central Tadzhikistan is occupied by the Gissar-Alai system, a great virgation of mountain ranges that begins in the east with the Alai Range, whose western edge lies within Tadzhikistan. Stretching latitudinally and sublatitudinally, the Turkestan Range (rising to 5,509 m at Piramidal’nyi Peak), the Zeravshan Range (rising to 5,489 m at Mount Chimtarga), and the Gissar Range branch out from the Alai Range, whose highest peak is 5,539 m. The Karategin Range branches off from the Gissar Range. Alpine landforms are characteristic of watershed summits, and the main eastern ranges are covered with perpetual snow and glaciers. The Zeravshan River Valley lies between the Turkestan and Zeravshan ranges.

Southwestern Tadzhikistan, the area south of the Gissar-Alai and west of the Pamirs, is dissected by the Dzhilantau, Sarsariak, Tereklitau, Karatau, and Aktau ranges, which converge and reach their maximum elevation, 2,300 m, in the northeast. From here the ranges fan out to the southwest, gradually descending toward the flat expanses of the Piandzh (Panj) and Amu Darya terraces. Between the ranges there are broad valleys, the Gissar, Vakhsh, and Nizhnekafirnigan, lying at elevations ranging from 300–400 m to 1,200 m.

Eastern Tadzhikistan is located within the Pamirs, whose highest points are Communism Peak (7,495 m) in the Akademiia Nauk Range and Lenin Peak (7,134 m) in the Zaalai (Transalai) Range. The Pamirs are divided into an eastern and a western region, according to the terrain. The western Pamirs have narrow mountain ranges alternating with deep, narrow canyons. The piedmont areas lie at elevations of 1,700–1,800 m, and the peaks

Table 1. Administrative-territorial division of the Tadzhik SSR (as of Jan. 1,1975)
 Area (sq km)PopulationNumber of raionsNumber of citiesNumber of urban-type settlementsAdministrative center
Gorno-Badakhshan Autonomous Oblast ...............63,70 0112,00061Khorog
KuliabOblast ...............12,90 0432,000826Kuliab
Leninabad Oblast ...............26,1001,088,00012920Leninabad
Raions under republic jurisdiction ...............40,40 01,755,00015621

rise to 6,000 m or more. The eastern Pamirs are dominated by vast basins and broad river valleys, lying between 3,700 m and 4,200 m. Above them soar mountain ranges with comparatively smooth outlines and relative elevations of up to 1,000–1,500 m. The basins and valleys have an accumulative-glacial topography and alluvial-proluvial debris cones.


Geological structure and minerals. In Tadzhikistan there are folded structures of the Middle and Southern Tien-Shan and the Pamirs, as well as two intermontane basins, the Tadzhik and Fergana depressions.

Represented by the Kurama zone, which was formed by Caledonian and Hercynian tectonic movements, the Middle Tien-Shan has the character of a Paleozoic median mass. The Kurama zone is composed of Lower Paleozoic schists, carbonaceous-terrigenous rocks dating from the Middle Devonian to the Lower Carboniferous, Upper Paleozoic volcanic rocks, and pre-Devonian and Upper Paleozoic granitoids. In the Hercynian structure of the Southern Tien-Shan and Gissar-Alai, structural zones (Gissar-Karategin, Zeravshan-Gissar, Turkestan-Alai) alternate with various kinds of Paleozoic cross sections. Some geologists assert the primacy of the zonation and the allochthonous occurrence of nappes with various types of cross sections thrust over in the Middle Carboniferous. Within all the zones, platform-type deposits were formed during the Mesozoic and Cenozoic. Dislocated during Alpide movements, the deposits form the modern topography of the Gissar-Alai.

The Tadzhik and Fergana depressions developed on the site of Mesozoic-Paleogene platform downwarps. They are composed of three rock complexes: the lower one consists of Paleozoic geosynclinal formations; the middle one, of platform continental and lagoon deposits of the Jurassic-Middle Paleogene; and the upper, of Oligocene-Anthropogene molasse. In the Pliocene-Anthropogene, the Mesozoic and Cenozoic deposits were dislocated.

The Pamirs consist of arc-shaped structural zones divided by overthrusts. The outer zone is composed of lagoon-marine deposits of the Upper Permian-Paleogene and red Neogene rocks, dislocated and thrust in Oligocene-Pliocene times on Tien-Shan structures. The northern Pamirs consist of Precambrian and Middle and Upper Paleozoic rocks, dislocated and breached by granitoids between the Triassic and Middle Jurassic. The central Pamirs have a nappe structure. The autochthon is composed of Precambrian rocks, a thick stratum from the Middle Paleozoic, and thin deposits from the Carboniferous, Triassic, and Jurassic. The allochthon consists of terrigenous-carbonaceous formations from the Paleozoic, Cretaceous, and Paleogene, as well as red Oligocene and Neogene rocks with lava horizons. In the southeastern Pamirs there are thick terrigenous deposits from the Permian and Triassic, carbonaceous deposits of the Jurassic, conglomerates and effusives of the Cretaceous and Paleogene, red rocks of the Oligocene and Miocene, and Upper Cretaceous granitoids, dislocated by overthrusts and faults. The southwestern Pamirs are composed of schists. The territory of Tadzhikistan has a high seismicity.

The republic is rich in mineral resources. The Pamirs and the Gissar-Alai contain deposits of antimony, mercury, arsenic, boron, piezoelectric quartz, rock crystal, optical fluorite, Iceland spar, lazurite, spinel, placer gold, and wolfram ores. In the Kurama zone are found complex ores, rare-earth metals (Karamazor), piezooptical raw material, scheelite, and coal. The Tadzhik and Fergana depressions are a source of oil, gas, coal, oil shale, rock salt, and building materials. Tadzhikistan also has numerous mineral springs, associated with fracture zones, including hot, Narzan, and in some places radioactive waters.


Climate. The republic has a continental climate, with substantial daily and seasonal fluctuations in air temperature; there is low humidity and little cloudiness or precipitation. There are 2,100–3,165 hours of sunshine each year. The complexity of the terrain and the large variations in elevation cause climatic differences between the various regions and altitudinal climatic zonality. The average January temperature ranges from 2°- – 2°C in the valleys and foothills of the southwest and north to – 20°C or below in the Pamirs, where the absolute minimum reaches –63°C (at Bulunkul’). The average July temperature varies from 30°C in the low valleys of the southwest to 0°C or below in the Pamirs. An absolute maximum of 48°C has been recorded at Nizhnii Piandzh.

Moisture is brought for the most part by northwesterly, westerly, and southwesterly air masses. The southern slopes of the Gissar Range, which face the moist air streams, receive as much as 1,600 mm of precipitation. There is very little precipitation on the lower plains (Aivadzh, 150 mm; Kanibadam, 100 mm) and in mountain valleys and basins shut off from the moist winds (Iskanderkul’, 258 mm). The eastern Pamirs (Karakul’, 72 mm) receive the least precipitation. The maximum precipitation falls in March and April everywhere except in the eastern Pamirs, which have a July and August maximum. The frost-free period lasts 230 days in the valleys of northern Tadzhikistan, 230–240 days in southwestern Tadzhikistan, 180 days in the valleys of the Gissar-Alai and the western Pamirs, and 60 days in the eastern Pamirs. In summer, mountain-valley winds prevail in nearly all the mountainous areas. The dry hot garmsil’ blows in the Fergana Valley in summer and autumn. The desiccating southwesterly afganets is characteristic of southern Tadzhikistan.

Glaciation. In the Gissar-Alai the snow line is located at elevations of 3,800 m in the west and southwest and at 4,200–4,400 m in the northeast; in the Pamirs it ranges from 4,000 m in the northwest to 5,200 m in the east. A total of 8,470 sq km are covered by glaciers, chiefly of the mountain-valley type. Some of the largest glaciers are in the northern and western Pamirs: Fedchenko (length, 77 km; area, 907 sq km), Grumm-Grzhimailo (36.7 km, 160 sq km), Bivachnyi (27.8 km, 197 sq km), Garmo (27.5 km, 153.3 sq km), Bol’shoi Saukdara (25.2 km, 69.2 sq km), Sugran (24.2 km, 48 sq km), Geograficheskoe Obshchestvo (21.5 km, 81.8 sq km), and Gando (22.5 km, 55 sq km). The largest glacier in the Gissar-Alai is the Zeravshan glacier, which is 25 km long and covers an area of 41 sq km.

Rivers and lakes. The river system is uneven, with the greatest density occurring in mountainous regions; the plains of the north and southwest have the fewest number of rivers. Almost all the rivers belong to the basins of the Amu Darya, Syr Darya, and Zeravshan. The only exceptions are the small Karadzhilga, Akdzhilga, and Muzkol rivers in the eastern Pamirs, which carry their waters into Lake Karakul’, which has no outlet, and into the Markansu River, which belongs to the Tarim River basin.

Occupying three-fourths of the republic’s area, the Amu Darya basin includes the Piandzh River (with its tributaries, the Gunt, Bartang, Iazgulem, Vanch, and Kyzylsu), the Vakhsh River (called the Surkhob in its upper reaches, prior to its confluence with the Obikhingou), and the Kafirnigan River, all of which feed the Amu Darya. The rivers that run off the northern slope of the Turkestan Range—the Isfara, Khodzhabakirgan, Karasu, and Aksu—belong to the basin of the Syr Darya, which flows for 195 km across northern Tadzhikistan. The upper course of the Zeravshan, with its tributaries, the Fandar’ia, Kshtut, and Magian, is located in Tadzhikistan; its basin occupies nearly one-tenth of the republic’s area.

Most of the rivers, which originate in the high mountains, are fed by glaciers and snow. The rivers fed chiefly by glaciers have a maximum discharge in July and August; those fed chiefly by snow have a maximum discharge in May and June. The rivers that rise in the middle elevations or lower are fed predominantly by snow-melt, rain, and groundwater and have their greatest discharge from March to May. The rivers are used for irrigation and to generate hydroelectric energy. Tadzhikistan ranks second in the Soviet Union, after the RSFSR, in terms of absolute reserves of hydroelectric power. The republic’s 511 known rivers (those flowing for more than 10 km) have a hydroelectric potential of 32.6 million kilowatts.

Most of the republic’s lakes are in the Pamirs and the Gissar-Alai Mountains; Lake Karakul’ is the largest lake. Lakes Sarez-skoe and Iashil’kul’ were formed as a result of mountain landslides. One of the most beautiful moraine-dammed lakes is Iskanderkul’ in the Gissar Range. There are also large artificial lakes: the Kairakkum Reservoir, also known as the Tadzhik Sea, the Nurek Reservoir, and the Farkhad Reservoir.

Soil. Sierozems are widely found on the plains and in the low mountains of the southwest and north. Light-colored sierozems with a low humus content (1–1.5 percent) are well developed to elevations of 300–600 m, and ordinary sierozems with a humus content of 1.5–2 percent occur at elevations of 600–900 m. The upper belt of foothills and the slopes lying between 900 and 1,500–1,900 m are covered with dark sierozems having a humus content of 2.5–4 percent. Since the introduction of irrigation, cotton and other crops have been grown on the sierozems.

The middle belt of mountains (1,600–2,800 m) has mountain cinnamon-colored soils. In the north and in the Gissar-Alai, sierozems give way to light cinnamon-colored soils. In the more humid south, sierozems give way to cinnamon-colored calcareous soils and, higher up, to typical cinnamon-colored soils. There are light cinnamon-colored soils in the valleys of the western Pamirs. In the upper mountain belt, above 2,800 m, there are alpine meadow-steppe, steppe, and desert-steppe soils. The eastern Pamirs have alpine desert soils, although alpine meadow-bog permafrost soils, sometimes saline, are encountered on lower river terraces.

Flora. More than 5,000 species of higher plants have been identified in Tadzhikistan. The vegetative cover consists chiefly of grasses and subshrubs, with trees and shrubs occupying only 4 percent of the area. Altitudinal zonation is reflected in the distribution of flora. The northern and extreme southwestern parts of Tadzhikistan, lying at elevations of up to 500 m, belong to the desert zone. Here, the vegetation consists of subshrub wormwood and halophytes. In the floodplains of the lower courses of the Vakhsh, Piandzh, Kafirnigan, and Kyzylsu rivers grow gallery forests of the poplars Populus diversifolia and Populus pruinosa, oleasters, reeds, and plume grass (Erianthus). At elevations of 500–700 m, the flora is ephemeroid, with a predominance of low sedge, bulbous meadow grass, and various ephemers. Higher up, at elevations of 700–900 m, the foothills are carpeted with tall-grass vegetation, also ephemeroid, consisting of quack grass (Agropyron intermedium) and bulbous barley (Hordeum bulbosum).

The middle-altitude mountains, extending from 1,200 m to 1,800 m or from 2,300 m to 2,800 m, are covered with trees and shrubs, of which there are more than 150 species in Tadzhikistan. Nearly half of the mountain forests consist of junipers. The main tracts are in the Turkestan Range, but juniper forests also occur in the Kurama, Zeravshan, and Gissar ranges and on the upper slopes of the mountains of southwestern Tadzhikistan. The moist southern slopes of the Gissar Range and the western sections of the Peter the First and Darvazskii ranges have broad-leaved forests of walnuts, Turkestan maples (Acer turkestanicum), oriental plane trees, Exochorda, wild apple trees (Malus siewersii), and the cherry plum Prunus divaricata, with an admixture of rosariums and other shrubs. In the foothills of the Zeravshan, Gissar, Peter the First, and Darvazskii ranges and in southwestern Tadzhikistan are found xerophytic open woodlands of pistachio, Bukhara almond (Amygolalus bucharica), hackberry, tanner’s sumac, and Judas trees (Cercis siliquastrum). In the Pamirs, trees are occasionally encountered only in the west, along river valleys; the main species are willows, poplars, and sea buckthorn (Hippophaë).

In the high-mountain zone (above 2,400–2,800 m), there are alpine meadows, meadow steppes, steppes, and desert steppes, depending on the amount of moisture. The meadows are covered with grasses and other herbs. Xerophytic grasses, fescue, meadow grass, and feather grass are characteristic of the steppes. In the eastern Pamirs, there are winter-fat and wormwood deserts and cushion-plant formations.

Many medicinal, tanning, dyeing, essential-oil, and fruit-bearing plants grow in Tadzhikistan. The areas with ephemeroid vegetation are used as fall and winter pastures. Alpine meadows and steppes serve as summer pastures, and the deserts of the eastern Pamirs are also useful as winter pastures.

Fauna. The fauna of Tadzhikistan includes 81 species of mammals, 365 species of birds, 49 species of reptiles, and 7,000 to 8,000 species of insects. The plains in the lower elevation are inhabited by such reptiles as desert monitors, cobras, saw-scaled vipers (Echis carinatus), Egyptian sand boas (Eryx jaculus), and tortoises; among birds are the crested lark, saxaul sparrow, lesser kestrel, Houbara bustard (Otis undulata), and Egyptian vulture. Common rodents of the plains include porcupines, susliks, gerbils, jerboas, and hamsters. The goitered gazelle is encountered in the flat open spaces of the southwest, and markhors and leopards are found in the foothills. The more diverse fauna of the gallery forests includes Bukhara deer (Cervus bactrianus), jungle cats, jackals, leopards, badgers, wild boars, pheasants, quail, and Levantine vipers.

The mountain forests and open woodlands are inhabited by field mice, juniper voles (Microtus carrutheris), tree dormice (Dryomis nitedula), Turkestan rats (Rattus turkestanicus), marten, bears, badgers, weasels, ermine, lynx, leopards, wolves, ibex, partridges, ringdoves, and rufous turtledoves (Streptopelia orientalis); reptiles include the Himalayan agama (Agama himalayensis) and the pit viper (Ancistrodon halys). In the high mountains live Siberian ibex, argali (Ovis ammon), snow leopards, and various birds, including the Himalayan snowcock (Tetraogallus himalayensis), the Tibetan snowcock (Tetraogallus tibetanus), Pallas’s sandgrouse, the chukar partridge, the vulture Gyps fulvus himalayensis, the bearded vulture, the golden eagle, and the griffon vulture. Common alpine rodents are the Alpine marmot (Marmota marmota), Pamir vole (Microtus juldaschi), red pika (Ochotonidae rubila), Royle’s pika (Ochotonidae macrotis), and Royle’s high-mountain vole (Alticola roylei). Some 40 species of fish have been identified in the rivers and lakes of Tadzhikistan (trout, marinka [Schizolhorax], carp, Aspius aspius, bream), ten of which are commercially important. Game animals and birds include the wild boar, argali, bear, long-tailed marmot, cape hare, chukar partridge, Bonham’s partridge (Ammoperdix griseoguliaris), pheasant, ringdove, snowcock, quail, and Tibetan sandgrouse (Syrrhaptes tibetanus). The hunting of some species is restricted. Coypus have been acclimatized in the floodplains of the lower reaches of the Vakhsh.

Preserves. Two preserves—Tigrovaia Balka and Ramit—and 13 wildlife sanctuaries have been established at various elevations for the protection of fauna and flora. Also important for conservation are the botanical gardens in Dushanbe, in Leninabad, and near Khorog, the Varzob Mountain Botanical Station (Kandara Gorge), and the Pamir Biological Station (Chechekty).

Natural regions. Northern Tadzhikistan includes the western Fergana Valley and part of the Golodnaia Steppe, as well as the slopes of the Kurama and Turkestan ranges that face the valley and steppe. The plains have a man-made landscape, with patches of desert and low-grass semidesert vegetation. In the foothills tracts of cultivated land are found in the wormwood deserts and areas with tall-grass ephemeroids. In the middle-altitude mountains, the predominant landscape is that of xerophytic open woodlands alternating with steppe areas. The high mountains are covered with juniper forests and meadow steppes. The natural conditions are conducive to the cultivation of cotton and other warmth-loving crops, such as grapes and apricots.

The Gissar-Alai, or Zeravshan Region, is a rugged mountainous land, where the landscape is largely dependent on the distribution of precipitation and the exposure of the slopes. Broad-leaved forests and meadow steppes predominate on the southern slopes of the Gissar Range; elsewhere there are juniper open woodlands, steppes, and desert steppes.

Southwestern Tadzhikistan, which has the warmest climate, consists of broad river valleys and the ranges that divide them. The prevailing ephemeroid vegetation gives way on the upper mountain slopes to xerophytic open woodlands. Large tracts are under irrigation, and conditions are suitable for growing fine-fibered cotton and other subtropical crops.

The Central Tadzhik, or Karategin-Darvaz Region, includes river valleys and the great mountain ranges that divide them. The region is bounded by the Zeravshan and Alai ranges on the north, the Piandzh River on the south, the Karateginskii Range on the west, and the Akademiia Nauk Range on the east. The landscapes reflect altitudinal zonation as semideserts give way to alpine meadows, steppes, and meadow steppes.

The Pamirs are divided into sharply different western and eastern sections. The distribution of moisture determines the landscape in the western Pamirs; as one moves upward from the valley floors, wormwood deserts are succeeded by steppe deserts, which in turn are replaced by cushion-like vegetation. Trees and shrubs occur in places in river valleys. The eastern Pamirs, with the driest and coldest climate in Tadzhikistan, have no arboreal vegetation. The dominant landscape is that of cold alpine deserts.


Tadzhikistan: Fiziko-geograficheskii ocherk. Leningrad, 1936.
Agakhaniants, O. E. Osnovnye problemy fizicheskoi geografii Pamira, parts 1–2. Dushanbe, 1965–66.
Zabirov, R. D. Oledenenie Pamira. Moscow, 1955.
Shul’ts, V. L. Reki Srednei Azii, parts 1–2. Leningrad, 1965.
Rastitel’nost’ Tadzhikistana i ee osvoenie. Dushanbe, 1974.
Staniukovich, K. V. Rastitel’nyi pokrov Vostochnogo Pamira. Moscow, 1949.
Selivanov, R. I. Priroda i prirodnye resursy Tadzhikistana. Stalina-bad,1958.
Sredniaia Aziia. Moscow, 1968. (AN SSSR: Prirodnye usloviia i estestvennye resursy SSSR.)

According to a census taken in 1970, the population of Tadzhikistan included 1.63 million Tadzhiks (56 percent of the population), 665,700 Uzbeks, 344,100 Russians, 70,800 Tatars, 37,700 Germans, 35,500 Kirghiz, 31,700 Ukrainians, 14,600 Jews, 11,000 Turkmens, and 8,300 Kazakhs.

The republic’s population is growing at a rapid rate (see Table 2). Between 1913 and 1975 the population more than tripled, chiefly through natural increase. Tadzhikistan has the highest rate of natural increase of any Union republic—29.5 persons per thousand in 1974 compared to the national average of 9.3 persons.

In 1975 the population density averaged 23.7 persons per sq km, as compared to seven persons per sq km in 1913. The population distribution is extremely uneven and depends on the altitude. More than 85 percent of the population lives in the valleys and intermontane basins at elevations of up to 1,600 m. In the flat areas of the northern and southern valleys the density is 50–100 persons per sq km, increasing to 150 per sq km in places. In mountainous regions, the density varies from five to ten persons per sq km, declining to two persons in the Pamirs.

Women constitute 50.8 percent of the population; men, 49.2 percent (1970 census). Blue-collar and white-collar workers account for 58.6 percent of the population, and kolkhoz workers for 41.1 percent. The number of blue-collar and white-collar workers grew 24-fold between 1929 and 1974, when 714,000 such workers were employed in the economy, including 146,000 in industry, 87,000 in construction, 96,000 in agriculture, 79,000 in transportation and communications, and more than 105,000 in education and culture. Women account for 39 percent of the republic’s blue-collar and white-collar workers, including 49 percent of the industrial workers, 48 percent of those engaged in educational or cultural work, and 73 percent of public health personnel.

The ratio of urban to rural inhabitants has changed as a result of socialist industrialization. The largest cities are Dushanbe (436,000 inhabitants on Jan. 1, 1975), Leninabad (118,000), Kurgan-Tiube, Kuliab, Khorog, Nurek, and Kairakkum.

Primitive communal system (prior to the eighth century B.C.). Prehistoric man appeared in Middle Asia, including Tadzhikistan, about 200,000 years ago. Lower Paleolithic tools have been found in northern and southern Tadzhikistan at Khodzhabakirgan, Aral, and elsewhere. Objects from the Middle Paleolithic have been discovered at Kairakkum in the north and at Dzhar-Kutan and Kara-Bura in the south. The stone tools unearthed at Kairakkum and Dzhar-Kutan resemble those found in Southwest Asia, and the implements from Kara-Bura are similar to finds from northern Hindustan. Upper Paleolithic remains have been found at Shugnou in the mountains of Vneshnyi Darvaz. The high mountains, including the Pamirs, were first settled in the Stone Age.

Excavations at Tutkaul, near Nurek, have revealed that the settlement’s two lowest strata date from the Mesolithic (10,000–7,000 B.C.). Remains of the Neolithic Hissar culture have been discovered in southwestern Tadzhikistan. Two different peoples lived side by side in southern and northern Tadzhikistan between the second half of the second millennium B.C. and the beginning of the first millennium B.C. They were related to the bearers of the Kairakkum culture and to the creators of the Bronze Age artifacts of southern Turkmenia and Southwest Asia.

Slaveholding system (eighth century B.C. to the sixth century A.D.). During the transition to the Iron Age (eighth and seventh centuries B.C.), social and property differentiation appeared. Along with tribal chiefs and tribal confederations, there were rulers of entire regions. The tribes and peoples who had inhabited Middle Asia from earliest times contributed to the ethnogenesis of the Tadzhik nationality. Their ancient material and spiritual culture became an important part of the Tadzhik culture that subsequently evolved.

Tadzhikistan was an integral part of the first Middle Asian states, Sogdiana and Bactria, which existed in the first half of the first millennium B.C. The area was under Persian rule from the sixth to the fourth century B.C., when it was invaded by Alexander the Great’s army in 329. Spitamenes led an uprising against the conquerors in 329–327 B.C. After the disintegration of Alexander the Great’s empire, part of Tadzhikistan was absorbed by the Seleucid Empire. A substantial portion of Tadzhikistan was incorporated into the Greco-Bactrian kingdom in the third and second centuries B.C. Nomadic Tochari (Yuechi) tribes invaded Sogdiana around 140 B.C., later attacking Bactria.

Table 2. Population of the Tadzhik SSR
 TotalUrbanRuralPercentage of total
1913 (end-of-year estimate) ...............1,034,00095,000939,000991
1926 (census of December 17) ...............1,032,000106,000926,0001090
1939 (census of January 17) ...............1,485,000249,0001,236,0001783
1959 (census of January 15) ...............1,981,000646,0001,335,0003367
1970 (census of January 15) ...............2,900,0001,077,0001,823,0003763
1975 (estimate as of January 1) ...............3,387,0001,280,0002,107,0003862

Slaveholding relations continued to develop during the Kushana period, when many free communal peasants fell into a dependent condition. During the first centuries A.D., large irrigation canals were built, and urban centers and artisan crafts flourished. Commerce grew rapidly, as may be seen from the numerous finds of articles and coins from the Roman Empire, India, and elsewhere. Kushana writings, based on the Greek alphabet, have also been found. During this period Buddhism spread to Tadzhikistan from India and Manichaeism from Persia, although Zoroastrianism remained the dominant religion. The crisis in the slaveholding system deepened between the fourth and sixth centuries, and feudalism emerged. One of the manifestations of this crisis was the intensification of the class struggle, which culminated in the Mazdakite movement at the turn of the sixth century and in the Abrui uprising in the 580’s. During these centuries, the eastern part of Middle Asia was conquered by nomadic tribes, first the Chionites and later the Ephthalites.

Feudalism (sixth century to the first half of the 19th century). At the beginning of the sixth century, all of Middle Asia, Afghanistan, part of northern India, and certain regions in eastern Turkestan were under the rule of the Ephthalites, whose capital was Badian. In the middle of the sixth century, Middle Asia was invaded by Turkic tribes. The decisive battles (562–565) between the Turkic peoples and the Ephthalites ended in the complete victory of the Turkic Kaganate. The economic revival that began in the sixth and seventh centuries was linked to the development of feudal relations. Large tracts of land and the water necessary for irrigated farming were owned by the landed aristocracy; part of the rural population was enserfed. The cities continued to grow, with Pendzhikent becoming one of the largest cities and cultural centers. Written works have been found at Kalai-Mug and elsewhere.

Middle Asia was conquered by the Arabs in the middle of the eighth century, but the courageous resistance of its peoples continued for nearly another century. Popular uprisings against the Arabs followed one after another, the largest occurring in 720–722, in the second half of the 720’s, and in 736–737. An uprising that broke out in Nishapur in 755 under the leadership of Sumbad-mag spread into southern Middle Asia. During the Mukanna Uprising of the 770’s and 780’s the insurgents fought long and tenaciously. As a result of the Arab conquest, the various local religions—Zoroastrianism, Buddhism, Nestorianism, and Manichaeism—were replaced by Islam, and many cultural works and cities were destroyed. The inhabitants paid numerous taxes and were compelled to perform labor services. The conquest temporarily hindered the economic and social development of the peoples of Middle Asia. However, Middle Asia’s inclusion in the Caliphate ultimately contributed to the overcoming of feudal fragmentation and the subsequent formation of new Middle Asian states out of a single centralized state. Later, extensive socioeconomic and cultural contacts developed between the peoples belonging to the Caliphate, and a remarkable cultural synthesis was achieved both in Middle Asia and in the entire Near East.

In the ninth and tenth centuries, Tadzhikistan was incorporated into the Tahirid and Samanid states. The formation of the Tadzhik nationality was completed at this time. Its main ethnic components were the Sogdians, Bactrians, Sacae, Kushanas, and Ephthalites. The Tadzhik language evolved, probably out of one of the regional dialects, and gradually replaced the Sogdian language, which had hitherto been widely spoken in Mavera-un-Nahr. The term “Tadzhik” was first used in its modern sense. Agriculture, mining, handicrafts, and trade flourished. The caravan trade with southeastern Europe, China, Mongolia, India, Afghanistan, Iran, and the Caucasus expanded. The numerous Samanid coins found in Moscow, in Novgorod, and as far north as the Baltic coast attest to strong commercial ties with Old Rus’. The Tadzhik culture reached a high level under the Samanids. Rudaki, the founder of Persian-Tadzhik literature, wrote in the tenth century, and Firdausi (Ferdowsi), another great Persian-Tadzhik poet, produced the epic cycle Shah-nameh at the turn of the 11th century. Avicenna and al-Biruni were active in the 11th century.

Between the tenth and early 13th centuries, the lands inhabited by the Tadzhiks were included in the Middle Asian states ruled by the Ghaznavids, Karakhanids, and Ghorids, as well as in Karakitai and Khwarazm. Despite constant warfare, the cities expanded. Silver, gold, and iron ore were mined, and various minerals and articles made from them were exported to the Oriental countries. The development of productive forces exacerbated the conflicts within the feudal society. Class struggle was manifested in uprisings and social movements, which often had religious overtones.

The Mongol-Tatar invading armies led by Genghis Khan (1219–21) and his sons met with heroic resistance. Examples include the struggle of the inhabitants of Khodzhent under the leadership of Timur-Malik and the uprising in Bukhara in 1238. The Mongols massacred the population, left desolate cities and entire regions, and destroyed works of material and spiritual culture. Under Mongol-Tatar rule the already hard lot of the working people worsened. The economy began to revive only in the second half of the 14th century.

The feudal elite chose as its leader Tamerlane (1336–1405), who, after suppressing the Serbadar rebellion, launched a series of predatory wars against neighboring lands and created a vast state with Samarkand as its capital. Tamerlane’s empire included Mavera-un-Nahr, Khwarazm, Afghanistan, and part of Persia. During his reign large-scale construction was carried out by Middle Asian and captive artisans. After Tamerlane’s death, his empire was divided by the Timurids into two feudal holdings, ruled from Samarkand and Herat. In the late 15th and early 16th centuries small-scale commodity production reached its peak in medieval Middle Asia, and monetary relations developed. Art, learning, and literature reached a high level under the Timurids.

In the 16th century, Tadzhikistan became part of the Sheibanid state, with its capital at Bukhara. After the death of Muhammad Sheibani, Khwarazm, Balkh, and Badakhshan became independent appanages, and the Khiva Khanate emerged. Under a new dynasty, the Ashtarkhanids, internecine warring continued, resulting in the disintegration of the state. The independent Kokand Khanate emerged in the Fergana Valley in the middle of the 18th century.

Between the 17th century and the first half of the 19th the great feudal lords, both secular and religious, took possession of the land, and small farmers were ruined. Feudal rent included payments in kind or money, as well as labor services. The plight of peasant sharecroppers was especially desperate. In 1708–09, Ubaidulla Khan carried out a monetary reform in the Bukhara Khanate that provoked widespread discontent. The ensuing disturbances developed into an uprising against the khan’s rule. Feudal fragmentation was a serious obstacle to the economic and political development of the Tadzhik people and weakened them at a time when they were threatened by external enemies. Taking advantage of the weakening of the central power in the Bukhara Khanate, nomads made frequent raids.

Bukhara was conquered by Persia in 1740 during the reign of Nadir Shah. After his death in 1747, the Bukhara Khanate freed itself from vassalage, and the Mangyt dynasty came to power in 1753. In the first half of the 19th century, Tadzhikistan was divided between the Kokand and Bukhara khanates, whose economy rested on crop farming, chiefly on irrigated land, and livestock raising. In Tadzhikistan, as in the other countries of the East, the feudal state was the supreme owner of the land, but private landownership also existed. Land was classified as state land (shokh, amliak, and sultan’s land), land belonging to the ishans, or religious feudal lords (milki lands, or milki-khurr), land held by religious institutions (vakuf), and land owned by the population, which paid the kharadzh land tax (kharadzh lands) or a tithe (ushr lands). Meadows and pastures were considered communal property, but they were used chiefly by the nomadic aristocracy, who exploited the herders. The dekhkans, peasants who held land, cultivated their holdings, bequeathed them to their heirs, and even sold them, although by the sharia they were not the owners of the land but rather temporary leaseholders. At the bottom of the social scale stood slaves, who were bought and sold at special markets in the large cities.

Merciless exploitation, excessive taxes, hunger, and feudal oppression sparked numerous popular disturbances, of which the largest was an uprising in Bukhara in 1758. In the early 19th century, there were rebellions in Ura-Tiube, Khodzhent, and elsewhere. The great influence had an adverse effect on the development of the national culture. The schools (maktab) were completely controlled by the religious leaders, and in the higher religious schools, the madrasas, the curriculum was based almost exclusively on the study of theological scholasticism.

Unification with Russia; socioeconomic development in the second half of the 19th century. The interests of developing Russian capitalism demanded the expansion of markets and the seizure of new sources of raw material, primarily cotton for Russia’s textile industry. Furthermore, Russo-British rivalry prompted the tsarist government to step up its conquest of Middle Asia. Tsarist troops occupied Khodzhent (present-day Leninabad) on May 24, 1866, and Ura-Tiube on October 2; Samarkand was taken in 1868. Under an agreement signed by Russia and Bukhara on June 23, 1868, all the territory conquered by the Russian forces became part of Russia; Russian merchants were granted freedom of trade; and the emir renounced his right to conduct an independent foreign policy and pledged to pay an indemnity of 500,000 rubles.

After the suppression of the Kokand Uprising of 1873–76, the Kokand Khanate was abolished, and its territory was included in Fergana Oblast, part of the Turkestan Governor-generalship. In the Pamirs, the boundary with Afghanistan was established along the Piandzh River in 1895 by an Anglo-Russian agreement. The southwestern and central portions of present-day Tadzhikistan (known as Eastern Bukhara) and the western Pamirs remained within the Bukhara Khanate. This area was administratively divided into the beylics of Kabadian, Gissar, Darvaz, Karategin, Bal’dzhuan, Kurgan-Tiube, and Kuliab. The remainder of present-day Tadzhikistan became part of Syr Darya Oblast (after 1887, Samarkand Oblast) and Fergana Oblast.

The incorporation of part of Tadzhikistan into Russia was a progressive step for the region. It brought the Tadzhik and Russian peoples closer together. The joint struggle against tsarism and local oppressors and the growing economic, political, and cultural ties contributed to the growth of solidarity between the Tadzhiks and the Russians and other nationalities in Russia. The region was saved from the danger of British expansion, slavery was abolished, and feudal wars were ended. The region’s subsistence economy began to break down, and elements of capitalism appeared. Cotton-growing developed rapidly, and new varieties of the crop were introduced.

After the Middle Asian Railroad was built in the late 19th century, imports of Russian industrial goods increased, and the first light industries were established. Two silk-reeling factories, equipped with steam-powered machines, and a fruit-drink factory were founded in Khodzhent in 1869 and 1872. A glass plant was established in Degmai, and the first mines were opened. The development of industry facilitated the formation of Tadzhik worker cadres. A new land-use system, introduced in the Turkestan region in 1886, paved the way for the emergence of capitalist relations in agriculture. But the methods and techniques of cultivating the land remained backward.

On the negative side, unification with Russia subjected the population to dual oppression: by the local feudal lords (bais) and by Russian capitalists. The various types of taxes and obligations increased. Both in the city and in the countryside, poor craftsmen, small tradesmen, and peasants suffered from high taxation. The economic and political oppression gave rise to protests among the masses. An uprising broke out in Khodzhent on Apr. 14, 1872; it was followed by uprisings in Ura-Tiube, Kostakoz, and Guliakandoz in 1875 and rebellions in Ura-Tiube, Khodzhent, and other areas in 1880. All these spontaneous outbreaks were brutally suppressed by the tsarist government with the support of the local aristocracy.

In Eastern Bukhara, where feudal relations prevailed, the level of development of the productive forces was extremely low. Many peasants lacked sufficient land or were landless. The intensification of feudal exploitation and the tyranny of the emir’s rule provoked mass disturbances, which gained momentum during the 1870’s and 1880’s. There were peasant outbreaks in the Bal’dzhuan Beylic in 1870 and in the kishlak (hamlet) of Muminabad in the Kuliab Beylic in 1885. A large-scale uprising broke out in the Bal’dzhuan Beylic under the leadership of the peasant Vose in 1888, when owing to a good harvest, the tax collectors demanded payment not only of current taxes but also of arrears. Thousands of peasants joined the insurgents, and it was only with the aid of troops from other beylics that the emir crushed the uprising. Vose was executed.

Imperialism and the bourgeois-democratic revolutions in Russia (1900–17). Major economic changes occurred in Tadzhikistan in the early 20th century, when other crops were displaced by cotton on the irrigated lands of the north, and the raising of karakul sheep became important. A number of former grain-producing regions now imported grain. Regional specialization destroyed the foundations of feudal isolation and promoted the development of commodity relations in agriculture. Trade revived; branches of the state bank and of private banks were opened in several cities; and commercial firms and transport offices were established.

With the development of industry, a local bourgeoisie and a working class emerged. The revolutionary movement in Tadzhikistan was indissolubly linked to the Russian revolutionary movement, of which it was an integral part. The Revolution of 1905–07 in Russia had a great impact on the national liberation movement in Middle Asia. Under the influence of revolutionary Russian workers and political exiles, the working people of Tadzhikistan became increasingly active in the struggle against tsarism and local oppressors. The peasant movement spread, and there was ferment among the soldiers.

The revolutionary movement reached its peak in northern Tadzhikistan in the fall of 1905, when the first Social Democratic groups were founded. The railroad workers of Khodzhent went on strike in October and November, and the soldiers of a pontoon company attached to the Khodzhent garrison rebelled in December. In March 1906 an uprising occurred among the peasants of the kishlak of Chorku in Isfara volost (small rural district). Progressive officers and soldiers of the Russian Army and local seasonal workers participated in the revolutionary movement in the southwestern and central regions, which were part of the Bukhara Khanate, and also in the Pamirs. From 1905 to 1907 unrest swept over the beylics of Karategin, Kuliab, Bal’dzhuan, and Gissar.

After the defeat of the Revolution of 1905–07, national and social oppression intensified in the borderlands of Russia. Capitalist exploitation, combined with feudal exploitation, caused the workers’ condition to deteriorate. During World War I cotton exports rose sharply, while imports of grain and industrial goods virtually ceased. The crop failure of 1916 threatened the region with famine, and taxes continued to rise. A ukase calling for the mobilization of “non-Russians” for rear work in Russia touched off the Middle Asian Uprising of 1916. The Khodzhent District was to provide 8,948 men. On July 4,1916, a crowd of 10,000 assembled in Khodzhent’s central square to demand that the local authorities rescind the mobilization. There was a bloody clash with tsarist troops. Shortly thereafter, an uprising engulfed all of Middle Asia and Kazakhstan, extending as far as the Urals. The government carried out brutal reprisals against the insurgents. Some 3,000 people were tried, and 300 were executed.

Under the direct influence of the bourgeois February Revolution of 1917, numerous rallies, meetings, and demonstrations were held in Khodzhent, Ura-Tiube, Kanibadam, and other cities. Soviets were organized, although, as in central Russia, they were initially dominated by the Mensheviks and Socialist Revolutionaries. Along with soviets of workers’ and soldiers’ deputies, soviets of Muslim deputies and the League of Toiling Muslims were formed. On Mar. 31 (Apr. 13), 1917, the Turkestan Governor-generalship was abolished, which was a major victory for the democratic forces even though power now passed to the bourgeois Turkestan Committee of the Provisional Government. The Executive Committee of the Provisional Government was formed in Khodzhent on April 17 (30), and commissars representing the Provisional Government were appointed in the oblasts and districts. The tsarist civil servants were not removed, however, and they and the new authorities continued to carry out the former colonial policy. Demonstrations demanding reforms occurred in Bukhara in March 1917. In order to avoid further complications, the emir issued a “manifesto” promising certain democratic liberties. But the “manifesto” remained on paper, and Bukhara became a rallying point for counterrevolutionaries and fanatical Muslim reactionaries.

The October Revolution and the Civil War (1917–23). The victory of the October Armed Uprising in Petrograd impelled the working people of Turkestan to armed rebellion against the bourgeois government. After an armed uprising in Tashkent on Nov. 1 (14), 1917, power passed to the soviet of workers’ and soldiers’ deputies. The event was crucial to the victory of the Revolution throughout Turkestan, including northern Tadzhikistan, where Soviet power was established between November 1917 and February 1918. The Soviet government nationalized industrial enterprises, the Shurab and Suliukta coal mines, and the Middle Asian Petroleum Company (SANTO) oilfields. In February 1918 the Khodzhent soviet established a land and water commission, whose activity enhanced the popularity of the Soviet government among the broad strata of the local population. In late 1918, Soviet power was proclaimed in the Pamirs. Northern Tadzhikistan became part of the Turkestan Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic.

Meanwhile, in the Bukhara Khanate, Emir Seid Alim Khan remained in power with the support of the feudal lords and reactionary Muslim clergy. The victory of Soviet power in Russia and Turkestan helped revolutionize the toiling masses of Bukhara. Hoping to save his throne, the emir raised an army of 13,000 horsemen, 12,000 foot soldiers, and 70,000 militiamen, whose training was undertaken by British and White Guard officers. The emir also established ties with A. V. Kolchak, the White cossack hetman A. I. Dutov, and the Basmachi ringleaders. Nevertheless, an escalation of the people’s struggle prevented the emir from waging war on the Soviet government. The social and economic measures introduced by the Soviet government in the Turkestan ASSR exerted a great influence on the growth of revolutionary feeling in Bukhara.

Organized in November 1918, the Bukhara Communist Party (BCP) headed the working people’s struggle against the emir’s regime. By late 1919 a revolutionary upsurge was evident in Bukhara, and on Aug. 16,1920, the Fourth Congress of the BCP resolved to make preparations for an armed uprising. After a successful uprising in Staryi Chardzhui, the local revolutionary committee appealed for military aid to the Turkestan Commission of the All-Russian Central Executive Committee and to the Council of People’s Commissars of the RSFSR. The commander of the Turkestan Front, M. V. Frunze, ordered Red Army units to go to the aid of the working people of Bukhara. On Aug. 30, 1920, Red Bukhara detachments and Red Army units surrounded Staraia Bukhara, taking the city by storm on September 2. The emir fled to Eastern Bukhara, and the First All-Bukhara Kurultai (congress) of People’s Representatives, held on Oct. 6–8, 1920, proclaimed the formation of the Bukhara People’s Soviet Republic (BPSR).

Because the Bukhara Khanate had no capitalist industry or proletariat, a people’s democratic system rather than a socialist one was established there after the Revolution. It was essential to eliminate the vestiges of the feudal system and to create the economic and psychological preconditions for the transition to socialism. The government of the BPSR proclaimed the equality of all nationalities, abolished feudal taxes and obligations, nationalized all industrial enterprises, and carried out a land reform. To rout the counterrevolutionary forces grouped around the former emir, the Gissar Expeditionary Detachment was sent to Eastern Bukhara in February 1921. It included units of the Turkestan Front, detachments of the Bukhara Red Army, and members of party, soviet, Komsomol, and trade union organizations of the BPSR.

On Feb. 21, 1921, the kishlak of Dyushambe (present-day Dushanbe) was liberated from the emir’s troops, and shortly thereafter it became the political and administrative center of Eastern Bukhara. By April, Soviet power was established throughout Eastern Bukhara. The government of the RSFSR undertook to supply the population of Eastern Bukhara with timber, coal, wool, fabrics, tea, and other goods. Having fulfilled their mission, the Red Army units were withdrawn from the BPSR on Aug. 6, 1921, by agreement with the republic’s government. With their departure, however, the Basmachi Revolt, supported by the bais (rich landowners and livestock raisers), Muslim religious leaders, and déclassé elements, gained momentum in southern and central Tadzhikistan. At the end of 1921, the former Turkish minister of war, Enver Pasha, became head of the counterrevolutionary bands in Eastern Bukhara. With the active support of foreign imperialists, the Basmachi captured most of Eastern Bukhara, dealing harshly with the local population and killing soviet, party, and Komsomol workers.

By mid-1922, Enver Pasha’s counterrevolutionary forces posed a serious threat to the Soviet government in Bukhara and in all of Middle Asia. From January 1922 through June 1924, the supreme governing body in Eastern Bukhara was the Emergency Dictatorial Commission for Eastern Bukhara Affairs under the Central Executive Committee of the BPSR. On May 18, 1922, the Central Committee of the RCP(Bolshevik) adopted the resolution On Turkestan-Bukhara Affairs, which outlined decisive measures aimed at defeating the Basmachi and strengthening Soviet rule in Eastern Bukhara. Between June and August 1922, the Bukhara forces, under the command of N. E. Kakurin, inflicted a series of blows on Enver Pasha’s forces and reestablished Soviet power in most of Eastern Bukhara.

By the middle of 1923, most of the Basmachi bands had been wiped out by Red Army units supported by local volunteer detachments. The Basmachi Revolt was crushed thanks to the heroism of the Tadzhik people and the military, economic, and political assistance of the Russian and other fraternal peoples. Nevertheless, a large band headed by Ibrahim Bek continued to operate down to the middle of 1926. The Basmachi inflicted terrible suffering on the Tadzhik people and caused enormous economic losses. Most of the fertile land was turned into desert, irrigation works were destroyed, and the livestock population declined substantially.

The victory over the Basmachi and the consolidation of Soviet power enabled the people to begin restoring the economy. To coordinate the economic policy and economic plans of the Soviet republics of Middle Asia, the Middle Asian Economic Council was established in March 1923. Economic cooperation made it possible to utilize the material-technical and financial resources of the republics more rationally and to prepare the way for the socialist transformation of their economies. Taking into account the serious consequences of the Civil War, the Bureau of the Central Committee of the RCP(B) adopted a resolution in September 1922 to provide military and economic aid to the Bukhara republic. The population of Eastern Bukhara was released from the agricultural tax, and the dekhkans were granted credits to restore their farms. Thanks to this aid, by 1924 conditions in the republic permitted a shift to the construction of a socialist society.

Socialist construction, 1924–40. The Soviet government gave special attention to improving the situation of the peasantry. In 1924, 20,000 poods (1 pood = 16.38 kg) of seed grain were distributed among the poorer peasants, and aid was provided in the form of agricultural implements and money. New systems of public education and public health were introduced. Despite the destruction in Russia, the government of the RSFSR in 1924 sent the BPSR equipment for tanneries, soap factories, and textile mills. In 1923–24 the republic imported goods worth 7.5 million rubles from the RSFSR, and in 1924 the government of the USSR assumed 50 percent of the budget expenditures of the BPSR.

On Sept. 19, 1924, the Fifth All-Bukhara Kurultai of Soviets adopted a resolution transforming the BPSR into the Bukhara Soviet Socialist Republic, and ten days later it passed a resolution to include the republic in the USSR. However, the Soviet republics of Middle Asia had been established in accordance with old administrative boundaries. National disunity created difficulties for economic and cultural development, the national consolidation of peoples, and the strengthening of Soviet power on the local level. The interests of the working people of all the Middle Asian nationalities and the tasks of socialist construction required the creation of nationally homogeneous Soviet socialist republics. In September 1924 the Turkestan Central Executive Committee met to examine the question of national-territorial demarcation and decided to reorganize the Turkestan ASSR into nationally homogeneous states. On Oct. 14, 1924, the All-Russian Central Executive Committee ratified the resolution of the Turkestan Central Executive Committee on the formation of the Tadzhik ASSR within the Uzbek SSR. A law on the national-state demarcation of the Soviet republics of Middle Asia was enacted on Oct. 27, 1924, by the Central Executive Committee of the USSR.

Formed from a number of regions of Turkestan and Bukhara, the Tadzhik ASSR included 12 volosts (small rural districts) from the districts of Samarkand and Khodzhent and nearly all of Eastern Bukhara. By a resolution of the Presidium of the Central Executive Committee of the USSR, adopted on Jan. 2, 1925, the northern Pamirs were included in the Tadzhik ASSR as the Gorno-Badakhshan Autonomous Oblast. The northern parts of present-day Tadzhikistan became part of the Uzbek SSR; in 1926 these areas were combined to form the Khodzhent Okrug. The Revolutionary Committee of the Tadzhik ASSR, with N. Maksum as its chairman, was formed on Nov. 26, 1924, as the highest governing body. Dushanbe was designated the capital of the republic. The Tadzhik ASSR was officially proclaimed at a rally in Dushanbe on Mar. 15,1925.

In 1926, after the final suppression of the Basmachi Revolt, elections to the soviets were held throughout Tadzhikistan. The revolutionary committees created in 1925 for the struggle against the Basmachi were replaced by representative governmental bodies of the working people. In December 1926, the First (Constituent) Congress of Soviets of the Tadzhik ASSR adopted declarations on the formation of the Tadzhik ASSR, on the nationalization of land, water, mineral resources, and forests, on the emancipation of women, and on the introduction of universal education for workers. The Central Executive Committee formed by the Congress selected a presidium and a council of people’s commissars.

Bypassing the capitalist stage of development, the young Tadzhik republic embarked on the socialist transformation of society. Land and water reforms were introduced in the Khodzhent Okrug in 1925–26. Between 1926 and 1929, the prewar level of agriculture was regained, and cotton growing developed successfully. The foundations of socialist industry were laid. By the beginning of 1929, diesel electric power plants were operating in Dushanbe, Khodzhent, Kanibadam, and Kostakoz, as well as in the SANTO oilfields, and enterprises of the fuel, metalworking, food, and light industry were under construction. In the spring of 1930, the first mechanized mine, the Pervomaiskaia Mine, was opened in Shuraba. In February 1931, construction began on the first large power plant, the Varzob Hydroelectric Power Plant, with a capacity of 7,500 kilowatts. The SANTO oilfields were modernized. Experienced soviet and party workers and specialists in various branches of industry and agriculture were sent to Tadzhikistan. Thousands of Tadzhiks received special training and acquired various skills in the higher educational institutions and factories of the RSFSR, Ukraine, Uzbekistan, and Transcaucasia. During the first five-year plan 17 large-scale enterprises and shops were built, and most of the existing enterprises were enlarged and modernized.

The economic and cultural achievements created the conditions for the transformation of the Tadzhik ASSR into a Union republic. After hearing a report issued by the government of Tadzhikistan on the republic’s economic and cultural development, the Central Executive Committee of the USSR resolved on June 12, 1929, to make the Tadzhik ASSR a Union republic. Khodzhent Okrug, inhabited chiefly by Tadzhiks, was included in the Tadzhik ASSR on Oct. 2,1929. The Third Extraordinary All-Tadzhikistan Congress of Soviets, which was held Oct. 15–19, 1929, adopted a declaration on the transformation of the Tadzhik ASSR into the Tadzhik Soviet Socialist Republic and its direct inclusion in the USSR. The resolution was ratified by the Central Executive Committee of the USSR on Dec. 5,1929. The Tadzhik SSR was to include the Gorno-Badakhshan Autonomous Oblast and the okrugs of Khodzhent, Gissar, Garm, Kurgan-Tiube, Kuliab, Ura-Tiube, and Pendzhikent. On Feb. 24, 1931, the Fourth Congress of Soviets of Tadzhikistan ratified the constitution of the Tadzhik SSR.

Socialist construction expanded in Tadzhikistan during the prewar five-year plans, and the republic was industrialized. The most rapidly developing industries were light industry, food processing, and the production of coal and building materials. A number of electric power plants were constructed. Among the largest enterprises to be built during this period were a silk combine in Leninabad, a machine shop in Ordzhonikidzeabad, and a silkreeling factory and tannery in Dushanbe. The mining industry also expanded. The Kansai and Takeli mines went into operation in 1933–34, and an ore-dressing factory was built in Kansai in 1937.

During the second five-year plan (1933–37), the number of industrial enterprises increased from 60 in 1932 to 209 in 1937. The gross output of Tadzhikistan’s industry rose by 365 percent in this period, and the value of the industrial output increased from 5.1 million rubles to 18.6 million rubles. Highways were built. A working class was formed, and Tadzhiks became active in the party and soviets, in administrative bodies, and in economic management. Some 215 million rubles were invested in economic development during the first and second five-year plans (1929–37), and 138 million rubles were allocated during 3½ years of the third five-year plan (1938–41). Between 1929 and 1940 the number of blue-collar and white-collar workers in industry rose 12.3 times. The gross output of Tadzhikistan’s industry increased 8.8 times between 1913 and 1940.

The postrevolutionary period also saw the socialist reconstruction of agriculture. In the north collectivization began as early as 1926, when the first Associations for the Joint Cultivation of Land (TOZ) were formed. A turning point in the creation of kolkhozes came in late 1929. The next year a mass kolkhoz movement spread first through the cotton-growing areas and then through the grain-producing and livestock-raising regions. Nevertheless, collectivization in Tadzhikistan had some unusual features. At the beginning of the mass collectivization, a land and water reform was carried out only in Khodzhent Okrug. Elsewhere, the best irrigated land was owned by bai kulaks, religious leaders, and moneylenders. This explains their strong influence on the peasant masses.

In the course of collectivization, Tadzhikistan was faced with resolving the tasks of a bourgeois-democratic revolution—wiping out feudal vestiges and providing the poorer peasants with land. Through the Dzhuftgaron League (Plowman League), which became the Ittifoki Kambagalon (League of the Poor) in 1929, the rural poor helped carry out the collectivization and break the resistance of the kulak-bai; elements. There were regional variations in carrying out the policy of eliminating the kulaks as a class. Whereas in the cotton-growing regions the policy was initiated in the middle of 1931, in the mountainous regions, where cereal farming and livestock raising predominated and where collectivization was carried out through the TOZes, the kulak-bai class was eliminated during the second five-year plan. In 1933 the first kolkhozes were established in the Pamirs.

By 1936 the kolkhoz system had triumphed in the republic, and by 1940, more than 98.7 percent of the peasant farms had joined kolkhozes. In 1940, Tadzhikistan had 3,884 tractors and 51 machine and tractor stations. During the prewar five-year plans, the Vakhsh Irrigation System and the Fergana Canal were built.

Cooperating closely with the fraternal peoples of the USSR and relying on their constant aid, the working people of Tadzhikistan built socialism. The Tadzhik people became a socialist nation. The victory of socialism was confirmed by the 1937 constitution of the Tadzhik SSR. From a backward agricultural borderland of tsarist Russia, Tadzhikistan was transformed into an agricultural and industrial socialist republic. The cultural revolution began in the republic as early as the 1920’s, and cultural work expanded in the 1930’s. The Communist Party and government of Tadzhikistan had to combat the vestiges of old customs and feudal traditions, as well as the influence of the reactionary Muslim religious leaders. In the 1930’s, illiteracy was eradicated in the republic, and a national intelligentsia emerged. The women of Tadzhikistan became full-fledged members of a socialist society.

Great Patriotic War, 1941–45; creation of a developed socialist society. Along with the other fraternal peoples, the working people of Tadzhikistan came to the defense of their homeland. During the first months of the war, many plants and factories were evacuated to Tadzhikistan, where they were soon put into operation. The workers in the rear aided the front by contributing money from their personal savings. Some 35.2 million rubles were collected for the construction of the Soviet Tadzhikistan Air Squadron, and 84 million rubles were raised for the Kolkhoznik of Tadzhikistan Tank Column. More than 100,000 exemplary workers in industry and agriculture were awarded wartime orders and medals. Large military units formed in Tadzhikistan fought at Moscow and Stalingrad and on various other fronts. Tens of thousands of Tadzhiks took part in the liberation of the Ukraine, Byelorussia, and the Baltic region. Forty-nine soldiers from Tadzhikistan were awarded the title of Hero of the Soviet Union, and 14 persons received the Order of Glory. More than 50,000 people were awarded various orders and medals of the USSR.

All branches of Tadzhikistan’s economy were developed further during the fourth five-year plan (1946–50). In 1950 the level of industrial output was 1.5 times the prewar level, and cotton production was 1.7 times greater. More than 20 new industrial enterprises and shops were built. The gross industrial output in 1955 was 2.8 times that of 1940, and the output of electricity was 4.8 times greater. Agriculture developed rapidly. The area sown to cotton increased substantially, and the yield rose sharply. In 1955, Tadzhikistan supplied the country with 400,000 tons of raw cotton. During the fifth five-year plan (1951–55), labor productivity on the kolkhozes rose by 33 percent. For its great achievements in expanding cotton production and developing other branches of the economy, the Tadzhik SSR was awarded the Order of Lenin on Dec. 22, 1956.

The further development of the economy of Tadzhikistan and of the culture of the Tadzhik people took place in the 1960’s, when the entire country entered the phase of a developed socialist society. During the sixth, seventh, eighth, and ninth five-year plans (1956–75), new branches of industry were established—machine building, electrical engineering, and the chemical industry. Industry became the leading branch of the economy. Great successes were also achieved by Tadzhikistan’s agricultural workers. In recognition of the republic’s economic achievements and in commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the USSR, the Tadzhik SSR was awarded the Order of Friendship of Peoples on Dec. 29, 1972. To mark the 50th anniversary of the founding of the republic and the creation of the Communist Party of Tadzhikistan, the republic was awarded the Order of the October Revolution on Nov. 29,1974.

The present Constitution was ratified Apr. 14,1978.


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Tadzhikskaia sovetskaia sotsialisticheskaia respublika. Dushanbe, 1974.

The Communist Party of Tadzhikistan is an integral part of the CPSU. The first Social Democratic groups were organized in northern Tadzhikistan during the Revolution of 1905–07. In late 1917 and early 1918, Bolshevik organizations were created in Khodzhent (now Leninabad), Ura-Tiube, Pendzhikent, Shurab, the SANTO oilfields, and a number of other places. By the spring of 1918, northern Tadzhikistan had seven Bolshevik organizations with 170 members. Among those who took part in the founding of Bolshevik groups and who helped strengthen them ideologically and organizationally were E. A. Ivanitskii, D. T. Dekanov, I. A. Zhdanov, N. V. Chashchikhin, Kh. Usmanov, Dzh. Zakirov, and A. Mavlianbekov. In the Pamirs, the military-political commissions of the Central Executive Committee of the Turkestan ASSR and the party-political organs of military units were instrumental in forming the first party cells.

After the victory of the popular revolution in the Bukhara Khanate in 1920 and the establishment of Soviet power in Eastern Bukhara in 1921, the Central Committee of the Bukhara Communist Party, founded in November 1918, formed the Central Organizational Bureau, which was charged with establishing local party organs in the area. The Organizational Bureau of the Central Committee in Eastern Bukhara, created in June 1923, functioned until the formation of the Tadzhik ASSR. All the party organizations in Tadzhikistan operated under the direction of the Central Committee of the RCP(Bolshevik), which continually provided all-around assistance. In 1922 the Bukhara Communist Party joined the RCP(B).

In conjunction with the national-state demarcation of the Soviet republics of Middle Asia, the Politburo of the Central Committee of the RCP(B) on June 12, 1924, adopted a resolution on the reorganization of the Communist parties of Turkestan, Bukhara, and Khorezm. On December 6 of that year the Middle Asian Bureau of the Central Committee of the RCP(B) formed the Organizational Bureau of the Central Committee of the CP(Bolshevik) of Uzbekistan, which would operate in the Tadzhik ASSR. The Organizational Bureau was entrusted with the task of setting up the republic’s party organization and directing its activity until the convening of the Tadzhikistan Regional Party Conference. Held on Oct. 21–27,1927, the first Tadzhikistan Regional Party Conference summed up the activity of the party organization over the previous three years and elected the Tadzhikistan Regional Committee of the CP(B) of Uzbekistan.

Under the leadership of the Central Committee of the ACP(Bolshevik), the party organization of Tadzhikistan headed the working people’s struggle against the Basmachi and for the restoration of the national economy, which had been destroyed during the Civil War. It was the guiding force in the building of the first industrial enterprises and the creation of cultural centers. Communists undertook to overcome the feudal-bai and nationalistic vestiges and religious prejudices and to educate the working people in the spirit of socialist ideology. In September 1929 the Khodzhent Okrug party organization merged with the Tadzhik regional organization. On November 25, by a resolution of the Politburo of the Central Committee of the ACP(B), the Tadzhik regional organization of the CP(B) of Uzbekistan became the CP(B) of Tadzhikistan, comprising seven okrug party organizations (Staninabad, Garm, Kuliab, Kurgan-Tiube, Ura-Tiube, Pendzhikent, and Khodzhent) and the party organization of the Gorno-Badakhshan Autonomous Oblast.

The First (Constituent) Congress of the CP(B) of Tadzhikistan, held in Dushanbe on June 6–15, 1930, officially proclaimed the creation of the party and elected its leading bodies. The Congress outlined the most important tasks of socialist construction and proposed ways and means of fulfilling them. The CP(B) of Tadzhikistan served as a militant organizer and leader of the toiling masses in their struggle to build socialism. The party relied on the support of the soviets, the trade unions, and the Komsomol, as well as on the Dzhuftgaron, the mass public organization of the toiling dekhkans. (In 1929, the Dzhuftgaron was renamed the Ittifoki Kambagalon.) Under the leadership of the CP(B) of Tadzhikistan, socialist industrialization, the collectivization of agriculture, and a cultural revolution were carried out during the prewar five-year plans. The economic and cultural inequality of the Tadzhik people was eliminated. The CP(B) of Tadzhikistan combated Trotskyism, right-wing opportunism, various kinds of bourgeois nationalism, nationalistic vestiges, and religious prejudices, and it fought the bais. The emancipation of Tadzhik women and their active involvement in the construction of the new society were among the great achievements of socialism.

All along, the CP(B) of Tadzhikistan received theoretical and practical assistance from the Central Committee of the ACP(B). Among prominent party workers of the 1920’s and 1930’s were B. V. Tolpygo, M. D. Guseinov, S. K. Shadunts, G. I. Broido, U. Ashurov, D. Z. Protopopov, Sh. Shotemor, and I. Ismailov.

During the Great Patriotic War (1941–45), the CP of Tadzhikistan was chiefly concerned with forming and training military units, organizing mass defense work among the population, and supplying the army and the front with all that was necessary to rout the enemy. During the war years the party sent more than half of its members to the front. Under the leadership of the party, the entire economy was placed on a wartime footing in the shortest possible time. A crucial role in improving the party’s work was played by two resolutions adopted by the Central Committee of the ACP(B): On the Work of the Central Committee and the Oblast Committees of the CP(B) of Tadzhikistan (Oct. 7, 1942) and On the Work of the Central Committee of the CP(B) of Tadzhikistan (Dec. 13, 1944). In implementing these resolutions, the CP of Tadzhikistan worked for the fulfillment and over-fulfillment of the production plans of industrial enterprises and transportation organizations, increased productivity in agriculture, and improvement of party-organizational and ideological work. During the war years, 17,024 persons joined the party. (See Table 3a for figures on the membership of the CP of Tadzhikistan.)

Table 3a. Membership in the Communist Party of Tadzhikistan (as of January of year cited)
 MembersCandidate membersTotal
1925 ...............211224435
1930 ...............1,9391,9093,848
1940 ...............5,5965,83911,435
1950 ...............25,7985,43631,234
1960 ...............42,8345,08647,920
1970 ...............79,2285,00884,236
1975 ...............90,6323,58494,216
1978 ...............97,4034,105101,508

In the postwar period the party directed its efforts toward the further development of the republic’s economy, the completion of the building of socialism, and communist construction. The resolutions adopted by the Twentieth through Twenty-fifth Congresses of the CPSU and the new Party Program became the rallying cry of the republic’s Communists. Of great significance in the life of the CP of Tadzhikistan was the decree On the Work of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Tadzhikistan

Table 3b. Congresses of the Communist Party of Tadzhikistan
First Congress ...............June 6–15, 1930
Second Congress ...............Jan. 7–14, 1934
Third Congress ...............Aug. 16–27, 1937
Fourth Congress ...............June 7–14, 1938
Fifth Congress ...............Feb. 22–27, 1939
Sixth Congress ...............Mar. 13–17, 1940
Seventh Congress ...............Dec. 20–23, 1948
Eighth Congress ...............Sept. 19–22, 1952
Ninth Congress ...............Jan. 18–20, 1954
Tenth Congress ...............Jan. 26–29, 1956
Eleventh Congress ...............Jan. 14–16, 1958
Twelfth (Extraordinary) Congress ...............Jan. 14–15, 1959
Thirteenth Congress ...............Feb. 4–6, 1960
Fourteenth Congress ...............Sept. 21–23, 1961
Fifteenth Congress ...............Dec. 25–26, 1963
Sixteenth Congress ...............Mar. 2–3, 1966
Seventeenth Congress ...............Feb. 18–19, 1971
Eighteenth Congress ...............Jan. 27–28, 1976

Toward Fulfilling the Resolutions of the Twenty-third Congress of the CPSU, adopted by the Central Committee of the CPSU on Dec. 17,1968. Guided by this document, the CP of Tadzhikistan raised the level of party direction in the republic’s economic, cultural, and public life. In January 1976 the party had 96,716 members, 65.6 percent of whom were employed in the various branches of material production. All of the approximately 70 national and ethnic groups living in the republic are represented in the party. In 1976 the party structure included three oblast committees, 12 city committees, four urban and 34 rural district committees, 4,371 primary and 3,581 workshop organizations, and 2,542 party groups. Under the conditions of a developed socialist society, the party is mobilizing the working people of Tadzhikistan to solve the problems of creating the material and technical basis for communism. (A list of the Congresses of the CP of Tadzhikistan is given in Table 3b.)


Materialy po istorii Kommunisticheskoi partii Tadzhikistana, fases. 1–2. Dushanbe, 1963–71.
“Postanovlenie TsK KPSS o rabote TsK KP Tadzhikistana po vypolneniiu reshenii XXIII s”ezda KPSS, 17 dek. 1968.” In KPSS v rezoliutsiiakh i resheniiakh s”ezdov, konferentsii i plenumov TsK, vol. 9. Moscow, 1972.
XVII s”ezd Kommunisticheskoi partii Tadzhikistana: Stenografich. otchet. Dushanbe, 1972.
Kommunisticheskaia partiia Tadzhikistana v dokumentakh i tsifrakh (1924–1963). Dushanbe, 1965.
Tarasov, V., and V. Dvornikov. Kommunisticheskaia partiia Tadzhikistana v tsifrakh. Dushanbe, 1974.
Ocherki istorii Kommunisticheskoi partii Tadzhikistana, 2nd ed. Dushanbe, 1968.
Rasulov, D. 40 let Kommunisticheskoi partii Tadzhikistana. Dushanbe, 1964.
Kompartiia Tadzhikistana v usloviiakh razvitogo sotsialisticheskogo obshchestva. Dushanbe, 1974.

The Komsomol of Tadzhikistan is an integral part of the All-Union Komsomol. In northern Tadzhikistan the first Komsomol cells appeared in 1918; in the central and southern regions they emerged after the victory of the popular revolution in Bukhara in September 1920. In the Pamirs, the first cells were established in Khorog and Porshnev in 1923. Among those who helped to found the Komsomol of Tadzhikistan are Dzh. Zakirov, Sh. Khodzhaev, I. Ozerov, A. Ismailov, K. Barakaev, A. Salimzade, F. Iusupov, D. D. Morokin, A. Khaidarov, D. Alifbekov, M Toshmukhammedov, A. Zinatshoev, and M. Idzhubov.

The Komsomol originated under unusual circumstances. Because the stratum of worker youth was very small, the Komsomol drew its support chiefly from peasant youth, the majority of them illiterate. The first All-Tadzhikistan Conference of the Komsomol met in Dushanbe on Oct. 27,1925, to found the Tadzhikistan Regional Committee of the Komsomol of Uzbekistan.

The Komsomol of Tadzhikistan participated in the establishment and consolidation of Soviet power and in the crushing of the Basmachi Revolt. Responding to an appeal from the party, the republic’s Komsomol members and other young people stood in the forefront of the struggle for industrialization and the collectivization of agriculture. In 1932, 48 Komsomol-youth kolkhozes were established on the initiative of local Komsomol committees. The Komsomol took responsibility for the construction of the Termez-Dushanbe Railroad, the Vakhsh Irrigation System, and

Table 4a. Membership in the Komsomol of Tadzhikistan
1930 ...............15,915
1932 ...............33,128
1939 ...............53,675
1946 ...............54,711
1950 ...............82,391
1960 ...............123,000
1970 ...............196,000
1975 ...............309,637
1978 ...............377,571

the Dushanbe-Khorog Highway. It also made a major contribution to the cultural revolution, especially to eradicating illiteracy. With the formation of the Tadzhik SSR, the Komsomol regional organization was reconstituted the Komsomol of Tadzhikistan in 1930.

During the Great Patriotic War (1941–45), 40,000 Komsomol members from Tadzhikistan took part in the fighting against the fascist invaders. Some 20 Komsomol young people were awarded the title of Hero of the Soviet Union, among them D. Azizov, S. Amirshoev, Kh. Kendzhaev, I. Khamzaaliev, and T. Erdzhigitov, who repeated Aleksandr Matrosov’s feat.

Since the war, the Komsomol of Tadzhikistan has participated in the further development of the republic’s economy, including the opening up of virgin lands. The Komsomol committees are constantly perfecting the approaches and methods used in the ideological-political and labor upbringing of the younger generation. The Komsomol members and other young people of Tadzhikistan are successfully living up to the slogan “To work better today than yesterday, and tomorrow better than today!” The proportion of Komsomol members in the sphere of material production is increasing. In 1975, 110,678 Komsomol members (more than 30 percent of the total membership) were working in the republic’s economy. Under the leadership of the Communist Party, the Komsomol of Tadzhikistan is taking part in the building of a communist society. In November 1975, the Komsomol of Tadzhikistan was awarded the Order of the Red Banner of Labor on the occasion of its 50th anniversary. (Figures on the membership in the Komsomol of Tadzhikistan are given in Table 4a, and a list of the Congresses of the Komsomol of Tadzhikistan is given in Table 4b.)

Table 4b. Congresses of the Komsomol of Tadzhikistan
First Congress ...............Nov. 28-Dec. 7, 1930
Second Congress ...............Aug.28-Sept.3,1932
Third Congress ...............Feb. 10–16,1936
Fourth Congress ...............Nov. 10–28, 1937
Fifth Congress ...............May 10–1 7, 1939
Sixth Congress ...............Sept. 30-Oct. 1,1940
Seventh Congress ...............Dec. 24–26, 1946
Eighth Congress ...............Jan. 19–22,1949
Ninth Congress ...............Sept. 13–15, 1950
Tenth Congress ...............Mar. 15–17, 1952
Eleventh Congress ...............Jan. 29–31,1954
Twelfth Congress ...............Feb. 9–10, 1956
Thirteenth Congress ...............Mar. 5–6, 1958
Fourteenth Congress ...............Mar. 10–11,1960
Fifteenth Congress ...............Jan. 25–26, 1962
Sixteenth Congress ...............Jan. 6–7, 1964
Seventeenth Congress ...............Feb. 15–16, 1966
Eighteenth Congress ...............Feb. 15–16, 1968
Nineteenth Congress ...............Feb. 26–27, 1970
Twentieth Congress ...............Mar. 3–4, 1972
Twenty-first Congress ...............Feb. 27–28, 1974
Twenty-second Congress ...............Feb. 24–25, 1978


Mirzoshoev, S. Slavnye dela komsomola Tadzhikistana. Dushanbe, 1960.
Islamov, Iu. A. Komsomol Tadzhikistana—vernyi pomoshchnik partii v bor’be za kollektivizatsiiu sel’skogo khoziaistva 1929–1937 gg.). Dushanbe, 1963.
Zikrieev, F. Komsomol Tadzhikistana v bor’be za tekhnicheskii progress. Dushanbe, 1971.

The trade unions of Tadzhikistan are part of the trade unions of the USSR. The first trade union organization in Tadzhikistan, the Railroad Committee of the Workers and Office Employees of Khodzhent (now Leninabad), was formed after the February bourgeois-democratic revolution, in March 1917. Numerous trade unions were organized after the victory of the October Revolution. The Second Congress of the Communist Party of Turkestan, convened in December 1918, adopted the resolution On the Attitude Toward Trade Unions and called on the republic’s party organizations to concentrate on the establishment of trade unions. Delegates from 103 occupational organizations attended the First Congress of Trade Unions of the Turkestan ASSR, held in Tashkent in June 1919.

During the Civil War, the trade unions of Tadzhikistan helped mobilize the working people for the struggle against the White Guards and Basmachi and took part in forming Red Army units and volunteer detachments. The Organizational Bureau of the Trade Unions of the Tadzhik ASSR was established in March 1925. By that year there were 1,300 trade union members, including soviet functionaries, construction and food-industry workers, unskilled laborers, handicraft weavers, and blacksmiths. The First All-Tadzhikistan Congress of Trade Unions, held in April 1926, elected the Central Council of Trade Unions. By the middle of 1926, there were 49 local committees with more than 3,000 members, most of them farm laborers and blue-collar workers.

During the years of socialist construction, the trade unions, led by party organizations, took part in socialist transformations, the industrialization of the country, the collectivization of agriculture, the training and education of the working class and the intelligentsia, and the cultural revolution. They also worked to emancipate Tadzhik women and draw them into social production and the governing of the state. The trade unions organized socialist competition and the shock-worker and Stakhanovite movements. By 1940 they had a membership of 80,000.

During the Great Patriotic War, the trade unions were instrumental in placing the republic’s economy on a wartime footing, expanding military production, putting into operation the industrial enterprises that had been evacuated to Tadzhikistan, and settling the evacuated Soviet people.

Since the war the republic’s trade unions have taken part in the further development of the economy and culture. They have organized socialist competition, the movement for a communist attitude toward labor, and production efficiency and inventiveness. They have also worked for the fulfillment of production plans and increased labor productivity, and they have devoted much attention to organizing socialist competition between the working people of Tadzhikistan and those of the other Union republics. The trade unions of Tadzhikistan exercise state and public supervision over the protection of labor, the use of safety equipment, and the observance of labor legislation. They are concerned with improving the conditions of work and leisure for industrial, office, and agricultural workers, and they conduct extensive educational work.

In January 1975 the republic’s 6,480 primary trade union organizations had a membership of more than 750,000. That year the trade unions’ cultural and recreational facilities included 154 houses and palaces of culture and clubs, 2,084 recreation and reading rooms, 181 film projection units, and 154 libraries. In addition, 1,532 amateur artistic groups and three voluntary sports societies functioned under the auspices of trade unions. The state social insurance budget totaled 63.6 million rubles in 1974. The republic’s trade unions maintain contacts with foreign trade organizations.


Radzhabov, S. A., and M. R. Shukurov. Profsoiuzi Sovetskogo Tadzhikistana (historical study). Moscow, 1964.

General characteristics. Modern Tadzhikistan is an industrial and agrarian republic whose diversified large-scale industry was founded during the Soviet era. In 1974 the volume of industrial output was 111 times that of 1913 and 12.7 times that of 1940. The output of raw cotton increased 27 times between 1913 and 1974, and such other traditional branches as fruit growing, viticulture, and sericulture have been expanded. In 1974 industry accounted for 54 percent of the gross social product, construction for 14 percent, agriculture for 23 percent, and transportation and communications for 2.5 percent. Between 1924 and 1974 capital investments in the economy amounted to 10.472 billion rubles. In the context of the national economy of the USSR, Tadzhikistan stands out as a cotton-growing region and a mining area producing nonferrous and rare metals. Its silk, cotton, carpet, vegetable-oil, canning, and wine-making industries are of all-Union significance, and its machine-building and metalworking enterprises are important for the republic’s economy. In 1974 the republic produced 10.4 percent of the USSR’s cotton fiber, 3.4 percent of its silk fabrics, 1.4 percent of its cotton textiles, 2.7 percent of its vegetable oil, and 1.6 percent of its canned goods. The republic ranks first in the production of geranium oil and lemons.

Although Tadzhikistan maintains strong economic ties with all the Union republics, its principal trading partners are the other Middle Asian republics. From the other Soviet republics Tadzhikistan receives engineering equipment, instruments, motor vehicles and other means of transportation, ferrous metals and metal goods, petroleum products, lumber, and synthetic fibers. In turn, it supplies the rest of the USSR with cotton fiber, silk fabrics, carpets and carpet products, vegetable oil, canned goods, dried fruits, wines, tobacco products, concentrates of nonferrous metals, aluminum, spare parts, cement, slate, asbestos-cement pipes, equipment for oil fields and refineries, and refrigerators. Tadzhikistan’s products are exported to approximately 50 foreign countries.

Industry. During the 1960’s and 1970’s the most rapid growth occurred in the various branches of heavy industry, which accounted for 26 percent of the gross industrial output in 1974 (as against 13 percent in 1940). Light industry and food processing contribute about three-fourths of the republic’s industrial output. The growth of production in various branches of industry is shown in Table 5, and the output of selected industrial products is given in Table 6. The main branches of heavy industry are electric power production, mining, nonferrous metallurgy, machine building, metalworking, and the production of construction materials.

Table 5. Growth rates in total volume of industrial output (as percentages of 1940)
All industry ...............439.912.7
Electric power ...............2.992.0115.0
Fuel ...............
Machine building and metalworking ...............9.162.690.0
Building materials ...............13.954.071.1
Light industry ...............
Food industry ...............3.07.310.0

Founded during the Soviet period, the republic’s electric power industry is developing at a rapid rate. Among the largest generating plants are the Golovnaia Hydroelectric Power Plant (210 megawatts [MW]) on the Vakhsh River, the Druzhba Narodov Kairakkum Hydroelectric Power Plant (126 MW) on the Syr Darya, the Perepadnaia (30 MW) and Tsentral’naia (18.6 MW) hydroelectric power plants on the Vakhsh Canal, the Varzob group of hydroelectric power plants (25 MW), the Dushanbe Heat and Electric Power Plant (225 MW), and the lavan Heat and Electric Power Plant (180 MW). The Nurek Hydroelectric Power Plant on the Vakhsh River, which will have a capacity of 2,700 MW when completed, began generating electricity at the end of 1972. Tadzhikistan’s electric power output increased 62 times between 1940 and 1974, in contrast to the 20-fold increase in the USSR as a whole. The republic’s rich hydroelectric resources offer great opportunities for the expansion of electric power production.

Coal mining is the main branch of the fuel industry. The coal comes from the Shurab brown-coal deposits in the north. Petroleum is extracted in the north, at Nefteabad and Ravat, and in the south, at Kichik-Bel’, Akbashadyr, and Shaambary. The petroleum taken from the southern deposits—heavy and with a high sulfur and paraffin content—is used chiefly in paving roads. The demand for petroleum products is basically met by imports from Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. Natural gas, extracted since 1964, is obtained from the Kyzyl-Tumshukskoe deposit in the Vakhsh River valley and the Komsomol’skoe deposit in the Gissar Valley. Gas pipelines connect Dushanbe with the gas fields. Northern Tadzhikistan is supplied with Bukhara gas.

Lead-zinc and bismuth ores are mined at Altyn-Topkan, Kurusai,

Table 6. Output of chief industrial products
Electricity (million kW-hr) ...............62. 1169.51,288.43,237.83,864.1
Coal (thousand tons) ...............28204449854887932
Petroleum and gas condensate (thousand tons) ...............9.7302017181242
Natural gas (million eu m) ...............2.20.2388496
Mineral fertilizers (standard units, thousand tons) ...............252.2386.7
Cable products by weight of copper (thousand tons) ...............1.02211.65210.564
Illumination engineering equipment (thousand rubles) ...............34.410,53211,385
Power transformers (million kV-A) ...............0.091.3791.851
Household refrigerators (thousand units) ...............129.6133.9
Cement (thousand tons) ...............17.2134.2871.7992.4
Prefabricated reinforced-concrete components (thousand eu m) ...............129.2627.5809.7
Asbestos-cement pipes, standard thousand km) ...............1.1131.552
Cotton fiber (thousand tons) ...............0.60060. 971.1137.4235.0258.4
Cotton textiles (million m) ...............0.216.651.599.9109
Raw silk (tons) ...............254233292322363
Silk fabrics (million m) ...............1. 6625.843.249.2
Carpets and carpet products, pure wool and half wool (thousand sq m) ...............421.13,2263,727
Hosiery (million pairs) ...............0. 21.1525.527.8
Knit underwear (million units) ...............0.4650.6063.4535.6845.941
Knit outerwear (million units) ...............0.110.510.033.5943.670
Leather footwear (million pairs) ...............0.4550.7693.1196.0846.759
Vegetable oil (thousand tons) ...............3. 512.840.568.890.9
Canned goods (million standard containers) ...............13. 930.361.3172.8221.9
Grape wine (million decaliters) ...............0.2730.4521.1023.4703.214

Kansai, and Adrasman, and antimony-mercury ores are extracted and processed by the Anzob Mineral Concentration Combine. Tungsten-molybdenum ores (Chorukh-Dairon) and gold are also mined. Nonmetallic minerals include fluorite (Kandara, Naugarzan) and various raw materials used in making building materials. Nonferrous metallurgy is being introduced. The first aluminum plant in Middle Asia went into operation at Tursunzade in 1975. There is a hydrometallurgy plant at Isfara.

The republic’s machine-building and metalworking enterprises manufacture reeling machines, agricultural machinery, household refrigerators, equipment for commercial and public dining enterprises, pipe fittings, transformers, cables, illumination engineering equipment, low-voltage electrical equipment, and spare parts for motor vehicles and tractors. A leading industrial center, Dushanbe is the site of the Tadzhiktekstil’mash Plant (textile machinery), the Tadzhiktorgmash Association (commercial equipment), the Tadzhikkabel’ Plant (cables), and plants producing household refrigerators and pipe fittings. Leninabad has a plant belonging to the Tadzhiktorgmash Association. Kanibadam produces spare parts for motor vehicles (Avtozapchast’ Plant); Kurgan-Tiube, transformers; Isfara, illumination engineering equipment; Kuliab, assembly tools; and Adrasman, low-voltage electrical equipment.

The republic’s chemical industry is expanding. The Vakhsh Nitrogen Fertilizer Plant at Kalininabad manufactures mineral fertilizers (carbamide). The large electrochemical plant under construction at lavan in 1976 will use local raw materials and electric power from the Nurek Hydroelectric Power Plant.

The building materials industry, established in the postwar period, produces cement, asbestos-cement products, reinforced-concrete and concrete components, wall materials, lime, gypsum, and slag wool. The main centers are Dushanbe, Leninabad, Kuliab, KairakkUm, Kurgan-Tiube, Kanibadam, Isfara, and Ord-zhonikidzeabad. The wood-products industry, located in Dushanbe and Leninabad, uses raw materials brought from other republics.

The republic’s light industry is linked to the processing of agricultural raw materials. The main branches are cotton ginning and the production of cotton textiles, silk, carpets, garments, knitwear, leather and footwear, and notions and clothing accessories.

Table 7. Sown area of selected crops (hectares)
Total sown area...............494,300807,100724,300764,900722,000
Cereals ...............437,800567,400360,600320,500211,000
Winter and spring wheat ...............334,100410,300250,000220,300115,400
Winter and spring barley ...............72,400127,40080,70067,20058,500
Rice ...............14,2007,5004,5007,4007,100
Legumes ...............3,80013,20010,4008,7009,100
Industrial crops ...............37,200160,600214,600266,200272,800
Cotton ...............26,700106,100172,400254,000264,900
Oil crops ...............10,40051,20040,7007,8003,100
Oil flax ...............10,40035,90039,4007,5002,900
Potatoes ...............1,2009,2006,1007,8009,100
Vegetables and melons ...............4,70014,50011,70019,40020,800
Fodder crops ...............13,40055,300131,200150,800207,400
Table 8. Area of orchards, berry plantings, and vineyards (hectares)
Fruit and berry plantings, including citrus fruit ...............21,20042,30064,40065,400
Vineyards ...............8,20012,70018,30021,100

Most of the enterprises are in Dushanbe, Leninabad, Kairakkum, Kanibadam, and Ura-Tiube. Cotton-ginning plants are scattered throughout the cotton-growing regions.

Contributing about one-fourth of the gross industrial product in 1974, the expanding food industry is based on the republic’s diversified agriculture. The leading branches are fruit canning, wine-making, vegetable-oil extraction, and the production of confectionery, meat and dairy products, perfume, and tobacco products. The vegetable-oil industry, which extracts oil from cotton seeds, is represented by plants in Kanibadam and Kurgan-Tiube, the Kuliab Vegetable Oil Mill, and the Dushanbe Vegetable Oil Combine. In 1974 the vegetable-oil output was 26 times that of 1940. Most of the fruit and vegetable canneries are located in the north, where the orchards and vineyards are concentrated. The largest canning combines are in Leninabad, Kanibadam, and Isfara. There are wineries in Dushanbe, Ura-Tiube, Pendzhikent, and Shakhrinau. Dairies are found throughout the republic, the largest of them in Dushanbe and Leninabad. Flour milling, a growing industry, is represented by combines in Dushanbe, Kairakkum, Ordzhonikidzeabad, and Nau.

Agriculture. As a result of the socialist reconstruction of agriculture in Tadzhikistan, large-scale highly mechanized kolkhozes and sovkhozes were established. In 1974 the republic’s 245 kolkhozes and 124 sovkhozes were equipped with 26,700 tractors, about 3,000 cotton pickers, and about 16,000 trucks. Nearly all of the kolkhozes and sovkhozes are electrified; in 1974 they expended 248 million kW-hr of electricity on production, 8.3 times more than in 1960. Mineral fertilizers and pesticides are widely used. Some 815,000 tons of mineral fertilizers were delivered to the farms in 1974, compared to 312,000 tons in 1960.

CROP CULTIVATION. In 1974 the republic’s agricultural enterprises and farms had 4.1 million hectares (ha) of farmland at their disposal, including 800,000 ha of arable land and 3.2 million ha of pastures and hayfields. Irrigation projects have increased the amount of irrigated land from 211,000 ha in 1913 to 568,000 ha in 1974. Irrigation canals, reservoirs, and pumping stations have been built. The largest canals are the Bol’shoi Gissar, Dal’verzin, Bol’shoi Fergana, Severnyi Fergana, and Vakhsh canals. Newly developed areas lying at higher elevations are mechanically supplied with water by means of pumping stations. In this way, the Samgar, Kumsangir, Golodnaia Steppe, Khodzhabakirgan, Dal’-verzin, and other tracts were made suitable for agriculture. The 1974 gross agricultural output was valued at 960.6 million rubles (in 1965 prices), an amount 2.2 times greater than the 1960 output.

During the Soviet era, significant qualitative changes occurred in the structure of the sown area: the area under grain declined, and the area planted to cotton increased (see Table 7).

Among the cotton-growing republics of the Soviet Union, Tadzhikistan ranks first in cotton productivity (33.2 quintals/ha in 1974) and third, after the Uzbek and Turkmen SSR’s, in terms of the gross cotton harvest. Tadzhikistan is the country’s leading producer of fine-fibered cotton. In 1974, 5.1 times more raw cotton was produced than in 1940. Cotton growing is well developed on the irrigated plains in the north and southwest. Tobacco is grown on irrigated land in the foothill and mountain areas. Geraniums (Pelargonium) are cultivated in the Gissar and Vakhsh valleys by two sovkhozes and three kolkhozes, which provide 36 percent of the USSR’s output of geraniums. Oil crops (oil flax and sesame) are raised primarily on dry-farming land in the foothills.

Some 29.2 percent of the sown area is under grains. The main cereals—wheat and barley—are cultivated everywhere by dry-farming methods. Rice is grown chiefly on the irrigated floodplains of northern and southwestern Tadzhikistan, as well as around Pendzhikent in the Zeravshan River valley. Vegetables and melons are raised almost everywhere in the republic, and potatoes are grown in the foothills and mountains. Suburban farming is developing around Dushanbe and Leninabad.

Table 9. Harvest of major crops (tons)
Cereals ...............201,700323,800255,700222,200185,400
Wheat ...............133,300221,600160,700127,10075,700
Barley ...............38,70078,30064,00049,20042,300
Rice ...............18,40010,50010,20027,20030,200
Cotton raw ...............32,300172,400399,400726,600879,200
Potatoes ...............9,80037,80030,80067,000123,100
Vegetables ...............44,40049,000206,300274,300
Fruits and berries ...............120,80039,600145,500218,500
Grapes ...............49,00043,80095,200136,800

Fruit growing and viticulture are important branches of agriculture (see Table 8). Most of the orchards and vineyards are found in the north, but they are also widespread in the southwest. The main crops are apples and apricots; also grown are cherries, peaches, plums, pears, quinces, pomegranates, figs, and almonds. Lemon growing by the trench method was introduced in the postwar years. Statistics on the harvest of major crops are given in Table 9.

ANIMAL HUSBANDRY. Livestock is raised for meat-wool and meat-dairy purposes. Suburban dairy farming is flourishing around Dushanbe and Leninabad. Various kinds of livestock and poultry are raised (see Table 10). Animal husbandry plays a secondary role in cotton-growing regions and a primary one in the mountainous areas, where transhumance is practiced. Karakul sheep are raised in the southwest and north. New, more productive breeds have been introduced, such as the Brown Swiss

Table 10. Number of livestock and poultry (on January 1)
Cattle ...............739,000580,000683,1001,008,0001,089,600
Cows ...............269,000187,800257,200372,500397,400
Hogs ...............20,80080,50077,900105,800
Sheep ...............1,000 0001,054,3002,182,7002,182,1002,334,000
Goats ...............930,0001,120,000402,800451,800526,700
Horses ...............109,000124,20063,40045,10041,400
Poultry ...............900,0001,800,0002,700,0004,000,000
Table 11. Output of major livestock products
Meat (dressed weight; tons) ...............48,00030,50046,50063,90078,200
Milk (tons) ...............102,000134,700203,400284,900372,100
Eggs (million units) ...............2037,891,4131,3209,9
Wool (tons) ...............2,0591,5874,6604,8405,146

cow, noted for its high milk yield, and the Tadzhik sheep, raised for meat, fat, and wool. The entire system of livestock raising is based on modern zootechnical methods. Interregional stations have been established to serve transhumant livestock raising. Horse breeding continues to be important in Tadzhikistan, where Lokai and Karabair horses are raised. There are also large hog-raising sovkhozes. The output of livestock products is shown in Table 11. Sericulture is found everywhere except the eastern part of the Gorno-Badakhshan Autonomous Oblast. Tadzhikistan holds fourth place in the production of cocoons.

Data regarding state purchases of agricultural products are given in Table 12.

Transportation. Railroads are the chief means of transportation in interrepublic hauls. The rail network totaled 903 km in 1974 (compared to about 100 km in 1913), of which 470 km were narrowgauge. The wide-gauge rail lines are found in border areas: in the north, a wide-gauge transit line crosses the entire Fergana Valley, with short branches to Leninabad and Shurab; in the south, a wide-gauge line runs from Termez to Dushanbe. Narrowgauge rail lines penetrate far into the mountainous areas, linking the economically important valleys. They connect Dushanbe and Kurgan-Tiube with Kuliab and Kurgan-Tiube with Nizhnii Piandzh. Construction of a 264-km wide-gauge line linking Termez, Kurgan-Tiube, and lavan was nearing completion in 1976 (more than 200 km were put into operation in 1974).

Motor vehicles are the chief means of transportation in carrying passengers and cargo within the republic. Of the 13,600 km of roads, 9,300 km are paved. The freight turnover reached 3.415 billion ton-km in 1974, as against 71 million ton-km in 1940. The main roads are the Khorog-Osh, Dushanbe-Termez, Dushanbe-Ura-Tiube-Leninabad, Dushanbe-Kurgan-Tiube, Dushanbe-Kuliab, and Dushanbe-Khorog highways. There are 300 km of navigable routes on the Amu Darya, Piandzh, and Vakhsh rivers. Air transport has developed rapidly in the postwar period. Air routes link Dushanbe with oblast administrative centers and remote parts of the republic, as well as with Moscow and many other cities. In 1974 the passenger turnover of air transport reached 2.293 billion passenger-km, and the freight turnover totaled 23.5 million ton-km; in 1940 the turnover was 5.5 million and 1.1 million, respectively.

Pipelines carrying gas from local gas fields cross southwestern Tadzhikistan, and branches of the Mubarek-Bekabad-Fergana pipeline bring gas to northern Tadzhikistan. Gas from Afghanistan is shipped via the 295-km Kelif-Dushanbe pipeline.

Economic regions. Northern Tadzhikistan is a major mining region in which complex and tungsten-molybdenum ores and fluorite are extracted and concentrated. Other important economic activities include the production of building materials, cotton growing, fruit growing, viticulture, sheep raising, sericulture, and such related industries as textile manufacturing (silk, carpets) and food processing (canning, wine-making).

In the Zeravshan Region the agriculture of the larger, mountainous area is dominated by livestock raising and grain growing. Rice, tobacco, grapes, and silkworms are raised on the irrigated plains of the Zeravshan River valley. Scattered throughout the region are enterprises engaged in the processing of agricultural raw materials. A mining industry is developing here, based on the extraction and concentration of tungsten and antimony-mercury ores and fluorite.

Southwestern Tadzhikistan is noted for its electric power industry, nonferrous metallurgy (aluminum production), machine building, metalworking, chemical industry (mineral fertilizers), and building-materials industry. Its diversified agriculture, with emphasis on cotton growing, has given rise to the textile and food industries. The South Tadzhikistan Territorial Production Complex is evolving here.

In the Karategin Region (Surkhob River valley) cereal farming and livestock raising, both well developed, are combined with the growing of tobacco, potatoes, and fruit, sericulture, and food processing.

The Gorno-Badakhshan Autonomous Oblast is a region of alpine transhumant livestock raising. Yaks are raised in the eastern Pamirs. In the valleys of the western Pamirs cereal farming is combined with sericulture and the cultivation of tobacco, fruit, and potatoes. Semiprecious stones are mined by small enterprises, and electric power is generated for local use.

Standard of living. The population’s living standard has risen steadily during the years of Soviet power. The national income increased 1.6 times between 1966 and 1974, and the real per capita income grew 1.5 times. In 1974 the payments received by the population from social consumption funds amounted to 735 million rubles, compared to 314 million rubles in 1965. The average monthly wage of blue-collar and white-collar workers rose from 96 rubles in 1965 to 134 rubles in 1974. The retail goods turnover of the state and cooperative trade network, including public catering, amounted to 1.532 billion rubles in 1974, compared to 726

Table 12. State purchases of agricultural products (tons)
Cotton, raw ...............172,400399,400726,600879,200
Cereals ...............75,1006,30056,10048,900
Tobacco ...............6007,90010,200
Potatoes ...............8,2005,00021,00056,100
Vegetables ...............5,00016,90088,100148,500
Melons ...............4006,60023,00047,500
Fruits, excluding citrus ...............5,10012,20046,90067,500
Grapes ...............7,30024,90082,60090,900
Dried fruits ...............6,9003,0006,4007,300
Geraniums, unprocessed ...............16,8009,40018,70023,300
Livestock and poultry (liveweight) ...............11,70049,60056,60070,000
Milk and milk products (converted into milk) ...............6,20078,300113,900155,600
Eggs (million units) ...............27.285.3148.4
Wool (registered weight) ...............1,1004,9005,0005,400
Karakul skins (units) ...............193,000185,100186,600
Cocoons ...............1,3002,1002,5003,100

million rubles in 1965 and 100 million rubles in 1940. At the end of 1974, personal deposits in savings banks amounted to 386.2 million rubles, up from 89.2 million rubles in 1965. Between 1924 and 1974, residential housing with a usable area of 25.723 million sq m was built by state and cooperative enterprises and organizations, kolkhozes, and private citizens. In 1974 alone 1.226 million sq m of new housing became available.


Tadzhikistan. Moscow, 1968. (Sovetskii Soiuz series.)
Pulatov, D. P. Geografiia Tadzhikskoi SSR. Dushanbe, 1968.
Makhkamov, K. M., and I. M. Kleandrov. Ekonomika Tadzhikskoi SSR. Moscow, 1967.
Jüraev, Q. Ahamiyati iqtisodii obhoi Tojikiston. Dushanbe, 1971.
Tadzhikskaia Sovetskaia Sotsialisticheskaia Respublika. Dushanbe, 1974.
Sovetskii Tadzhikistan za 50 let: Sb. statistich. materialov. Dushanbe, 1975.
Atlas Tadzhikskoi SSR. Dushanbe-Moscow, 1968.

Medicine and public health. In 1974 the republic had a birthrate of 37 per 1,000 inhabitants, the highest in the USSR, and a death rate of 7.5. (In 1940 the figures were 30.6 and 14.1, respectively.) Infant mortality has decreased more than seven-fold since 1913. Such diseases as plague, cholera, smallpox, relapsing fever, visceral leishmaniasis, and trachoma have been eradicated. Between 1940 and 1974 the incidence of brucellosis decreased by a factor of 16, and diphtheria by a factor of 123. The incidence of tuberculosis was 2.3 times lower in 1974 than in 1960.

There are regional differences in the occurrence of diseases. Intestinal infections and leptospirosis are more common in the hotter valleys of the irrigated farming areas. Helminthiases, trichuriasis, hymenolepiasis, and ascariasis are chiefly encountered in valleys, foothills, and low- and middle-altitude mountain regions. Crimean hemorrhagic fever is restricted to the low mountains in the south and the foothills of the Gissar Range. Q-fever and toxoplasmosis occur mostly in valleys with winter and spring pastures. Natural foci of plague, listeriosis, and tsutsuga-mushi have been identified. Endemic goiter is prevalent in the Pamirs.

Before the October Revolution, medical care was unavailable to the inhabitants, who turned to witch doctors and tabibs (healers). In 1913 the sole medical facilities in the area of present-day Tadzhikistan were a 40-bed hospital and 11 outpatient clinics, staffed by 19 doctors.

In 1974 there were 279 hospitals, with 32,500 beds (9.6 beds per 1,000 inhabitants), compared to 121 hospitals, with 4,500 beds (2.9 beds per 1,000 persons) in 1940. Of the total number of beds, 5,900 were allocated for internal medicine, 2,800 for surgery, 1,700 for skin and venereal diseases, 500 for eye diseases, 500 for neurological disorders, 300 for oncology, and 300 for oto-rhinolaryngology. Outpatient care was provided by 380 outpatient polyclinics, including 52 dispensaries, and by 995 feldsher-obstetric stations. Airborne medical teams serve inaccessible mountain areas. In 1974 there were 3,100 beds for maternity cases; 238 women’s consultation clinics, children’s polyclinics, and children’s outpatient clinics provided medical care for women and children (in 1940 there were 71 such institutions). That year the republic had 328 pharmacies, 487 pharmacy stations, and 66 kiosks. Antiepidemic services were provided by 54 epidemiological stations.

In 1974 the republic had 6,600 doctors, or one per 511 inhabitants (compared to 648 doctors, or one per 2,400 persons in 1940) and 20,100 intermediate medical personnel (2,700 in 1940). Forty-four doctors of sciences and 287 candidates of sciences were employed by the Tadzhik Medical Institute and the republic’s two medical research institutes. Tadzhikistan has 31 sanatoriums, with 4,100 beds, and eight houses of rest and boarding houses, with accommodations for 1,800 persons. The republic is noted for its health resorts of Khodzha-Obigarm, Obigarm, Garm-Chashma, and Shaambary and its therapeutic areas of Khavatag, Shakhristan, and Lake Aksykon. In 1974, 105.8 million rubles were spent on public health and physical culture, compared to 6.9 million rubles in 1940.


Tadzhiev, Ia. Zdravookhranenie Tadzhikistana. Dushanbe, 1974.
Physical culture, sports, and tourism. On Jan. 1, 1975, the republic had 2,847 physical culture groups (with more than 500,000 members), and its sports facilities included 29 stadiums, 653 soccer fields, 499 gymnasiums, 24 swimming pools, 27 tennis courts, 60 shooting ranges, and 4,500 playing fields. More than 35,000 persons were enrolled in the republic’s 58 sports schools for children and youth, 13 young people’s sports schools, and three schools for advanced sports training.
Two sports societies were organized in the 1950’s: Khosilot, a volunteer society of rural sportsmen, and Tadzhikistan, a trade union society. Between 1952 and 1974, 744 masters of sport and seven masters of sport of the international class were trained, and three athletes were awarded the title of Honored Master of Sport. During that period Tadzhikistan produced 13 champions of the USSR, two world champions, and one Olympic champion. In 1974 there were five sports camps and two lodges for hunters and fishermen. The main tourist attractions are the Fan Mountains, the Kairakkum Reservoir (“Tadzhik Sea”), the Varzob Canyon, and Lake Iskanderkul’. More than 100,000 tourists visited Tadzhikistan in 1974.
One of the major mountaineering areas in the USSR, Tadzhikistan has some of the highest peaks in the Soviet Union—Communism Peak, Lenin Peak, E. Korzhenevskaia Peak, and October Revolution Peak, all in the Pamirs. Expeditions are periodically organized to scale the 100 or so peaks rising above 6,000 m. There are mountaineering camps in the Fan Mountains and Varzob Canyon.
Veterinary services. A number of diseases have been wiped out through the use of preventive and hygienic measures, including cattle plague, infectious equine anemia, glanders, sheep pox, and pleuropneumonia of goats. Such diseases as trichophytosis and hypodermiasis of cattle, leptospirosis, Newcastle disease, necro-bacillosis, and oestriasis are on the verge of being eradicated. Malignant anthrax, gangrene, malignant edema, and swine erysipelas occur sporadically. Outbreaks of rabies are generally restricted to the Gissar Valley and Leninabad Oblast. Echinococcosis, coenurosis, theileriasis, and piroplasmosis are encountered everywhere. Moniezia infection and avitellinosis are recorded most frequently in Leninabad Oblast, and dictyocaulosis and fascioliasis are common in the Vakhsh and Syr Darya valleys. Brucellosis, tuberculosis, and foot-and-mouth disease cause considerable livestock losses.
On Jan. 1, 1975, the republic’s veterinary system comprised some 400 institutions, among them 39 stations for the control of animal diseases, 45 district veterinary hospitals, 214 veterinary districts, 31 veterinary stations, and three city veterinary-sanitary stations. Other facilities included one republic-level, three oblast, 11 interraion, and four raion veterinary laboratories, 45 meat-dairy and food control stations, and one republic-level office for the control of infectious animal diseases. That year there were 608 veterinarians and 1,264 veterinary assistants.
Veterinary specialists are trained by the veterinary departments of the Dushanbe and other agricultural institutes of the USSR. The Tadzhik Scientific Research Institute of Veterinary Science was established in Dushanbe in 1961.

A census taken in 1897 revealed that 2.3 percent of the people living in the area now included in Tadzhikistan were literate—3.9 percent of the male population and 0.3 percent of the female population. In rural areas the respective figures were 1.8 percent, 3.2 percent, and 0.2 percent. Education was controlled by the Muslim religious leaders, who taught the children of the privileged classes in maktabs and madrasas. In the late 19th century “new method” schools were founded to train officials and administrators. In view of the need for literate Tadzhiks “to hold administrative posts,” ten Russo-native schools consisting of four grades were organized in the early 20th century in Khodzhent (present-day Leninabad), Ura-Tiube, and other cities and in rural areas. By the 1914–15 academic year, these schools employed 13 teachers and were attended by 369 students. The Russo-native schools played a definite role in the spread of Russian language and culture among the local population. Before the October Revolution of 1917, the area had neither specialized secondary schools nor higher educational institutions.

The October Revolution opened the way for the development of the Tadzhik national culture. The Central Executive Committee of the Turkestan Republic enacted the statute On Organizing Public Education in the Turkestan Krai (August 1918) and promulgated a declaration calling for universal free education in the native language and the separation of school and church. In 1918, 15 soviet-run schools were opened in northern Tadzhikistan, and the next year their number increased to 73. By the end of 1926, there were 161 schools and ten children’s homes with an enrollment of 5,430.

The expansion of public education required the training of teaching specialists on a large scale. Fraternal peoples, notably the Russians and Uzbeks, provided Tadzhikistan with much assistance. The University of Tashkent played a significant role in training scientific and scientific-pedagogical personnel for the republics of Middle Asia, including Tadzhikistan. The republic’s first pedagogical technicum opened in Dushanbe in 1925, and in 1931 the city acquired a pedagogical institute with departments of language and literature and agricultural biology. A pedagogical institute was founded in Leninabad in 1932.

During the 1920’s, a campaign was launched to wipe out illiteracy among the adult population. In the 1925–26 academic year there were 63 centers for the elimination of illiteracy, with 1,450 students, and in the 1927–28 academic year, the republic’s 239 such centers were attended by about 5,000 students, including 44 women. By the 1931–32 academic year, the number of centers had increased to 3,360 and the enrollment to 134,800 students, including 22,900 women.

The cultural revolution took place amid the difficult conditions of the Civil War and the struggle against the Basmachi. Moreover, the influential Muslim religious leaders sowed distrust of the new schools. The development of women’s education was hindered by the traditional servile status of women. There were no school buildings, nor were there enough teachers or textbooks. For these reasons, universal primary education was not introduced immediately throughout the republic, but rather spread gradually. In the 1930–31 academic year, it became available to children between the ages of eight and ten (both sexes) in Dushanbe, Khodzhent, and Ura-Tiube. The next school year it was introduced in the Khodzhent District, and from 1932–33 it was instituted throughout the republic.

The 1939 census showed that 82.8 percent of the people between the ages of nine and 49 were literate (for men, the figure was 87.4 percent; for women, 77.5 percent). The introduction of a new alphabet based on the Russian script played an important role in the development of education. In the 1940–41 academic year, 300,000 students were attending general-education schools of all types. The implementation of universal seven-year education for children began in the 1949–50 academic year, and of eight-year education, in 1959–60. By the 1970 census, the literacy rate was 99.6 percent (99.8 percent for men and 99.4 percent for women). Universal secondary education was essentially established during the ninth five-year plan (1971–75).

An extensive system of children’s preschool institutions was created in the Soviet era. In 1974, 81,600 children were attending permanent preschool institutions. (In 1940 there were 8,100 children in kindergartens and day nurseries.) In the 1974–75 academic year the republic’s 3,100 general-education schools of all types had an enrollment of 900,000. At the beginning of that year more than 11,000 students were enrolled in boarding schools and extended-day schools and groups, and 38,000 students attended evening schools. Educational and cultural-educational work with schoolchildren is also conducted out of school. In 1974 the republic’s extramural facilities included a palace of Pioneers and schoolchildren (Dushanbe), 68 houses of Pioneers, six stations for young engineers, four stations for young naturalists, six children’s excursion and tourism stations, 24 children’s film libraries, 1,688 children’s libraries, and five children’s parks.

Vocational and professional training has expanded rapidly. The first industrial schools opened in 1927 at the oil fields of SANTO. On Jan. 1, 1975, 21,500 students were attending the 59 vocational-technical schools of the State Vocational-Technical Education System of the USSR. Twenty of these schools (6,600 students) provided a secondary education along with vocational training. In the 1974–75 academic year, 38,200 students were enrolled in 38 specialized secondary schools, and 48,500 students were enrolled in the republic’s nine higher educational institutions. Dushanbe is the site of Tadzhik University; it also has polytechnic, agricultural, medical, pedagogical, arts, and physical culture institutes. There are pedagogical institutes in Kuliab and Leninabad.

In the 1974–75 academic year, the republic’s school system employed some 49,000 teachers, including about 17,000 women. The institutes for advanced teacher training play a large role in improving the skills of teachers. Tadzhikistan has four such institutes: one republic-level, three oblast, one interraion, and one city school. The Tadzhik Scientific Research Institute of Pedagogical Sciences studies various aspects of public education.

At the end of 1974, the republic had 1,400 public libraries, with 9 million books and journals. The largest library is the Firdausi (Ferdowsi) State Library of the Tadzhik SSR. The leading museums are the Behzad Republic Unified Museum of History, Local Lore, and Fine Arts and the S. Aini Literary Museum in Dushanbe, the A. Rudaki Republic Museum of History and Local Lore in Penzhikent, the Khorog and Leninabad oblast museums of history and local lore, and the museum of history and local lore in Isfara. In 1974 there were 1,200 clubs in operation. (See alsoGORNO-BADAKHSHAN AUTONOMOUS OBLAST.)


Iusufbekov, R. Pretvorenie leninskikh idei v razvitii narodnogo obra-zovaniia Tadzhikskoi SSR. Dushanbe, 1967.
Amateur arts. The first amateur groups were organized in late 1919 in northern Tadzhikistan—in Khodzhent (Leninabad), Ura-Tiube, and Kanibadam—and the first club opened in Dushanbe in 1926. The expansion of the network of clubs and the holding of regular festivals for amateur talent groups contributed to the proliferation of such groups. In 1976, 2,500 amateur talent groups functioned under the auspices of the Ministry of Culture and the trade unions, among them 333 choral groups, 166 drama groups, 300 dance groups, and 679 musical groups. That year some 43,300 persons participated in amateur talent activities. The 16 best drama groups have been awarded the title of People’s Amateur Theater.

Natural sciences and technology. In remote antiquity the ancestors of the Tadzhiks extracted and used copper, lead, gold, silver, iron, and precious stones. The earliest written work attesting to the acquaintance of the Middle Asian peoples with mathematics and astronomy is the Avesta, which contains information on the movement of the heavenly bodies, a system of measuring time, and some mathematical rules. Material production and culture, including handicrafts, farming, town planning, and the arts, reached a high level in the slaveholding and early feudal states of Middle Asia. Religious, political, and scientific works were written, many of which were destroyed during the invasion of the armies of the Arab Caliphate in the seventh and eighth centuries.

Between the ninth and 11th centuries, Middle Asia was one of the most important centers of learning in the East. Astronomical observatories, Houses of Wisdom, and libraries were founded at this time. Middle Asian scholars produced translations of and commentaries on the scientific legacy of Greece and India, as well as original works on mathematics, astronomy, mineralogy, applied mechanics, physics, chemistry, and medicine. Important contributions to the development of science were made by Muhammad ibn Musa al-Khwarizmi, Abdallah al-Marwazi, Usman al-Balkhi, and al-Farghani in the ninth century and by Abu-1-Wafa al-Buzjani and Abu Mahmud al-Khujandi in the tenth century. The first works on geography and geodesy were written by Ahmad al-Sarakhsi (ninth century), Abu-1-Abbas al-Marwazi (ninth century), Abu Zaid al-Balkhi (tenth century), and al-Jaihani (tenth century). An anonymous tenth-century Tadzhik geographer left the work Hudud al-alam (The Boundaries of the World).

From the 11th to the 14th century Khwarazm, Bukhara, Merv, and Ghazni were major centers of learning, and Samarkand, the site of Ulug Beg’s astronomical observatory, came to prominence in the 15th century. A number of great men of science lived at various times in the medieval cities of Tadzhikistan, among them Avicenna and al-Biruni in the tenth and 11th centuries; Omar Khayyam in the 11th and 12th centuries; al-Jurjani in the 12th century; Nasir al-Din al-Tusi, Shams al-Din al-Samarqandi, Jamal al-Din al-Buhoroi, and Ali Shah al-Buhoroi in the 13th century; and Ubaidallah al-Buhoroi, Muhammad al-Samarqandi, and Ansori in the 14th century. The leading scientists of the Samarkand school were Kazi Zadeh al-Rumi (14th and 15th centuries), Jamshid ibn Masud al-Kashi (14th and 15th centuries), and Ali al-Kushi (15th century). There were advances in building technique and architecture in the 14th and 15th centuries. The farmers and scientists of medieval Tadzhikistan developed many new grain and fruit varieties and such valuable animal breeds as the Gissar sheep, Lokai and Karabair horses, zebu-like cattle, Pamir yaks, and local goats.

Between the second half of the 15th century and the 17th century, many Middle Asian scientists worked in Iran and Turkey, among them Ali al-Kushi, Bijandi, Mirim Shelabi, Abdulkadyr Ruyani, and Bajha al-Din Amuli. Important work was done in northern India in the 17th and 18th centuries by Najm al-Din Alihan, Farid Dekhlawi, and the school of astronomy founded by Sawai Jai Singh.

The study of Tadzhikistan’s natural environment and productive forces entered a new phase in the second half of the 19th century, after the area was incorporated into Russia. Research in the natural sciences was sponsored by various Russian scientific organizations and learned societies. The foundations for the contemporary study of the geography, geology, climate, flora, and fauna of Middle Asia, including the Pamirs, were laid in the second half of the 19th and the early 20th centuries by the Russian scientists A. P. Fedchenko, V. F. Oshanin, N. A. Severtsov, I. V. Mushketov, G. D. Romanovskii, P. P. Semenov-Tian-Shanskii, D. L. Ivanov, G. E. Grumm-Grzhimailo, V. L. Komarov, S. I. Korzhinskii, B. A. Fedchenko, O. A. Fedchenko, V. I. Lipskii, N. L. Korzhenevskii, D. I. Mushketov, D. V. Nalivkin, and N. I. Vavilov. The first geological map of the Turkestan Krai was published in 1884, and the first hydrometeorological stations were established in Khodzhent in 1870, in Ura-Tiube in 1873, in Pendzhikent in 1879, and in Murgab in 1892.

Despite the great-power policies of the tsarist government, Tadzhikistan’s entry into the sphere of Russian economic and scientific interests introduced the indigenous inhabitants to improved agricultural, industrial, and transportation technology, new ways of working the land, and such new crops as potatoes, sugar beets, oats, and tomatoes. Exposure to Russian culture influenced the development of educational, scientific, and technological ideas among the peoples of Middle Asia in the 19th and early 20th centuries. Among the outstanding men of learning of that time were Akhmad Donish, Khodzhi Khalifa, Khodzhi Iusuf, and Iakubi Farang.

OCTOBER REVOLUTION TO WORLD WAR II. After the establishment of Soviet power, there began a systematic study of the natural resources and productive forces of Tadzhikistan. Among the first expeditions undertaken to study the area were those of N. L. Korzhenevskii (1923) and the Middle Asian State University (from 1927). The Tadzhik Comprehensive Expedition (1932–38), which included the Tadzhik-Pamir Expedition (from 1933) and the Middle Asian Expedition (from 1936), was headed by N. P. Gorbunov, A. E. Fersman, D. V. Nalivkin, D. I. Shcherbakov, A. P. Markovskii (geology and geochemistry), K. K. Markov (geomorphology), I. G. Dorofeev (glaciology and topography), and N. V. Krylenko (mountaineering). A glaciological expedition was organized in 1932–33 as part of the International Polar Year. N. I. Vavilov and V. L. Komarov wrote on the geography of Tadzhikistan. In 1928 medical expeditions under the direction of E. N. Pavlovskii began studying the region’s infectious and parasitic diseases. A five-year plan for soil and geobotanical research, drawn up in 1929, was carried out by researchers at the Middle Asian State University’s soil science institute under the direction of N. A. Dimo, A. N. Rozanov, and M. V. Kul’tiasov.

Several important research institutions were founded in the 1920’s, among them the Dushanbe Hydrometeorological Station, the Experiment Station of the All-Union Institute of Plant Growing (reorganized in 1931 as the Tadzhik State Experiment Selection Station), and the Tadzhik Branch of the Central Selection Station, affiliated with the All-Union Scientific Research Institute for Cotton Growing (SoiuzNIKHI). The first all-inclusive scientific institution, the Tadzhik Base of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR, was founded in 1932. That year the Tadzhik Astronomical Observatory was founded in Dushanbe. Research problems in cotton growing (chiefly fine-fiber cotton), irrigation works construction (Vakhsh System), road building, and dry farming were discussed at a conference devoted to the productive forces of Tadzhikistan that was held in Leningrad in 1933.

After the Administration of the Hydrometeorological Service of the Republic and the Weather Bureau were established in 1933, the system of hydrometeorological stations expanded considerably, chiefly in high-altitude areas. The first alpine hydrometeorological station, established on the Fedchenko Glacier, began operations in 1933. In 1934, an expedition of the Middle Asian State University under the direction of P. A. Baranov and I. A. Raikova organized a system of permanent bases in the Pamirs that gave rise to the Pamir Biological Station in Chechekty (1938) and the Botanical Garden in Khorog (1940), directed by A. V. Gurskii.

The 1930’s saw the founding of the Varzob Mountain Botanical Station; the Kurgan-Tiube Experiment Station for Cotton and Alfalfa Selection, attached to SoiuzNIKHI and established through the efforts of N. I. Vavilov; the Vakhsh Soil Reclamation Station, headed by I. N. Antipov-Karataev; and the Dushanbe Parasitology Station, organized by E. N. Pavlovskii and renamed the Institute of Zoology and Parasitology in 1941. Also established were institutes of physical therapy, tuberculosis, and bacteriology and a republic-level livestock-raising station. The Tadzhik Geological Administration was organized in 1938, and a seismological station opened in Dushanbe in 1940.

The first comprehensive work on the minerals of Tadzhikistan was compiled in 1925 by I. I. Bezdek. D. V. Nalivkin’s Outline of the Geology of Turkestan, published in 1926, was followed by M. A. Pankov’s Soils of Tadzhikistan and The Wild Animals of Tadzhikistan, Their Life and Importance for Man by B. S. Vinogradov, E. N. Pavlovskii, and K. K. Flerov (both issued in 1935). The first geographical atlas of Tadzhikistan appeared in 1937. A geological survey of the entire territory of Tadzhikistan made in the prewar period revealed deposits of various minerals, including the Karamazor Mining Region, the Pamir-Darvazskii Gold-bearing Belt, and the ore-bearing zones of the Gissar, Zeravshan, and Turkestan ranges. The stratigraphy and tectonic structure of various regions were described.

Soil research provided the foundation for a scientific system of farming, and botanical studies made possible the compilation of vegetation maps and charts showing floristic regionalization. A number of regions were evaluated for natural pastures, and permanent stations were set up for the study of mountain forests and alpine deserts. Plant and parasitological research led to the development of measures for combating communicable diseases of man and animals and for controlling crop pests. In fulfilling the task confronting the republics of Middle Asia, that of ensuring the USSR’s self-sufficiency in cotton, the scientists and farmers of Tadzhikistan mastered the production of fine-fiber cotton, bred highly productive native strains, and achieved the world’s highest cotton yield.

In 1941 the Tadzhik Base of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR was reorganized into the Tadzhik Branch of the Academy of Sciences, headed by Academician E. N. Pavlovskii. During the Great Patriotic War (1941–45), the scientists and scientific institutions evacuated to Tadzhikistan continued their research on problems of geology, seismology, soil science, botany, selection, parasitology, and medicine. A geological map of Middle Asia was published in 1941.

POSTWAR PERIOD. The study of Tadzhikistan gained momentum after the war. The work of the Tadzhik Branch of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR prepared the way for the establishment in 1951 of the Academy of Sciences of the Tadzhik SSR, whose first president was S. Aini. In the 1950’s, the Academy of Sciences of the Tadzhik SSR conducted research in astrophysics, seismology, geology, organic and inorganic chemistry, and general biology. Most of the research was done by the republic’s own scientific workers. Several new institutes were organized within the Academy of Sciences, and research institutes in various branches of industry were founded.

In the 1960’s the older research fields were strengthened and greater attention was given to mathematics, experimental and theoretical physics, the chemistry of petroleum and natural compounds, the physicochemical problems of mineral concentration, earthquake-resistant construction, radiation and molecular biology, photosynthesis, and the physiology and biophysics of plants. Major contributions to the natural sciences and technology were made by S. U. Umarov (physics), V. I. Nikitin (acetylene chemistry), I. K. Nikitin, S. M. Iusupova, S. F. Mashkovtsev, and A. P. Nedvetskii (geology), P. N. Ovchinnikov, O. V. Zalenskii, and A. P. Zhukov (biology), V. P. Krasichkov (selection and seed production), A. N. Rozanov, O. A. Grabovskaia, P. A. Kerzum, V. I. Ivanov, and I. N. Antipov-Karataev (soil science), and V. F. Bonchkovskii and V. N. Gaiskii (seismology).

In the late 1960’s and the first half of the 1970’s, the development of the natural and technical sciences in Tadzhikistan and the achievements of the scientific and technological revolution in the USSR contributed to the successful fulfillment of the republic’s economic objectives, as reflected in the expansion of irrigated farming and the building of new installations for the South Tadzhikistan Territorial Production Complex. The introduction of progressive methods of irrigation and the all-around development of virgin lands in the Tadzhik and Uzbek sections of the Golodnaia Steppe were acknowledged by the Lenin Prize in 1972. In 1968, for the first time in the history of hydraulic engineering, a concentrated, directed explosion was produced to create the rock-fill pressure dam of the Baipazin Hydroengineering Complex on the Vakhsh River.

Geology and geophysics. Founded in 1941, the Institute of Geology of the Academy of Sciences of the Tadzhik SSR has done research on various questions pertaining to the republic’s geological structure and mineral resources. A tectonic regionalization of southern Tadzhikistan has been proposed by the institute’s S. A. Zakharov; the tectonic regionalization of the Gissar-Alai and the Pamirs has been established; and long-lived marginal fractures have been studied by M. M. Kukhtikov. The main features of the geology, stratigraphy, tectonics, magmatism, and ore content of Karamazor have been described. R. B. Baratov, S. M. Babakhodzhaev, and M. R. Dzhalilov have studied the magmatic geology, petrology, geochronology, and endogenic metallogeny of the Gissar-Alai and the Pamirs, and P. A. Pankratov has worked on hydrogeological regionalization, the use of thermal mineral waters, and the reclamation of saline soils.

Along with the scientists of the other Middle Asian republics and Kazakhstan, the geologists and geophysicists of Tadzhikistan have made comprehensive studies of the earth’s crust and upper mantle and of the distribution of minerals. Their map of the magmatic complexes of Middle Asia is highly important for prospecting. The scientists of Tadzhikistan have helped compile tectonic maps of the petroleum- and gas-bearing regions in the southern USSR, and they have made recommendations concerning oil and gas prospecting in the deep layers of the South Tadzhikistan Depression (S. I. Il’in and K. V. Babkov).

The Institute of Seismic Resistant Construction and Seismology of the Academy of Sciences of the Tadzhik SSR (founded 1951) has conducted studies of the occurrence of earthquakes in Tadzhikistan and adjoining areas in order to establish the principles of seismological regionalization (I. E. Gubin, S. A. Zakharov). The institute’s scientific workers have conducted theoretical and experimental studies—both at the institute’s laboratories and testing grounds and under natural conditions—on the stability of hydraulic-engineering structures, individual supporting members, and entire buildings (S. Kh. Negmatullaev). The institute established the USSR’s first seismic engineering service for dams and other hydraulic-engineering installations. (The agency took part in the construction of the Golovnaia and Nurek hydroelectric power plants on the Vakhsh River.) The institute’s scientists are studying the slow movements of the earth’s surface associated with earthquakes and the mechanism of their foci, and they are working on the problem of predicting earthquakes. In 1967 the institute became the leading institution for the study of strong earthquakes in Middle Asia and Kazakhstan.

Astronomy. Founded in 1958, the Institute of Astrophysics of the Academy of Sciences of the Tadzhik SSR has become a center for the study of meteors and comets. Over the years, P. B. Babadzhanov’s studies of meteors have yielded a great deal of information on the radiants, velocities, and orbits of meteors, the physical parameters of the upper strata of the earth’s atmosphere in the meteor zone, and the physics of meteor phenomena. New meteor streams have been identified, and the role of meteors in the ionization of the upper atmosphere has been investigated (L. N. Rubtsev). The physical characteristics of comets have been studied by O. V. Dobrovol’skii.

The institute has a unique photographic library of variable stars (about 50,000 negatives). Its scientists have studied the structure of the Galaxy (M. N. Maksumov) and discovered a number of variable stars and comets. The institute coordinates meteorite research in the USSR. Its leading scientists are members of the International Astronomical Union and the Astronomical Council of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR. The Gissar Astronomical Observatory was built between 1963 and 1968.

Physics. Research in physics is conducted by the S. U. Umarov Physical Engineering Institute of the Academy of Sciences of the Tadzhik SSR (founded 1964) and by the physics departments and laboratories of the Tadzhik University and other institutions of higher learning. The main fields of study are solid-state, semiconductor, and polymer physics, the molecular theory of fluids and molecular acoustics, atomic and molecular spectroscopy, electronics, high-energy nuclear physics, and heat technology. The republic’s leading physicists are A. A. Adkhamov, B. N. Narzullaev, and P. V. Tsoi.

Mathematics. The Institute of Mathematics (founded 1973) and its Computer Center, both under the Academy of Sciences of the Tadzhik SSR, and the mathematics department at the Tadzhik University are doing work on boundary-valve (including nonel-liptic) problems for systems of compound equations (A. D. Dzhuraev), the theory of differential equations with partial derivatives of elliptic mixed and compound types, generalized Cauchy-Riemann systems with singular coefficients (L. G. Mikhailov, Z. D. Usmanov), Tauberian theorems and their application to the study of the rate of convergence and summability of Fourier series (M. A. Subkhkulov), and a number of questions of functional analysis (V. Ia. Stetsenko). Mathematical methods and electronic computers are being used to resolve economic questions.

Chemistry. Chemical research is being done at the Institute of Chemistry of the Academy of Sciences of the Tadzhik SSR and in the republic’s higher educational institutions, notably the Tadzhik University and the Medical Institute. The Institute of Chemistry (founded 1945) conducts research on the republic’s natural resources and synthesizes new substances and materials for various branches of the economy. P. M. Solozhenkin has done work on the various uses of the minerals of Tadzhikistan, and other chemists have studied the heteroatomic components of the highly resinous and sulfurous petroleum of the South Tadzhikistan Depression. Methods of synthesizing semiaromatic sulfurous compounds have been worked out by I. U. Numanov, and the chemistry of the oxidation of the coals of the Foniagnob deposit has been studied by Z. A. Rumiantseva. Esters of tertiary triatomic alcohols, many of them physiologically active, have been derived by V. I. Nikitin, and high-molecular polypeptides with a regular structure have been synthesized by K. T. Poroshin. The republic’s scientists have developed methods for the laboratory and industrial synthesis, separation, and purification of tungsten-molybdenum concentrates by low-temperature chlorination (I. A. Glukhov), as well as new techniques for obtaining fluorides of alkaline-earth metals. Superpure metals and alloys based on aluminum, barium, bismuth, antimony, and other elements have also been produced.

Geography. Significant postwar contributions to the study of geography include O. K. Chedia’s and V. V. Loskutov’s works on geomorphology, L. N. Babushkin’s Agroclimatic Regionalization of the Cotton Zone of Middle Asia (1960), V. A. Bugaev and V. A. Dzhordzhio’s Synoptic Processes of Middle Asia (1957), and O. E. Agakhaniants’ Basic Problems of the Physical Geographyof the Pamirs (parts 1–2, 1965–66). The climate, waters, and contemporary glaciation of Tadzhikistan have been studied by republic-level and central institutions of the Hydrometeorological Service, by the academies of sciences of the USSR and the Tadzhik SSR, by higher educational institutions, and by expeditions based on the program of the International Geophysical Year.

The Tadzhik Geographical Society, a branch of the Geographical Society of the USSR, was established in 1953 under the auspices of the republic’s Academy of Sciences. In 1969 the academy formed the Department of the Conservation and Rational Use of National Resources, which conducts research on the protection and rational use of fauna complexes, identifies unique natural monuments, and studies the biocenosis of the republic’s preserves and wildlife sanctuaries. In 1971 the academy’s Council for the Study of Productive Forces created a geography section.

Biological sciences. Many years of study of the flora of Tadzhikistan are summed up in The Flora of Tadzhikistan (vols. 1–4, 1957–75), edited by P. N. Ovchinnikov, Iu. S. Grigor’ev’s Guide to the Plants Around Stalinabad (1953), S. S. Ikonnikov’s Guide to the Plants of the Pamirs (1963), V. I. Zapriagaeva’s Wild Fruits of Tadzhikistan (1964), B. M. Komarov’s Guide to the Plants of Northern Tadzhikistan (1967), and K. V. Staniukovich’s Flora of the Mountains of the USSR (1973). A map of the republic’s flora, compiled on the scale of 1 :1,000,000 by K. V. Staniukovich, G. T. Sidorenko, V. A. Nikitin, and P. N. Ovchinnikov, was published in 1958.

Scientific principles for the improvement and planting of forests in the Pamir-Alai Mountains (for wood, nuts, and erosion control) have been worked out at the Institute of Botany of the republic’s Academy of Sciences (founded 1941), headed by P. N. Ovchinnikov. The institute has also worked on the introduction of new species in agriculture and forestry and on the discovery and use of pastures. The phytochemical characteristics of various plant species, including medicinal plants, have been studied.

The Institute of Plant Physiology and Biophysics (founded 1964) of the Academy of Sciences of the Tadzhik SSR has studied the regulatory mechanisms of plant activity, the physiology of photosynthesis and ways of raising photosynthetic productivity (Iu. S. Nasyrov), the biochemistry and biophysics of photosynthesis, plant growth and development, and the correlation between genes and traits. The principles governing the transfer and metabolism of substances in the cotton plant have been studied in order to improve cotton-growing techniques.

The Pamir Biological Institute (founded 1969) has conducted comprehensive studies of the biological resources of the Pamirs, with emphasis on the physiological and biochemical characteristics of organisms living under high-altitude conditions and the rational use and reproduction of flora and fauna. Problems of genetics and breeding have been resolved, and a series of studies on the improvement and reclamation of pastures in the Pamirs has been completed (Kh. Iu. Iusufbekov).

The E. N. Pavlovskii Institute of Zoology and Parasitology (founded 1941), affiliated with the republic’s Academy of Sciences, has been engaged in fundamental research on the biology and biocenotic links of the main groups of invertebrates and vertebrates of Tadzhikistan. The results of this research have been summed up in the monographs Birds of Tadzhikistan (1940) by A. I. Ivanov, Poisonous Animals of Middle Asia (1950) by E. N. Pavlovskii, Aphids of Tadzhikistan and Adjacent Regions of Middle Asia (fasc. 1–2, 1962–69) by M. N. Narzikulov, and Birds (fasc. 1–2,1971–73) by I. A. Abdusaliamov. Together with scientists from the Tadzhik University and the Dushanbe and Leninabad pedagogical institutes, the institute’s researchers have conducted ichthyological and hydrobiological studies of the reservoirs of Tadzhikistan. An integrated system for controlling cotton pests has been developed and adopted (M. N. Narzikulov).

Agricultural sciences. The Institute of Farming under the republic’s Ministry of Agriculture does research aimed at improving the technology of raising cotton, cereals, and essential-oil crops. The institute’s V. P. Krasichkov and B. S. Sanginov are working on the breeding of Soviet strains of cotton, and V. N. Smol’skii, V. I. Tsulaia, and U. Eshankulov are developing new varieties of citrus fruits. New strains of fine-fibered cotton have also been developed. Various mutagens are being used to obtain new highly productive strains of cotton resistant to various diseases and pests. The institute operates four experiment stations.

Problems of improving soil fertility and combating erosion are studied at the Institute of Soil Science, also under the republic’s Ministry of Agriculture. The institute’s Vakhsh and Leninabad soil reclamation stations have worked out techniques of reclaiming swampy soils and solonchaks and eliminating secondary salin-ization of irrigated land. The development and application of closed horizontal and vertical drainage has been an important achievement in land reclamation. Maps of the soils of Tadzhikistan, accompanied by monographic descriptions, have been compiled. Various aspects of the geography, chemistry, physics, and genesis of soils have been explained, and soil classifications have been proposed. Many years of research by A. N. Maksumov and other scientists have led to the development of methods of working the soil that bring consistently high yields of dry-farming crops. Crop rotation based on eight, nine, or ten fields has been introduced in dry farming.

The scientists at the Institute of Livestock Raising under the republic’s Ministry of Agriculture have done genetic and selection work to raise livestock productivity. Over the years, a Soviet wool breed of goats was developed by I. A. Margulis and K. T. Karavaev, a Tadzhik breed of sheep by G. A. Aliev, and a new breed group of Darvaz meat and wool sheep by I. G. Lebedev.

Medicine. Medical research is conducted at the Dushanbe Institute of Epidemiology and Hygiene (founded 1955). Diseases of the digestive system have been studied under the direction of Kh. Kh. Mansurov at the Institute of Gastroenterology of the Academy of Sciences of the Tadzhik SSR. Organized in 1965 out of an institute of regional medicine, the institute has been conducting research on the clinical-functional and morphological symptoms of acute hepatitis, the effect of medicinal preparations on metabolic processes in diffuse diseases of the liver, and the symptoms of primary and secondary gastritis.

Technology. Research in technology is flourishing at various research institutes and higher educational institutions. The republic’s mechanical engineers are investigating the kinematics and dynamics of the basic regulators of weaving machines, and they are developing improved and more durable assemblies and units for agricultural machinery. Electronics engineers are working on ways of determining loads on power transmission lines, as well as on new electronic devices for mineral prospecting. In power and thermal engineering, planning and surveying is under way for the construction of new substations and grids and the rebuilding of existing ones. Work is also being done on the automation of production and the technology of automotive transportation, including the field testing of various types of motor vehicles at high altitudes and under hot climatic conditions.


Social sciences, PHILOSOPHY. The philosophical thought of the Tadzhik people and their ancestors developed within the mainstream of Iranian philosophy prior to the ninth century and as part of Arabic philosophy between the ninth and 15th centuries. An important aspect of Tadzhik culture, particularly its philosophical traditions, was its affinity with the cultures of other Middle Asian peoples. The religious and philosophical thought of the Iranian peoples dates from the Avesta, the sacred writings of Zoroastrianism, also known as Mazdaism. The Zoroastrian view of eternity as the primary substance gave rise to the doctrine of Zurvanism, within which a materialist current evolved that denied the creation of the world and the existence of god the creator and asserted the external existence of the universe.

During the disintegration of the slaveholding system and the emergence of feudal relations, Manichaeism spread in the middle of the third century and Mazdakism in the late fifth and early sixth centuries, both adopting the Zoroastrian doctrine of the struggle between Good and Evil. The social doctrine of Mazdakism called for justice and equality.

After the conquest of Middle Asia by the Arab Caliphate and the ascendancy of Islam, progressive thinkers turned to pre-Islamic Iranian doctrines, classical Greek science and philosophy, and the Indian intellectual tradition. Eastern Aristotelian-ism, developed by Avicenna and his followers, including Omar Khayyam, was widely accepted. Avicenna’s teachings contained certain materialist elements, such as the idea of the eternal nature of the material world and the sensationalist aspects of his theory of knowledge. The materialist tradition of Democritus was continued by Rhazes, who acknowledged the operation of natural laws in nature and society and affirmed the knowability of the world. The advanced ideas of al-Biruni, who propounded a scientific concept of nature that conflicted with the religious view of the world, gained a large following. The progressive line in philosophy, represented by Avicenna and his followers, was opposed by the adherents of kalam, the scholastic philosophy of Islam that arose in the eighth century and flourished until the 14th century. The exponents of kalam, notably al-Ghazzali and Fakh al-Din al-Razi, upheld the idea of the creation of the world and asserted its dependence on divine will.

Ismailism, a philosophical doctrine that evolved out of Neoplatonism and Aristotelianism, spread in the 11th century, influencing the views of Naser-e Khosrow. In their doctrine of the harmonious structure of the universe, the Ismailians compared its structure (the macrocosm) to that of the human body (the microcosm). Sufism, whose philosophical dogma was opposed to orthodox Islam in many respects, became an important religious movement between the tenth and 13th centuries. The theoretical foundations of Sufi doctrines were worked out by the Tadzhik-Persian thinkers Abu Said Maikhani, Kharakani, Sulami, Kushairi, Sanai, Attar, and Rumi. A heterogeneous current, Sufism combined in its more radical doctrines mystical pantheism with rational elements, humanistic ideas, and dialectical insights. Rumi believed that the world was permeated by a struggle between opposites striving for harmony and that things were to be understood through opposites. Abd al-Rahman Jami propounded a humanistic doctrine of the perfect man and a social utopia based on a just social system and equality.

From the 16th century intellectual life was dominated by idealist religious trends (kalam, dogmatic Muslim philosophy, ascetic Sufism), which were opposed by the progressive Tadzhik writers Binoi, Vasifi, and Saiyido Nasafi. At the time of Islamic hegemony, the philosophical doctrine propounded by Mirza Abdulkadir Bedil, a blend of Hinduism, Eastern Aristotelianism, Neoplatonism, and Sufism, had a certain progressive significance. Bedil exerted considerable influence on the development of the social thought of the Tadzhik and other peoples of Middle Asia.

After Middle Asia’s unification with Russia, a democratic enlightenment movement arose in Tadzhikistan under the influence of advanced Russian sociopolitical thought. Led by Akhmad Donish and his followers (Mukhammad Khairat, Doctor Sobir, Asiri, Aini), the members of the movement called for national progress and social justice and criticized the medieval feudal order.

After the establishment of Soviet power in Tadzhikistan, Marxism-Leninism gained ground, and systematic work on philosophical problems began in the 1940’s. Tadzhik specialists in philosophy, many of them trained at the scientific centers of Moscow and Leningrad, have given much attention to the history of Tadzhik philosophy and to the social thought of other Middle Asian peoples. S. Aini, A. A. Semenov, A. M. Bogoutdinov, Z. Sh. Radzhabov, M. Boltaev, G. A. Ashurov, M. Dinorshoev, and M. Radzhabov have analyzed the synthesis of the national and the international in the history of Tadzhik culture and philosophy. They have described the general and particular laws governing the development of Tadzhik philosophy and the nature of its interaction with other philosophical traditions, and they have exposed the reactionary character of European-centered and Asian-centered conceptions.

Current studies in dialectical and historical materialism, scientific communism, and the philosophy of science deal with the laws and categories of materialist dialectics, the objective laws of historical development and of man’s conscious activity, problems relating to the education of the new man and to the formation of socialist nations, and methodological questions in contemporary science. Important work in these areas is being done by S. Umarov, M. S. Asimov, S. B. Morochnik, V. I. Pripisnov, M. Gafarova, A. Tursunov, I. Sharipov, S. A. Radzhabov, K. Sabirov, and M. Kamilov. In their investigations of scientific atheism, A. Bazarov and R. Madzhidov are examining the development of the scientific materialist world view, studying the causes of the survival of religious vestiges and the ways of overcoming them, and critically analyzing various religious conceptions. Problems of sociology, ethics, and aesthetics are also treated. The leading philosophical institution is the philosophy department of the Academy of Sciences of the Tadzhik SSR.


HISTORICAL SCHOLARSHIP The beginning of historical knowledge among the ancestors of the Tadzhiks may be found in early antiquity. Many historical works written in Farsi and Arabic appeared in the ninth and tenth centuries, among them the History of Bukhara by Muhammad al-Narshakhi and the Book of Kings (957), one of the sources of Firdausi’s epic Shah-namah. Tadzhik historical writings included universal histories, histories of dynasties, rulers, regions, and cities, biographies, and memoirs. Especially valuable are the works of al-Tabari, Rashid ad-Din, and Saifi Khiravi (13th century), Mirkhwand Khwandamir (15th and 16th centuries), and Ruzbekhon (17th century).

In the 19th century progressive Tadzhik historiography was represented by Akhmad Donish, who angrily denounced the feudal rulers and feudal system of the Bukhara Khanate. Scholarship on the history of the Tadzhiks appeared after the October Revolution. The Society for the Study of Tadzhikistan and the Iranian Peoples Beyond Its Borders, established in 1925, organized a number of expeditions and published works on the history, archaeology, ethnography, and anthropology of the Tadzhiks. Its members included the eminent Russian scholars A. A. Semenov and M.S. Andreev. Historical research was promoted by the Committee for Tadzhik Studies, organized in 1930 under the auspices of the People’s Commissariat for Education of the Tadzhik SSR and reorganized two years later as the State Scientific Research Institute (GNU). Also founded in 1930 was the history, language, and literature section of the Tadzhik Base of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR, which in 1941 became a separate institute within the Tadzhik Branch of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR. The Institute of History, Archaeology, and Ethnography, now the Akhmad Donish Institute of History, was created in 1951 within the Academy of Sciences of the Tadzhik SSR. At the same time, the Institute of Party History was established under the auspices of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Tadzhikistan. Both institutes became major centers of historical scholarship in the republic. Historical research is also flourishing in the history departments of the republic’s higher educational institutions.

A number of popular-science works reflecting the successes achieved in the economic and cultural development of Soviet Tadzhikistan were published in the 1930’s. The Russian scholars V. V. Bartol’d and A. Iu. Iakubovskii played a major role in the study of the history of prerevolutionary Tadzhikistan. In 1925, Bartol’d published the essay The Tadzhiks and a number of works on the history of Middle Asia that gave considerable attention to Tadzhikistan. The leading higher educational institutions and scientific research institutes of Moscow, Leningrad, and Tashkent have helped train cadres of Tadzhik historians armed with the Marxist-Leninist methodology. Historical research on both prerevolutionary and Soviet Tadzhikistan has expanded rapidly in the postwar years.

Soviet historiography has focused on the study of production relations, the history of the class struggle, and the role of the popular masses. In their work on the socioeconomic and political history of Tadzhikistan, Soviet historians are examining the socioeconomic and political life of various khanates, beylics, and regions, questions relating to the unification of Middle Asia with Russia and the emergence of capitalist relations, the growth of the revolutionary movement, and the development of social and political thought and democratic enlightenment. These subjects have been treated by S. Aini, Z. Sh. Radzhabov, B. I. Iskandarov, O. R. Madzhlisov, A. M. Mukhtarov, and M. B. Babakhanov. The first comprehensive work to be published was B. G. Gafurov’s Concise History of the Tadzhik People, covering the prerevolutionary period. In 1972, Gafurov published The Tadzhiks, a basic work on the history of the Tadzhik people in antiquity and the Middle Ages.

In studies on the history of Soviet society, much attention has been devoted to the victory of the Great October Socialist Revolution and the establishment of Soviet power in the republic, to the Civil War, and to the building of socialism. T. R. Karimov, G. Kh. Khaidarov, and A. V. Makashov have described the struggle to establish and consolidate Soviet power in various parts of the republic, and M. I. Irkaev has examined questions pertaining to the Civil War in Tadzhikistan. S. A. Radzhabov and A. M. Bogoutdinov have written about the consolidation of the Tadzhik socialist nation and the formation of the Tadzhik state.

Socioeconomic relations in the Tadzhik kishlak (village) and the history of the victory and strengthening of the kolkhoz system in Tadzhikistan are treated in works by Kh. N. Drikker, V. A. Kozachkovskii, B. A. Antonenko, and K. P. Marsakov and in the joint monograph Studies in the History of Kolkhoz Development in Tadzhikistan (1917–1965). Other collaborative works by Tadzhik historians deal with the course and characteristic features of industrialization in Tadzhikistan, the contemporary development of the republic’s industry, and the main stages and characteristics of the formation of the working class in Tadzhikistan. The two-volume joint monograph The History of the Working Class of Tadzhikistan (1917–1970) sums up regional research on the history of the working class in Soviet Tadzhikistan. Various phases of the cultural revolution are examined in the works of Z. Sh. Radzhabov and M. R. Shukurov.

A considerable body of literature has been published on the history of Tadzhikistan during the Great Patriotic War. The heroism of Tadzhik fighting men on the various fronts and the selfless works of the workers in the rear are shown in the works of L. P. Sechkina and D. Usmanov.

The writing of the three-volume History of the Tadzhik People (five books) and The History of the Tadzhik SSR, a textbook for higher educational institutions, was facilitated by the existence of excellent studies of individual problems relating to the history of the Tadzhik people and by the accumulation of much factual material. Another important work, Studies in the History of the Communist Party of Tadzhikistan, deals with the activity of the party organization during the building of socialism and communism. Collections of documents have been issued on the history of the party, industrialization, the collectivization of agriculture, and cultural development.

Planned archaeological research was undertaken only in the Soviet era. The Tadzhik Archaeological Expedition, headed by A. Iu. Iakubovskii, was formed in 1946, and an archaeology and numismatics section was organized in 1952 at the A. Donish Institute of History under the republic’s Academy of Sciences. By the mid-1970’s, the historical geography of ancient regions of Tadzhikistan had been established, and surveys and archaeological maps of nearly all the republic’s regions had been prepared. Archaeologists are studying sites dating from the communal and slaveholding periods. Considerable material has been collected on life in the Middle Ages, and the economy and culture of the medieval cities are being studied. Excavations of fortresses in the western Pamirs and northern Tadzhikistan have yielded material on the history of Tadzhik fortifications. Research has begun on the ancient irrigation system of the Vakhsh River valley. Valuable archaeological contributions have been made by M. M. D’iakonov, A. P. Okladnikov, A. M. Belenitskii, B. A. Litvinskii, A. M. Mandel’shtam, N. N. Negmatov, V. A. Ranov, E. A. Davidovich, and V. L. Voronina.

Scholarly ties among the historians of the Middle Asian republics and Kazakhstan are growing stronger. Joint sessions on current problems of historiography have become a tradition. The historians of Tadzhikistan, Uzbekistan, Kirghizia, Turkmenistan, and Kazakhstan have issued two major collaborative works: The Victory of Soviet Power in Middle Asia and Kazakhstan and The History of the Communist Organizations of Middle Asia. Joint work is also being done on the history of the working class, agrarian socialist transformations, and cultural development. The republic’s historians are participating in the writing of general works on the history of the USSR, on the history of historiography, and on the creation of national states. The study of the history of Soviet Tadzhikistan has shown the experience of the Tadzhik people in taking the noncapitalist, socialist path of development, which enabled them to overcome economic and cultural backwardness in a short time and to build socialism together with the fraternal peoples of the USSR.

ECONOMICS. The inception of economic thought in Tadzhikistan dates from the early Middle Ages. Valuable economic information may be found in works written between the ninth and 14th centuries by the thinkers Abu Nasr al-Farabi, Avicenna, Abu Hamid al-Ghazzali, Nasir al-Din al-Tusi, Naser-e Khosrow, Nizam al-Mulk, and Fadlullah Rashid ad-Din. In the 15th and 16th centuries the scholars Jalal al-Din Davvani, Muhammad Mirkhwand, and Khwandamir dealt with questions of taxation policy and finance. Proposals for economic reforms were put forward by many learned men in the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries. Most of the proposed reforms, however, were narrow in scope and were chiefly intended to stimulate the development of handicrafts. The authors of the reforms did not know of radical ways of changing the social and economic conditions in Tadzhikistan. Akhmad Donish, the founder of enlightened sociopolitical thought in Middle Asia, saw the urgency of overcoming the economic stagnation of many centuries.

After Middle Asia’s inclusion in Russia, a number of Russian scholars published works containing, among other information, general descriptions of the region’s economy. The most notable of these works were written by V. N. Veber, A. Gubarevich-Radobyl’skii, S. I. Gulishambarov, V. V. Zaorskaia, K. A. Alek-sander, A. A. Kushakevich, D. N. Logafet, and N. I. Malakhovskii. Owing to the lack of adequate statistical data, most of these works were superficial.

A scientific approach to the economic problems of Tadzhikistan became possible only after the October Revolution. The works of Iu. I. Poslavskii, B. Segal, G. Chernyi, A. P. Demidov, N. I. Balashov, and V. Balkhov, published in the 1920’s, sought to give a comprehensive account of the republic’s economy.

In the 1930’s and 1940’s, the country’s leading scientific centers gave Tadzhikistan much assistance in finding ways of overcoming its economic backwardness. The work of the Tadzhik-Pamir Comprehensive Expedition of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR became the basis for a conference on the productive forces of Tadzhikistan. The materials of the conference, published in 1933, gave the first scientific assessment of the republic’s prospects for developing its productive forces. The study of major economic problems became possible only in the early 1950’s, by which time the republic had its own highly trained economists.

Tadzhikistan’s economists are working on problems of political economy, the history of the national economy, long-range forecasting of the development and distribution of productive forces, the effectiveness of social production, growth rates and proportions in the national economy, the economics of various branches of the national economy, and mathematical methods of planning. Major contributions have been made by R. Iu. Iusufbekov, Kh. B. Salbiev, T. M. Mirakilov, V. G. Li, O. G. Toshev, Kh. S. Saidmuradov, R. K. Rakhimov, I. K. Narzikulov, T. N. Nazarov, K. Sh. Dzhuraev, D. Kh. Karimov, B. R. Fatidinov, M. M. Mamadnazarbekov, Kh. Z. Zainiddinov, N. K. Kaiumov, I. A. Aerorov, Ia. T. Bronshtein, and A. G. Khodzhibaev. The republic’s economists also work directly at industrial enterprises and in kolkhozes and sovkhozes, where they assist in introducing the scientific organization of labor, mechanization, automation, and the use of chemical processes in production, thereby strengthening the links between science and production.

The main centers of economic research are the Institute of Economics of the republic’s Academy of Sciences (founded 1964), the Scientific Research Institute of Economics and Economic-Mathematical Planning Methods (with a computer center), established under the republic’s State Planning Commission in 1971, the Council for the Study of Productive Forces, organized in 1951 by the republic’s Academy of Sciences, and the Economics Department of the Tadzhik Scientific Research Institute of Farming under the republic’s Ministry of Agriculture. Economic specialists are trained in the economics departments of the V. I. Lenin Tadzhik University, the Tadzhik Agricultural Institute, and the Tadzhik Polytechnic Institute.


JURISPRUDENCE. Along with philosophical theses, ideas about state law were put forth in the works of the great Middle Asian thinkers Abu Nasr al-Farabi and Avicenna and in various treatises, such as the 11th-century Book on the Governing of the State. It was not until after the October Revolution, however, that jurisprudence developed in Tadzhikistan. Established in 1949, the law department of the Tadzhik University has played an important role in promoting legal scholarship.

A number of Tadzhik legal scholars, notably S. A. Radzhabov and D. D. Degtiarenko, are studying problems relating to the creation and perfection of national statehood among the Middle Asian peoples and to the emergence of the Tadzhik people’s national state. Several monographs have been devoted to the role of the state and law in the building of socialism and communism and to the theoretical principles of the noncapitalist path of state development. Current research in civil law is reflected in the Collected Works of the Subdepartment of Civil Law and Procedure of the Tadzhik University, published in 1970. The state structure and the strengthening of socialist legality are treated in works by Sh. Razykov, F. Takhirov, A. M. Mavlianov, A. Imanov, S. Kasymov, R. S. Gimpelevich, and V. G. Melku-mov. D. R. Dzhalilov has written on criminalistics. A Russo-Tadzhik dictionary of legal terminology has been published.

Tadzhik jurists are participating in the codification of legislation and the preparation of the Collected Existing Legislation of the Union Republic. They are also collaborating on various joint works, such as the History of the Soviet State and Law (1968) and Soviet State Law (1971).

Legal research is done in the law department of the Tadzhik University, in the republic’s research laboratory of judicial expertise, in the Tadzhik branch of the All-Union Correspondence Institute of Law, and in various legal research institutions affiliated with government departments.

Scientific institutions. An extensive system of scientific institutions has been established in Tadzhikistan under Soviet rule. In 1974 the republic had 57 scientific institutions, including higher schools, compared to 30 such institutions in 1940. As of Jan. 1, 1975, there were 6,400 scientific workers in Tadzhikistan, including 35 academicians, members, and corresponding members and more than 2,000 doctors and candidates of sciences. (In 1940 there were 400 scientific workers.) The leading scientific center is the Academy of Sciences of the Tadzhik SSR, comprising three departments and 18 research institutions.

Research on party history is conducted at the Institute of Party History under the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Tadzhikistan, a branch of the Institute of Marxism-Leninism under the Central Committee of the CPSU. The scientific institutions of the Academy of Sciences of the Tadzhik SSR maintain strong ties with scientific research institutions in the fraternal Union republics, including those of Moscow, Leningrad, and Novosibirsk. The academies of sciences and specialized institutes of Tadzhikistan, Uzbekistan, Kirghizia, Turkmenia, and Kazakhstan exchange scientific information and conduct joint theoretical and applied research in such fields as geology, seismology and earthquake-resistant construction, physics, astronomy, biology, the development of mountainous regions, irrigation, hydroelectric energy production, economics, history, language, and folklore. The research institutes of the Academy of Sciences of the Tadzhik SSR maintain contacts with scientists and scientific centers in Czechoslovakia, Bulgaria, Yugoslavia, the USA, Great Britain, India, Iran, Pakistan, Afghanistan, France, Japan, and Canada. The scientists of Tadzhikistan present papers at international forums and participate in international scientific programs, such as the International Geophysical Year and the International Years of the Quiet Sun.

Along with the Academy of Sciences of the Tadzhik SSR, higher educational institutions and specialized research institutes affiliated with ministries and government departments carry on research in the republic. In working on problems of planning and forecasting in industry, agriculture, public health, education, and socialist culture, these research institutions are promoting economic and cultural development.



Asimov, M. S. “Nauka Sovetskogo Tadzhikistana.” In Lenin i sovremennaia nauka [collection of articles], book 2. Moscow, 1970.
Asimov, M. S. “Sovetskii Tadzhikistan i ego nauka.” In Nauka Soiuza SSR. Moscow, 1972.
Tadzhikskaia Sovetskaia Sotsialisticheskaia Respublika. Editor in chief, M. S. Asimov. Dushanbe, 1974.
Nauka Sovetskogo Tadzhikistana. Dushanbe, 1974.
Umarov, S. U. Rastsvet nauki v Tadzhikistane. Stalinabad, 1960.
Radzhabov, Z. Sh. Iz istorii obshchestvenno-politicheskoi mysli tadzhikskogo naroda vo vtoroi polovine XIX i nachale XX vv. Stalinabad, 1957.
Grigorian, S. N. Iz istorii filosofii Srednei Azii i irana VII-XII vv. Moscow, 1960.
Bogoutdinov, A. M. Ocherki po istorii tadzhikskoi filosofii. Dushanbe, 1961.
Istoriia filosofii v SSSR, vols. 1–4. Moscow, 1965–72.

Before the October Revolution of 1917, the Tadzhik people did not have their own press. National publishing and journalism emerged in Tadzhikistan only after the establishment of Soviet power. The first printing plant was organized in 1924 in Dushanbe, and the first Tadzhik state publishing house was founded the next year, although many of its early publications were printed in Samarkand, Tashkent, Leningrad, and other cities. The Dushanbe Printing Combine, the republic’s main printing plant, was built in 1934.

A number of publishing houses were organized between the late 1940’s and the 1960’s. Irfon, formed out of the Tadzhik State Publishing House in 1964, the largest publishing house, accounted for more than 80 percent of the printed output. The other major publishing houses are Donish (1964), Maorif (founded in 1958 as Tadzhikuchpedgiz and renamed in 1975), and Statistika (1948). In 1974, 854 book and pamphlet titles were published, totaling 6.3 million copies; 399 of the titles (4.1 million copies) were in the Tadzhik language. The Chief Editorial Board of the Tadzhik Soviet Encyclopedia issued the volume The Tadzhik Soviet Socialist Republic in 1974.

The first Tadzhik newspaper, Idi todzhik (Tadzhik’s Holiday), was published on Mar. 15,1925, in Dushanbe by the Tadzhik Organizational Bureau of the Communist Party (Bolshevik) of Uzbekistan and by the Central Revolutionary Committee and Council of Trade Unions of the Tadzhik ASSR. The paper’s name has been changed several times; in 1955 it became a republic newspaper entitled Todzhikistoni Soveti (Soviet Tadzhikistan). The first Tadzhik newspaper, called Shu’ lai inkilob (Flame of Revolution), was published by the Samarkand Oblast Committee from April 1919 to December 1921. The sociopolitical, popular science, and pedagogical monthly Rokhbari donish (Guide to Knowledge) was published in Tadzhik from August 1927 to the end of 1930.

In 1974, the republic had 61 newspapers, including seven republic-wide, two oblast, one autonomous oblast, seven city, 34 raion, and ten local papers with a one-time circulation of more than a million copies and an annual circulation exceeding 217 million copies. Fifty-one of the papers were published in Tadzhik. The Tadzhik-language republic newspapers are Todzhikistoni Soveti (Soviet Tadzhikistan), Komsomoli Todzhikiston (Komsomol Member of Tadzhikistan, since 1930), Pioneri Todzhikiston (Pioneer of Tadzhikistan, since 1929), and Maorif va madaniyat (Education and Culture, since 1932). The republic newspapers Kommunist Tadzhikistana (Communist of Tadzhikistan, since 1925) and Komsomolas Tadzhikistana (Komsomol Member of Tadzhikistan, since 1938) are published in Russian, and Sovet Todzhikistoni (Soviet Tadzhikistan, since 1929) is issued in Uzbek.

Some 51 periodicals were published, including 14 magazines, 12 scholarly serial publications (transactions), and 23 bulletins with a total annual circulation of more than 17.4 million copies. Magazines devoted to party, sociopolitical, and Komsomol affairs are published, as well as popular science, literary, and satirical magazines and specialized scientific journals. The leading Tadzhik-language magazines are Kommunisti Todzhikiston (Communist of Tadzhikistan, since 1936), Maktabi Soveti (Soviet School, since 1926), Sadoi shark (Voice of the East, since 1938), Zanoni Todzhikiston (Women of Tadzhikistan, since 1951), Mash”al (Campfire, since 1952), and Khorpushtak (Hedgehog, since 1953). Three journals are issued in Tadzhik and Russian: Agriculture of Tadzhikistan (since 1947), Papers of the Academy of Sciences of the Tadzhik SSR (since 1951), and Proceedings of the Academy of Sciences of the Tadzhik SSR (since 1952). The magazines Public Health of Tadzhikistan (since 1954) and The Pamirs (since 1959) are published in Russian.

The Tadzhik Telegraph Agency (TadzhikTA) has existed since 1933. Radio broadcasting was introduced in the republic in 1928, and the Dushanbe Television Center was opened in 1959. In 1974, Republic Radio broadcast four programs, in Tadzhik, Russian, and Uzbek, for a total of 26 hours a day. Republic Television is on the air 11 hours a day. Radio and television broadcasts from Moscow and Tashkent are also relayed.


Tadzhik written literature has its roots in ancient oral folk poetry, which was reflected in the written works created by both Western and Eastern Iranian peoples living in the area now occupied by Iran, Afghanistan, and Middle Asia. Because of the common historical development of the Tadzhik and Persian peoples, their classical literature, written in Farsi (Dari) between the ninth and 15th centuries, may be regarded as a single literature, called Persian-Tadzhik, or Persian-language, literature by modern scholars. From the 16th century, state and religious differentiation resulted in the divergence of the Tadzhik, Persian, Afghan, and other literatures.

Folklore. The recording of Tadzhik folklore began only in the 19th century, so that the material gathered dates from relatively recent times. Nevertheless, ancient Iranian and medieval Persian-Tadzhik written literary works give a general idea of the development of the folkloric traditions of the Tadzhik people. In all probability, by the early first millennium B.C., the oral poetry of such Iranian peoples as the Bactrians, Sogdians, Khwarazmites, Parthians, and Sacae was developing in two directions: cosmogonic and theogonic myth-making and the creation of heroic epics. The ancient epics portrayed “culture heroes,” who opposed the forces of evil and darkness.

Between the middle of the first millennium B.C. and the middle of the first millennium A.D. folklore came increasingly to mirror historical reality. Such ideas as equality and the necessity of universal prosperity under a just ruler were reflected in the epics, some of which depicted social utopias. New genres appeared, among them chomas (short verse tales), ritual songs, parables, proverbs, sayings, and ode-debates similar to tensons.

When written literature in the Iranian languages virtually ceased to exist in the seventh and eighth centuries as a result of the invasion of the Caliphate’s armies, folklore continued to develop, stimulating the literary renaissance of the next two centuries. From the ninth century oral folk creativity and Tadzhik classical literature developed in close interaction. Abu Abdallah Rudaki (c. 860–941), the founder of Persian-language poetry, and his contemporaries borrowed imagery, epic and fairy tale motifs, and various genres from folk poetry. Subsequently, folklore had a marked influence on the development not only of poetry but also of prose, for such genres as the tale and anecdote had existed in folklore for centuries.

While carrying on the best traditions of the past, Tadzhik folklore of the Soviet period has been infused with new ideas and has been artistically renewed. Works celebrating the revolution, Soviet power, and the socialist transformations in the Tadzhik land have appeared. Among famous 20th-century folk poets (khafizes) are Bobo Yunus Khudoydodzade (1870–1945), Khigmat Rizo (born 1896), Yusuf Vafo (1882–1945), Saidali Vali-zade (1900–71), and Khamid Said (born 1892). Both prerevolutionary and contemporary Tadzhik folk works are gathered and studied by Soviet folklorists, and collections of folklore, including scholarly series, are published in large editions.

Ancient literature. Achaemenid cuneiform inscriptions and the Avesta, the sacred book of Zoroastrianism, are the only surviving examples of Iranian written literature dating from before the third century A.D. Composed over a long period of time, the Avesta preserves traces of mythology and popular notions concerning Good and Evil and the natural world. The principle that grants human beings earthly and spiritual happiness is symbolized by the figure of Zarathustra. The oldest part of the Avesta, the Gathas, was probably written in Khorasan and Middle Asia.

Pahlavi literature, written in Pahlavi (Middle Persian) and other Middle Iranian languages (Parthian, Sogdian, and Khwarazmite), flourished from the third to the ninth century. Extant works attest to the existence of Pahlavi epic tales, prose works, and small poetic genres. The most outstanding literary achievements are Kalila and Dimna, Khvatay-namak (one of the main sources of Firdausi’s Shah-nameh), Yadgar Zareran (the tale of the hero Zarer and his son), Drakhti Asurik (The Assyrian Tree), and the Book of the Deeds of Ardashir Papakan, about the founder of the Sassanid Empire.

After the fall of the Sassanid Empire in the second half of the seventh century, Arabic was forcibly imposed on the population, serving as the only literary language for the next two centuries. The native population’s protest against the conquerors was reflected in the Shuubite movement (from the Arabic shuub, “peoples”), which advocated the revival of ancient cultural traditions. Under the influence of Shuubite ideas, indigenous poets, writing in Arabic, introduced ancient Iranian traditions and local themes into literature. Foremost among these poets were al-Khuraymi, al-Bashar ibn Burd (died 787), and Abu Nuvas (762–815). The Farsi literary language, based on Middle Iranian dialects and containing Arabic elements, evolved by the ninth century. A new literature developed in this language, which was initially called Parsi-Dari.

Classical literature. Classical Tadzhik literature may be divided into three periods. The literature of the first period, which lasted from the ninth to the 15th centuries, is a Persian-language literature that was shared by the Iranians and the Tadzhiks. The second period includes the Tadzhik literature that flourished in Middle Asia from the 16th to the first half of the 19th century. The third period encompasses the Tadzhik enlightenment literature of the second half of the 19th century and the literature of the early 20th century.

The ninth and tenth centuries, when the new Persian-language literature was developing intensively, are rightly considered the “golden age” of classical Tadzhik poetry. Literature was enriched by new ideas and themes, and the main genres and artistic forms were established. The center of the new culture and literature was Middle Asia and Khorasan (eastern Iran and part of Afghanistan), where the major cities were Samarkand, Merv, and Balkh. Bukhara, the capital of the Samanids, attracted the most gifted literary men of the time, among them the great poet Rudaki. Ancient folk traditions and heroic motifs and pre-Islamic heroes and just rulers, reinterpreted from the standpoint of Islam, were revived in poetry, prose, and philosophical didactic works. Rudaki, Abu Shakur of Balkh (born 915; year of death unknown), Abu al-Hasan Kisai (953–1002), and Daqiqi (died c. 977) preached humanism and justice and denounced tyranny. Firdausi composed his monumental epic Shah-nameh in the late tenth and early 11th centuries.

After the disintegration of the Samanid state in the late tenth century, the center of literary development shifted to Ghazni (southern Afghanistan), the capital of the Ghaznavid rulers, who were enthusiastic patrons of courtly panegyric poetry. The leading poets of the period were Onsori (died 1039), Farrokhi (died 1038), Manuchehri (died 1041), and Masud-e Sad-e Salman (died c. 1121).

In the late tenth century, Sufi mysticism spread into Iran and Middle Asia, engendering its own literature. Other religious and philosophical ideas also influenced literature. The Ismailians had an ardent spokesman in the poet and thinker Naser-e Khosrow (born 1004; died after 1072).

The 12th century saw the perfection of such lyric genres as the qasida and the ghazal. Despite the influence of court poetry, these genres increasingly reflected current social issues. Lyric poetry also thrived among urban artisans. The freethinking and hedonistic lyrics of Omar Khayyam (born 1048; died after 1122) are written in the folk rubai, or quatrain.

Genghis Khan’s invasion in the early 13th century dealt a heavy blow to literary development, primarily in Middle Asia, which suffered the most ferocious and devastating attacks. Literary life was stifled here for nearly two centuries. Meanwhile, Persian-language literature continued to develop in the areas that had escaped destruction or had been little affected by the invasion: northern India (Amir Khosrow Dehlavi), southern Iran (Muslihuddin Sadi and his contemporaries), and Asia Minor (Jalal al-Din Rumi). This literature fulfilled a great historic mission by disseminating humanistic ideas during the Mongol domination and Tamerlane’s conquests.

Literary life gradually revived in Middle Asia in the 15th century, when Herat became a major cultural and literary center. Under the last Timurids, Herat attracted the best poets and writers not only of Middle Asia but also of Iran and Afghanistan. The leading men of letters, the Tadzhik poet Abd al-Rahman Jami (1414–92) and the Uzbek poet Alisher Navoi (1441–1501), gave poetic expression to the advanced ideas of their time and promoted the interaction and mutual enrichment of the Tadzhik and Uzbek literatures.

Diverging from the mainstream of Persian-language literature, Tadzhik literature developed independently from the 16th to the early 19th century. In the 17th and 18th centuries relatively close ties existed between Tadzhik literature and the Persian-language literature of India, one of whose greatest poets, Mirza Abdulkadir Bedil (1644–1721), strongly influenced Tadzhik literature, This period did not produce any major, broadly conceived works, but many poets from the artisan milieu described the hard lot of the oppressed, called for justice, and exposed the social evils of feudal society. Noteworthy poets include the weaver Saiido Nasafi (born c. 1650; died between 1707 and 1711), Fitrat Zarduz (1657 to the early 18th century), and Mirza Sadyk (died 1819).

An enlightenment movement appeared in Tadzhik literature in the latter half of the 19th century, partly owing to the progressive influence of Russian culture after Middle Asia’s union with Russia. The movement was headed by Akhmad Donish (1827–97), who denounced the despotism of the Bukhara Khanate, opposed medieval scholasticism and religious dogma, urged the study of secular disciplines, and proposed a program for reorganizing the state system along European lines. Donish’s views were shared by the poets and writers Rakhmatulla Vozekh (1818–94), Shamsiddin Shakhin (1859–93), and Muhammad Khairat (1878–1902). Realistic in its orientation, Tadzhik enlightenment literature introduced new poetic and prose genres (realistic short story, philosophical romantic tale) and made notable strides in democratizing the literary language.

In the early 20th century, the writers Sadriddin Aini (1878–1954), Toshkhodzha Asiri (1864–1916), and Mirza Siradzh (1877–1913) not only continued the best traditions of the enlightenment literature but also helped bridge the gulf between literature and the life of the people by giving realistic depictions of the social contradictions of the time, denouncing exploiters, and disseminating knowledge among the people.

Soviet Tadzhik literature. The Great October Socialist Revolution opened a new era in the long history of Tadzhik literature. From the first days of the revolution, Tadzhik literature took up the cause of liberating the oppressed people from exploitation and establishing Soviet power in Tadzhikistan. The first literary work to serve the revolution was the “March of Freedom” (1918), written by Aini, the founder of Soviet Tadzhik literature. Immediately after the revolution, a group of writers emerged whose subsequent works dealt with the social changes of the late 1920’s. They included Pairav Sulaimoni (1899–1933), Mukham-edzhan Rakhimi (1901–68), Dzhalol Ikrami (born 1909), Sukhaili Dzhavkharizade (1900–64), and Mukhiddin Aminzade (1904–66). An important poet of the 1920’s was the revolutionary Abul’kasim Lakhuti (1887–1957), who immigrated to the USSR in 1922 and became one of the founders of Soviet Tadzhik poetry. The poetry of these years praised the people’s revolutionary spirit, appealed to the people to struggle against the old order and the enemies of the Soviet regime, promoted the cultural revolution, and championed the emancipation of women. Aini’s first major prose works appeared at this time—the novella Odina, published in 1924 as The Adventures of a Poor Tadzhik, and the novel Dokhunda (1930).

During the 1930’s, when the republic was undergoing great changes, Tadzhik writers portrayed the new man, the builder of communism. A number of talented young writers appeared on the literary scene at the beginning of the decade, among them Mirzo Tursun-zade (1911–77), Abdusalom Dekhoti (1911–62), Rakhim Dzhalil (born 1909), Khakim Karim (1905–42), Mirsaid Mirshakar (born 1912), and Satym Ulug-zoda (born 1911). Socialist realism became firmly established in literature.

During the Great Patriotic War (1941–45), Tadzhik literature, like the other literatures of the USSR, mobilized its forces for the struggle against fascism. Some writers fought on the battlefield, including Khabib lusufi (1914–45), Karim, Liutfullo Buzurgzade (1909–43), Fatekh Niiazi (born 1916), and Boku Rakhim-zade (born 1910). Others described and glorified the heroism of Soviet fighting men and partisans, as well as the labor of the kolkhoz and industrial workers in the rear, in articles, essays, lyric and narrative poems, plays, short stories, and reports from the front lines. Tadzhik writers evoked the nation’s heroic past and wrote about internationalism, the friendship of peoples, and Soviet patriotism. These were the themes of Aini’s articles and essays, Lakhuti’s narrative poem Tania’s Victory (1942), Tursun-zade’s The Son of His Motherland (1942), and the poetry of Dekhoti, Mirshakar, and Rakhimi.

Although poetry remained the leading genre in the postwar years, prose and dramaturgy developed more confidently. The portrayal of the modern man—a working man and builder of communism—was central to all the literary genres from the late 1940’s. In the first postwar decade, a number of Tadzhik works became famous throughout the Soviet Union: Tursun-zade’s cycle of poems Indian Ballad (1947–48) and his narrative poem Khasan-arbakesh (1954), Mirshakar’s narrative poems The Turbulent Piandzh (1949) and Lenin in the Pamirs (1955), F. Niiazi’s war novel Loyalty (parts 1–2, 1949–58), Ulug-zoda’s novel Renewed Land (1949–53), and Dzhalil’s novel Shurab (1959–65). Aini’s Remembrances, reflecting the history of the Tadzhik people over several decades, was published in four parts between 1949 and 1954.

During the 1960’s and 1970’s, as the thematic range of Tadzhik literature broadened, its internationalist orientation became more marked. The hero of Tursun-zade’s epic poem From the Ganges to the Kremlin (1969–70) travels the great distance from India to Moscow, to Lenin, in search of truth and justice. Writers have treated historical as well as contemporary themes. Noteworthy works on historical subjects include Ikrami’s novel The Twelve Gates of Bukhara (1967–68), Ulug-zoda’s novel Vose (1967), and the stories of Rasul Khadizade (born 1928). A number of writers who began publishing during the war or early postwar years continue to perfect their craft. They include the poets Amindzhan Shukukhi (born 1923), Faizullo Ansori (born 1931), Gaffor Mirzo (born 1929), and Mukhiddin Farkhat (born 1924) and the prose writers Fazliddin Mukhammadiev (born 1928) and Khabibullo Nazarov (born 1907). Several writers are introducing their own themes and styles, among them Mumin Kanoatov (born 1932), Loik Sheraliev (born 1941), Kutbi Kirom (born 1932), Sorbon (born 1940), and Dzhuma Odinaev (born 1930).

Tadzhik dramaturgy arose in the 1930’s, when Ikrami’s The Enemy (1933) and Tursun-zade’s Verdict (1934) were staged by the national theater. Another popular early play was Ulug-zoda’s Redsticks (1941). Among the best wartime plays were Ikrami’s A Mother’s Heart (1942), its sequel Nadir’s House (1943, with A. Faiko), and Ulug-zoda’s In the Fire (1944). Since the 1950’s, the themes of Tadzhik plays have become increasingly diversified. Mirshakar’s My City (1951) portrays the life of the Soviet intelligentsia, and Ulug-zoda’s Rudaki (1958) deals with the history of the national culture. The coming of Soviet power is depicted in Hurricane, written jointly by Gani Abdullo (born 1912) and Shamsi Kiiamov (born 1920), and in Abdullo’s plays The Flame of Freedom (1964) and Soldiers of the Revolution (1970).

Tadzhik children’s literature has come a long way since the 1920’s, when Aini and Lakhuti wrote the first poems for children. Today, the leading children’s writers are Mirshakar, Abdumalik Bakhori (born 1927), and Gul’chekhra Suleimanova (born 1928).

Soviet Tadzhik literary scholarship was founded by Aini, who published several critical articles in the 1920’s. E. S. Bertel’s (1890–1957) and Nosirdzhon Masumi (1915–74) initiated the study of classical and modern Tadzhik literature. Important work in this field continues to be done by A. N. Boldyrev (born 1909), 1. S. Braginskii (born 1905), Abdulgani Mirzoev (born 1908), Sharif Khuseinzade (born 1907), Khalik Mirzozade (born 1911), Sakhib Tabarov (born 1924), Mukhammad Shukurov (born 1926), Shavkat Niiazi (born 1928), and Atakhon Saifullaev (born 1933). Scholarly research is conducted at the Rudaki Institute of Language and Literature and the Institute of Oriental Studies, both under the Academy of Sciences of the Tadzhik SSR, and at the Tadzhik University.

Diverse and extensive links exist between Tadzhik literature and the literatures of other peoples of the USSR, as well as foreign literatures. The works of the classical poets have been translated into many languages, and the Soviet authors Aini, Tursun-zade, Ikrami, and Mirshakar are well known not only in the USSR but also abroad. Moreover, Tadzhik and Iranian literary scholars have been working closely on problems pertaining to the history of their classical literature.

The Writers’ Union of the Tadzhik SSR was established in 1934, the year that the first writers’ congress was convened. Subsequently, writers’ congresses were held in 1947, 1954, 1959, 1966,1971, and 1976.


Mirzoev, A. M. Saiido Nasafi i ego mesto v istorii tadzhikskoi literatury. Dushanbe, 1954.
Braginskii, I. S. Iz istorii tadzhikskoi narodnoipoezii. Moscow, 1956.
Braginskii, I. S. Iz istorii persidskoi i tadzhikskoi literatur. Moscow, 1972.
Bertel’s, E. E. Istoriia persidsko-tadzhikskoi literatury. Moscow, 1960.
Ocherki istorii tadzhikskoi sovetskoi literatury. Moscow, 1961.
Istoriia persidskoi i tadzhikskoi literatury. Edited by Ian Ripka. Moscow, 1970.
Aini, S. Sobr. soch., vol. 6: Ocherki i stat’i. Moscow, 1975.
Safa, Z. Tarikh-e adabiyyat dar Iran, vols. 1–3. Tehran, 1339–42 A.H. (1960–63).
Amonov, R. Lirikai halqii tojik. Dushanbe, 1968.
Khodizoda, R. Adabiyoti tojik dar nimai dvuvvūmi asri XIX, vol. 1. Dushanbe, 1968.
Shukurov, M. Didi estetikii khalq va nasri realistī. Dushanbe, 1973.
Karimov, U. Adabiyoti tojik dar nimai duvvūmi asri XVIII va avvali asri XIX. Dushanbe, 1974.

Cultural works produced by the ancient eastern Iranian sedentary population of Middle Asia and by nomadic tribes have been preserved in Tadzhikistan, whose ancient and medieval art was influenced by its location on the trade routes between East and West and by its cultural and economic ties with Iran, India, eastern Turkestan, China, the Mediterranean countries, and the tribes and peoples of the Eurasian steppes. The ancient inhabitants of Tadzhikistan made an important contribution to the art of Bactria, the Kushana Kingdom, Sogdiana, Tokharistan, and Fergana and to the artistic cultures of neighboring peoples (the art of eastern Turkestan, for example, evolved under the strong influence of Sogdian and Tokharian art). The medieval Tadzhiks, in turn, contributed to the art of the states founded by the Samanids and Timurids.

Throughout the course of its development, the artistic culture of the Tadzhik people was closely related to the culture of the other Middle Asian peoples, notably the Uzbeks. In fact, many ancient and medieval masterpieces, including the famous architectural works of Bukhara and Samarkand, miniatures, and works of decorative applied art, may be regarded as the joint legacy of all the Middle Asian peoples. Only works found in the Tadzhik SSR are discussed in this article.

Ancient period. The oldest works of art discovered in Tadzhikistan are the Mesolithic (15,000–10,000 B.C.) ocher rock drawings in the Shakhty grotto, 40 km southwest of Murgab in the eastern Pamirs. Two settlements belonging to the Neolithic Hissar culture have been unearthed in gorodishcha (ancient fortified settlements) near Nurek (Tutkaul and Sai-Saed, both dating from the sixth and fifth millennia B.C.). The late Neolithic settlement of Kui-Bul’en has been excavated near Dangara.

Many settlements dating from the middle and late Bronze Age, which lasted from the mid-second to the early first millennium B.C., have been discovered at Kairakkum. Some of the settlements cover as much as 10 hectares and show traces of buildings up to 20 m long and 12–15 m wide. Among the Bronze Age artifacts found in northern Tadzhikistan is crude hand-modeled pottery decorated with geometric designs and primitive ornaments. In southern Tadzhikistan, in the Vakhsh and Bishkent valleys, the Bronze Age burials of nomadic herdsmen have yielded engobe pottery, some hand-modeled and some wheel-made. Finds include pots, bowls, and cylindrical vessels dating from the middle and latter half of the second millennium B.C. The nomadic tribes also produced bronze knives, daggers, mirrors, and pins. A stylized human clay figurine dating from the second millennium B.C. has been recovered from a Bronze Age grave at Tandyr-El, near Regar. Among Achaemenid structures are the remains of a Bactrian dwelling unearthed in the gorodishche of Kalai-Mir at the Nasir Khisrav settlement. Built between the sixth and fourth centuries B.C., the dwelling is made of mud brick and is divided into rectangular rooms.

The gold and silver jewelry of the Amu Darya treasure gives an idea of the pictorial art of the era. The art of the nomadic Sacae tribes was an integral part of the artistic culture of the Achaemenid period. Cauldrons with sculptural decorations and cast metal plates depicting animals have been found in Sacae burial mounds in the Pamirs, and Sacae petroglyphs have been discovered in northern and central Tadzhikistan and in the western Pamirs.

The descriptions of classical authors attest to the existence of Hellenistic cities in Tadzhikistan in the fourth and third centuries B.C. The cities had a regular layout and were enclosed by walls. There are ruins of Greco-Bactrian cities (third and second centuries B.C.) and Kushana cities (first to fourth centuries A.D.) in southern Tadzhikistan at the gorodishcha of Saksan-Okhur, Sha-khrinau, Munchak-tepe, Iavanskoe, Kei-Kobadshakh, and Kukhnakala. The cities show the influence of Hellenistic building styles and techniques. The Pamir fortresses of Kakhkakha and Iamchun in the Gorno-Badakhshan Autonomous Oblast also date from this period. The tetrahedral stone capitals, adorned with volutes and acanthus, and the bases and shafts found at Saksan-Okhur, Munchak-Tepe, and elsewhere attest to the use of orders that were based on the assimilation of Hellenistic elements into the local building tradition. On the whole, the art of the Greco-Bactrian and Kushana periods was a complex fusion of local artistic traditions and Hellenistic elements. The excavated remains of the palace and temple complex at Saksan-Okhur indicate that it was Middle Asian in its layout—having a courtyard with a four-column iwan surrounded by a passageway—and Hellenistic in its use of details from the classical orders.

A blend of local and Hellenistic traits was also characteristic of decorative sculpture (capitals adorned with high-relief carvings of people and animals from the gorodishche of Shakhrinau), toreutic work (earrings in the shape of a sphinx protoma and a gilded copper medallion with a high-relief bust of Dionysus from the Dushanbe gorodishche), and figurines and pottery (terra-cotta statuettes and engobe vessels from the gorodishcha of Saksan-Okhur, Kei-Kobadshakh, Uzbekon-Tepe, and Iavanskii). The amphora-shaped earrings and bird pendants recovered from the Tulkhar burial ground in the Bishkent Valley (second and first centuries B.C.) give an idea of the art of the nomadic tribes of this period. Embroidery with figural and ornamental motifs has been found in the Ittifok burial ground near Parkhar.

Fifth to the early 20th century. The nucleus of the cities that arose between the fifth and eighth centuries was the shakhristan, which was fortified with turreted walls and divided into large residential blocks of interconnected houses (An example of such a city is Pendzhikent.) The houses of the wealthy were divided into a living area and a four-piered reception hall, which was decorated with wall paintings and wood carving and illuminated through an opening in the hall’s block dome. Palaces had large halls of state with throne iwans that were adorned with painting and carving on the columns, beamed ceilings, and doors. Such halls have been excavated at Pendzhikent and in the gorodishche and castle of Kalai-Kakhkakha in Shakhristan, believed to be the medieval city of Bundzhikat. Citadels were erected either along the city walls or outside the city. Fortified suburban estates, garrison buildings, and keshk castles were built in the countryside. The remains of such structures have been found at Munchak-Tepe, Chil’khudzhra, Tirmizak-Tepe, Urtakurgan, Kalai-Mug, and Gardani-Khisor. The religious architecture of the early Middle Ages is represented by the temples of Pendzhikent, the monastery of Adzhina-Tepe, and the Buddhist temple in the fortress of Kalai-Kafirnigan, near the settlement of Isambai in Lenin Raion.

The early medieval art of Tadzhikistan, which developed within the mainstream of the artistic cultures of Sogdiana, Ustrushana, and Tokharistan, was characterized by indigenous styles based on local variants of early feudal culture, the adaptation of Hellenistic and Kushana traditions, and contacts with the art of northern India and Afghanistan. These features may be seen in various combinations in the sculpture of Adzhina-Tepe and Pendzhikent, where archaeologists have discovered clay statues and high reliefs, frequently painted, set in niches or along walls. The same stylistic blend distinguishes the wood carvings found in the gorodishcha of Shakhristan, at Pendzhikent, and in the fortress of Kalai-Kafirnigan.

Indigenous Middle Asian traditions were stronger in painting than in sculpture. Wall paintings were executed in glue colors applied over a plaster of loess or a ganch base. Multifigure frieze compositions, arranged in tiers, were characteristic of Sogdiana (Pendzhikent). In these compositions, the careful tracing of details complements the narrative quality and flat linearity of the representations, and the paintings are saturated with decorative elements. The Buddhist murals of Tokharistan (Adzhina-Tepe and Kalai-Kafirnigan) are closer to the paintings in the temples of Afghanistan and eastern Turkestan. The paintings of Ustrushana, which to some extent assimilated the traditions of northern Afghanistan and eastern Turkestan, are remarkable for their pale yellow and pale blue coloring, delicate line drawing, and halftone modeling.

After the Arab conquest and the spread of Islam, new types of structures associated with the Muslim religion were built—mosques, minarets, madrasas, mausoleums, and khankas. Small cities grew into large commercial and handicraft centers as suburbs inhabited by merchants and artisans (rabat) enveloped the old shakhristan and citadel. Local early medieval features persisted in the architecture of fortresses (Kalai-Bolo, near Isfara), palaces (Khul’buk, tenth to 12th centuries), and monuments. These traits are strikingly apparent in the Ismail Samani Mausoleum at Bukhara. Mud brick and pakhsa (beaten clay) continued to be the chief building materials; the minarets at Ani, Rarz, and Fatmev along the Upper Zeravshan River are made of mud brick. The use of baked brick in paving floors and facing began in the ninth century.

Patterned brickwork, carved terra-cotta, and painted stucco carvings were used widely in the architectural decoration of vaulted and domed buildings, as exemplified in the Khodzha-Nakhshran Mausoleum near Regar (11th and 12th centuries) and the Khadzha-Mashad Mausoleum in the village of Saiat. The carved clay mihrab (tenth and 11th centuries) of the mosque in the village of Asht is a unique example of architectural decoration. An indigenous order was used in structures with flat ceilings. The columns, made of wood, had either straight shafts decorated with deep slanting carving or figural shafts with fluted carving. Fragments of such carved wooden columns, dating from the ninth to 12th centuries, have been found in the Upper Zeravshan settlements of Obburdon, Rarz, Fatmev, and Urmitan. The carved decoration that solidly covered nearly all the elements of the order included representational motifs reflecting pre-Islamic beliefs, floral patterns, and epigraphic friezes (the portico of the 12th-century Khazrati-bobo Mausoleum in the village of Chorku, near Isfara).

The portal of the Muhammad Bashshar Mausoleum, with its magnificent glazed terra-cotta carvings, attests to the achievements of Tadzhik monumental architecture in the 14th century. In Tadzhikistan, as in other parts of Middle Asia, monumental architecture reached its zenith in the late 14th and 15th centuries, when the world-famous Timurid structures of Samarkand, Sha-khrisabz, and other cities were built. A highly distinctive medieval edifice is the Mir-Seid-Khamadani Mausoleum in Kuliab (14th to 17th centuries), a richly carved three-portal structure consisting of a domed hall and burial vault to which several domed chambers were later added. Religious buildings in the form of one or several domed halls having a square ground plan and sometimes enclosed by an L-shaped domed gallery were built in the 16th and 17th centuries. Examples include the namazga mosque of Abdulla-Khan in the village of Naugilem, 2 km east of Isfara; the mosque-mausoleum of Sheikh Muslekheddin in Leninabad (formerly Khodzhent); the mausoleum of Makhdumi Azam in Gissar; and the Kok-Gumbez Mosque, Baba-Tago Mosque, and Adzhinakhan Mosque and Building in the Sari Mazar ensemble in Ura-Tiube.

In the 18th and early 19th centuries, cities essentially preserved the layout and architectural styles that had evolved in the 12th century. Traditional religious buildings were constructed, but they were modest in scale and decoration, as illustrated by the madrasas in Gissar. National traits developed in the architecture of large public buildings (urban and rural mosques and baths) and the dwellings of the common people. The houses of northern Tadzhikistan consisted of two rooms, an entrance hall, and a columned iwan. The interiors were lavishly decorated with carving and painting on ganch and wood and with niches with scalloped arches. In the south, the houses typically had plastered clay walls, gabled grass roofs, and iwans on plain posts. The houses of mountain dwellers, square in layout, were roofed with log domes resting on posts and having smoke holes.

In Muslim times pictorial art was “ornamentalized” as representations ceased to be independent artistic images and became elements in a decorative composition emphasizing floral, geometric, and epigraphic motifs. That the traditions of early medieval art persisted may be seen from the high-relief stucco figure of a lion found at the gorodishche of Saiat in Kuliab Oblast (ninth and tenth centuries), the carved stucco from Khul’buk depicting imaginary creatures and animals interwoven in an ornamental surface (11th and 12th centuries), the carved wood capital of a column from the village of Obburdon (ninth and tenth centuries), and the carved wood mihrab from the village of Iskodar (tenth and 11th centuries).

The flowering of representational art is associated with the Herat school in the 15th century and with the Middle Asian schools of miniature painting in Bukhara and Samarkand in the 16th and 17th centuries. The greatest of the Middle Asian miniature painters were Makhmud Muzakhkhib, Muhammad (or Khodzha) Mukim, Avaz Muhammad, and Muhammad Murad Samarkandi. Various later works, notably the miniatures of the manuscript Yusuf and Zulaikha (1797–98), found in the Darvaz region and now at the Hermitage in Leningrad, suggest that the art of miniature painting was well developed in the mountainous parts of Tadzhikistan.

In the decorative applied art of medieval Tadzhikistan, indigenous traditions were enriched by contacts with the artistic cultures of the countries of the Muslim East, especially Iran and Afghanistan. Local craftsmen excelled in the production of glazed ceramics (Samanid articles of the ninth and tenth centuries) and ceramics with stamped designs (11th- and 12th-century vessels from Lagman in the Vakhsh Valley and from Khul’buk, Isfara, and Khodzhent), artistic metalwork, chiefly bronze (treasures from Kalai-Baland near Ura-Tiube, from Uzun in the Gissar Valley, and from Lagman and Shakhristan), glasswork, jewelry-making, and weaving. Monumental decorative art included carved and painted stucco, wood carving (columns, supports, and doors), carved unglazed and glazed terra-cotta, decorative painting with egg tempera on wood and ganch, and kundal’ (the application of paints with gilding and silver on a clay relief base), a type of sculptural painting that was extensively used in architecture from the 17th to the early 20th century.

Artistic handicrafts flourished throughout Tadzhikistan from the 18th to the early 20th century. In the north, ceramics were decorated with beautiful underglaze painting, chiefly floral. Dishes depicting a kumgan (narrow-necked water vessel) or dagger were widely made; some of the best examples come from the village of Chorku. The hand-modeled pottery of southern Tadzhikistan (Egid, Kuliab, and Faizabad), either glazed or embellished with red and brown engobe painting, preserved archaic features. Cotton textiles on which contrasting designs were printed with kalyb stamps were made in Khodzhent, Ura-Tiube, Gissar, and other centers. Also produced were striped, plain, and patterned silk and semisilk fabrics; the distinctive abr (cloud) design was achieved by the use of iridescent patches of color. Another highly developed craft was embroidery, used to decorate clothing, skullcaps (tiubeteiki), men’s shawls (rumoly), face veils (rubandy), coverlets, and wall hangings. The embroidery designs were based on a symmetrical arrangement of the decorative elements and the juxtaposition of intense contrasting colors. Stylized images of snakes, animal tracks, goat or ram horns, the moon, the sun, flowers, and fruits were combined with such geometric motifs as rosettes, zigzag stems, triangles, and arches. Symbols such as the pomegranate (fertility) and various emblems (for example, the teapot, signifying hospitality) were often incorporated into the design.

The jewelry makers of Ura-Tiube and Kuliab combined silver and colored stones or glass to form complex designs. Embossed vessels of high quality were also produced at Ura-Tiube. The folk art of the Gorno-Badakhshan Autonomous Oblast is highly distinctive.

Soviet Tadzhikistan. The face of Soviet Tadzhikistan changed rapidly as towns of one-story pisé or mud-brick houses gave way to well-planned cities with comfortable, modern apartment houses and public buildings. Dushanbe and Leninabad were modernized in accordance with general plans, the first of which was adopted in 1939 (principal architect V. G. Veselovskii) and the second in 1968 (architects V. G. Veselovskii and S. N. Samo-nina). General plans were also drawn up in 1939 for Kuliab (architect A. I. Andrzheikovich) and Kurgan-Tiube (architect I. E. Tkachev). In the 1960’s new plans were worked out for both Kuliab (architect V. A. Bugaev) and Kurgan-Tiube (architect Kh. A. Zukhuriddinov).

The principle of perimetric construction was followed in city planning in the 1930’s and early 1940’s. Classical forms, usually combined with Middle Asian elements, predominated in civic architecture. Apartment houses and buildings used for cultural purposes or municipal services were typically relatively narrow one-or two-story buildings. The traditional building materials—mud brick, clay, stone, and wood—were gradually supplanted in the 1930’s by baked brick, concrete, and reinforced concrete.

After a decline during the war years, construction increased considerably between 1945 and 1955. Standard brick apartment houses of two or three stories were built in the cities. With the rapid growth of cities in the second half of the 1950’s, Tadzhik architects were faced with the problem of constructing taller buildings in mountainous, highly seismic areas. The problem was solved through the introduction of industrial construction methods. The general plans for the modernization of Dushanbe, Leninabad, and other cities that were adopted after 1960 provided for the creation of mikroraiony (neighborhood units) supplied with all modern conveniences and for the building of four- to nine-story large-panel and brick apartment houses with awnings.

Extensive industrial development led to the building of new cities, among them Nurek, Regar, and lavan. The first frame-panel buildings were erected, and efforts were made to improve earthquake-resistant construction. In the 1960’s and early 1970’s, contemporary designs were increasingly combined with traditional decoration, ornamental paintings, and carving on ganch and wood, all executed by folk craftsmen.

The earliest phase in the development of Soviet Tadzhik art is associated with Samarkand, where during the 1920’s the artists L. L. Bure, V. N. Eremian, G. N. Nikitin, and Azamkhon Siddiki produced political and agitational posters, illustrations for satirical magazines (Mashrab, Mushfiki, Bigiz), and book designs (school textbooks and Soviet Tadzhik literary works). With the formation of the Tadzhik SSR in 1929, Dushanbe became the center of Tadzhikistan’s artistic life. Through the efforts of the artists E. G. Burtsev, M. G. Novik, and P. I. Fal’bov, who came to Tadzhikistan in the late 1920’s and early 1930’s, the organizational bureau of the Artists’ Union of Tadzhikistan was created.

The republic’s first exhibits displayed works by the painters E. G. Burtsev, A. Ashurov, A. N. Kamelin, P. I. Fal’bov, and M. Khoshmukhamedov. Tadzhikistan’s artists strove for verisimilitude and social commentary in their depiction of phenomena. They sought ways of realistically generalizing from life, portraying types, and depicting local characteristics. Socialist realism became the dominant method. During the late 1930’s the painters G. N. Timkov and B. G. Shakhnazarov and the stage designers E. G. Chemodurov and V. I. Fufygin came to Tadzhikistan, and the Moscow artists V. L. Sidorenko and I. A. Ershov participated in the republic’s artistic life. The preparations for the first ten-day festival and exhibit of Tadzhik art in Moscow gave fresh impetus to artistic creativity. Among those who helped organize the festival were the Moscow stage designers V. F. Ryndin and K. F. Kuleshov, the graphic artist P. N. Staronosov, and the painter N. G. Kotov. Both Staronosov and Kotov had made frequent visits to Tadzhikistan. The republic’s artists turned their attention to large thematic pictures and monumental multifigure compositions.

The graphic arts flourished during the Great Patriotic War. Agitational and political posters were produced by the Okna TadzhikTA group and cartoons by A. M. Orlov, M. Khoshmukhamedov, and S. A. Krasnopol’skii. The number of artists with professional training increased substantially in the late 1940’s and the 1950’s. A. Ashurov, A. N. Kamelin, N. G. Kuz’-min, and N. A. Matasov became known for their easel paintings, and S. E. Zakharov and I. A. Abdurakhmanov for their monumental decorative art. The leading stage designers were M. M. Mukhin and M. N. Shipulin, and fine book illustrations were produced by V. I. Serebrianskii, P. V. Zobnin, and S. A. Krasnopol’skii. E. A. Tatarinova emerged as an important sculptor. The best works of these years attest to a conceptual unity in Tadzhik art based on an interest in the natural environment and a tendency to view reality in terms of poetic images.

Representational art reached a high level in the 1960’s. Creative individuality marked the works of A. T. Amindzhanov, A. O. Akhunov, V. M. Boborykin, K. Zhumagazin, A. N. Kamelin, A. Rakhimov, P. I. Fal’bov, Z. Khabibulaev, and Kh. Khushvakhtov. New tendencies appeared: A heightened interest in the surrounding reality was reflected in the treatment of contemporary themes, artistic means were enriched through experimentation with color, composition, and drawing, the diversity of genres increased, and portraiture was developed (I. L. Lisikov). There were notable achievements in book illustration (S. I. Vishnepol’skii, K. V. Turenko, and V. P. Fomin) and poster art (S. A. Krasnopol’skii).

Decorative applied art, notably artistic weaving, carpet-making, hand and machine embroidery, ceramics, and jewelry-making, has developed successfully in Soviet times. Local traits in monumental carving and painting on wood and ganch are reflected in the decorative work of the folk artists Iu. Baratbekov, M. Alimov, and S. Nuritdinov. The best traditions of folk art have been creatively developed in the printed textiles of Rakhim Iuldashev, the ornamental work of Iusufdzhan Raufov, the ceramics of Ashurbai Mavlianov and Saifi Sakhibov, and the embroidery of Zul’fiia Bakhriddinova.


Voronina, V. L. Narodnaia arkhitektura Severnogo Tadzhikistana. Moscow, 1959.
Iskusstvo Tadzhikskogo naroda, fases. 1–3. Dushanbe, 1956–65.
Istoriia iskusstva narodov SSSR, vols. 1–3,7. Moscow, 1971–74.
Litvinskii, B. A., and T. 1. Zeimal’. Adzhina-Tepa. Moscow, 1971. Veselovskii, V. G., and D. D. Gendlin. Arkhitektura Sovetskogo Tadzhikistana. Moscow, 1972.
Iskusstvo Tadzhikskoi SSR. [Album, with an introduction by L. Aini. Leningrad, 1972.]
Staviskii, B. Ia. Iskusstvo Srednei Azii: Drevnii period, VI v. do n.e.-VIII v. n.e. Moscow, 1974.
Ashrafi, M. M. persidsko-tadzhikskaia poeziia v miniatiure XIV-XVII vv. Dushanbe, 1974.
Ocherki o khudozhnikakh Tadzhikistana. Dushanbe, 1975.

The musical culture of the Tadzhiks is rooted in the ancient states of Bactria, Sogdiana, and Ustrushana. A monophonic music, Tadzhik music developed orally as part of the folk and folk-professional tradition. Tadzhik folk music is conventionally divided into a northern style (Leninabad Oblast), a central style (Kuliab Oblast), and a Pamirs style (Gorno-Badakhshan Autonomous Oblast). The northern style has an affinity with the music of Bukhara and Samarkand (Uzbek SSR).

Among the many genres of folk music are heroic epics (one of the oldest examples of which is the popular Gurugli of Kuliab Oblast), work songs (the maida and the khup-khup of northern Tadzhikistan), family and everyday songs (such as lullabies, called lalayik in the Pamirs and alia elsewhere), ritual songs (calendar songs known as boichechak in northern Tadzhikistan and gulgardzhi in Karategin and Darvaz), harvest songs (the mandog of Karategin and Darvaz), wedding songs (the naksh men’s songs, the yor-yor women’s songs of northern Tadzhikistan, and the sha ornad of the Pamirs), and funeral songs (the sadr of northern Tadzhikistan and the falak and maddokh of the Pamirs). Lyric songs include the garibi, or songs of foreign lands, sung in northern Tadzhikistan and Kuliab Oblast, the ruboiyot of Kuliab and the Pamirs, the ashula, bait, and moshoba of northern Tadzhikistan, the falak of Kuliab, the dargilik of Shugnan, and the bulbulik of Vakhan. Instrumental music is performed everywhere.

Tadzhik folk music is a diatonic music based on natural modes. Also encountered is a mode with an augmented second between the second and third steps. Melismas, both grace notes and glissandi, are widely used in vocal music, as is the nola, the device of singing sounds of no precise pitch over a given sound. The folk songs have a distinctive structure. Although the typical pattern is a-b-c-b, songs with well-developed melodies have a structure of a-b-c-b-d-b, with b, c, and d constituting variants of the melody. Some types of vocal-instrumental and instrumental music consist of two or three contrasting sections: a slow improvised prelude, the basic melody, and the ufar, a dance section similar to the preceding one in intonation. The melody includes intervals extending from thirds to octaves, and its range is frequently increased by singing over the end tones. The folk songs of northern Tadzhikistan, close in character and modal-intonational structure to classical Tadzhik songs, have the widest range and most well-developed melody. The rhythmic patterns of folk music vary: the six-beat measure is common, as are meters of 5/8, 7/8, 8/8, and 3/4 + 3/8.

Melodies with march rhythms, vigorous quarter intonations, and a clear harmonic base appeared in folk music after the October Revolution. Examples of the new type of song include “Proletarian of Bukhara,” “Song of Lenin,” and “Red Army Soldiers.” Iranian, Azerbaijani, and Russian popular tunes were adapted to new texts.

Traditional folk instruments include the dutar and dumbrak (plucked string instruments), the Kashgarian rubab and tanbur (plectral), the gidzhak (bowed), the nai, karnai, and surnai (wind), the chang (a cymbal-like instrument and also a reed-plucked instrument for women), and the tablak, nagora, doira, zang, and kairok (percussion). Indigenous to the Pamirs are the setor (plucked string), blandzikom (string-plectral), and daf (percussion). The accordion, mandolin, and tar are commonly used in contemporary music-making. The Tadzhiks have a predilection for solo vocal performances accompanied by a single instrument or an instrumental ensemble. Also popular is the lapara, a duet sung as a dialogue between a young man and woman. Ritual songs are performed either antiphonally or by a chorus singing in unison.

Classical folk-professional music, transmitted orally, evolved as part of the urban culture and was traditionally performed by sozandas (female singers and dancers), mavrigikhons (male singers), and makomists (singers and instrumentalists). Classical music reached its peak in the Shash-maqam, which developed in Bukhara, Samarkand, and Khodzhent between the ninth and 18th centuries. The Shash-maqam comprises six maqams (buzruk, rast, nawa, duga, siga, and iraq) incorporating ghazals by the classical poets Rudaki, Hafiz, Jami, Kamol, Saadi, Hilali, Zebunnisa, Bedil, Navoi, and Fuzuli. The main musical instruments used in the performance of the Shash-maqam are the tanbur and the doira, although various ensembles of folk instruments are also employed.

In the late 19th and early 20th centuries Tadzhik classical music was further developed by the singers and musicians Ota Dzhalol, Ota Gies, Khodzha Abdulaziz, Domullo Khalim Ibadov, Levi Babakhanov, and Sodirkhon. Among outstanding 20th-century exponents of classical music are T. Davliatov, K. Isrofilov, B. Nadzhmiddinov, Usto Pulot, and Khakimov. The Shash-maqam was written down in modern notation by the performers B. Faizullaev, Sh. Sakhibov, and F. Shakobov, and the score was published between 1950 and 1967.

The wealth of musical traditions stimulated the development of music theory. Some of the earliest treatises on music were written by Near Eastern, Middle Asian, and Iranian men of learning: al-Farabi (ninth and tenth centuries), Avicenna (tenth and 11th centuries), Safi al-Din al-Urmawi (13th century), al-Amuli (14th century), Abd al-Rahman Jami, Zaynulabiddin Husein, and Abd al-Qadir (all of whom lived in the 15th century), Najimiddin Kavkabi Bukhoroi (16th century), and Darvesh Ali Changi (17th century).

With the establishment of Soviet power in Tadzhikistan came a new phase in the development of musical culture. Such songs as the “March of Freedom” (words by S. Aini, sung to the melody of the “Marseillaise”), the “Internationale” (translated into Tadzhik by M. Rakhimi and A. Lakhuti), and Lakhuti’s “We Are the Children of Workers” (to the melody of “Boldly, Comrades, Keep Peace One and All!”) reflected the social transformations in the republic and enriched Tadzhik music with new intonations and rhythms. Polyphonic music emerged alongside the traditional national monodic art. Musical plays, operas, ballets, and symphonies were composed.

A music technicum was founded in Leninabad in 1929 and the Arts Combine was established in Dushanbe in 1934 to train artists, musicians, and dancers (in 1937 it was reorganized as a music and ballet school). The schools offered instruction in Tadzhik folk and classical music and European music, taught by musicians and teachers of various nationalities, among them N. N. Mironov, A. M. Listopadov, N. Rudnev, S. A. Balasanian, A. S. Len-skii, S. Iu. Urbakh, V. Sharf, D. S. Airapetiants, M. Kalantarov, L. G. Kaufman, P. S. Miroshnichenko, and E. Prokofev. In 1934 the singers and musicians of the Dunshanbe Drama Theater (founded 1929) formed a separate company for the staging of musical plays. The company became the nucleus of the Tadzhik Musical Theater, founded in 1936 and reorganized as the Tadzhik Theater of Opera and Ballet in 1940. An important event was the staging in 1938 of Balasanian and Urbakh’s musical play Lola, for which Lakhuti wrote the text. The next year saw the staging of the first Tadzhik opera, Balasanian’s The Vose Uprising. The Tadzhik Philharmonic Society and a folk music research center were organized in 1938.

During the Great Patriotic War composers wrote highly topical works about the struggle against fascism. Balasanian’s musical drama Song of Rage and Balasanian and Z. Shakhidi’s musical comedy Rozia were staged in 1942. I. O. Rogal’skii’s musical drama The Golden Kishlak, based on a play by M. Mirshakar, was presented in Khorog in 1944. Patriotic songs were composed by Z. Shakhidi, F. Saliev, Sh. Bobokalonov, and N. Pulatov. The national anthem of the Tadzhik SSR was written in 1946, with words by Lakhuti and music by S. Iudakov.

Several noteworthy operas were composed in the latter half of the 1940’s and the 1950’s: Lenskii’s Takhirand Zukhra (staged in 1944) and The Bride (1946), Balasanian’s Bakhtior and Nisso (1954), and Sh. Saifiddinov’s Pulatand Gul’ru (1957). Orchestral works of this period included Saliev’s Tadzhik Rhapsody (1947), A. Khamdamov’s Holiday Overture (1958), and Ia. Sabzanov’s concerto for piano and orchestra (1955) and his symphonic poem In Memory of Rudaki (1958). A number of fine cantatas were written, among them Flourish, Tadzhikistan! by Saifiddinov (1954), To the Party by D. Akhunov (1960), and the song-cantata Glory to the Party by Sabzanov (1956).

During the 1960’s and 1970’s, composers sought to enrich the musical language with contemporary means of expression and to incorporate the folkloric heritage. Several new operas dealt with themes of social importance: Sabzanov’s The Return (staged 1967), D. Dustmukhammedov’s Cursed by the People (1973), and Lenskii’s Khosiiat (1964). Among other notable operas were Z. Shakhidi’s Komde and Madan (staged in 1960), Urbakh’s The Celebrated Bridegroom (in Russian, 1964), S. Khamraev’s Sherak (1970), and A. Odinaev’s Parastu (1970). Operattas were composed by Shakhidi (The Girl From Dushanbe, 1967) and G. S. Aleksandrov (Water of Life, 1975). Dustmukhammedov’s cantata Eternally Living (1970, about V. I. Lenin) and Sabzanov’s oratorio The Fires of Nurek (1970) received high praise. Saifiddinov produced two fine tone poems for voice and symphony orchestra: Caution: Stalingrad (words by V. A. Urin, 1967) and The Road to the Mausoleum (words by M. Tursun-zade, 1969). Another important work was Dustmukhammedov’s Dedication to Mother (1973), a tone poem for voice, reader, and orchestra set to a text by G. Mirzo, M. Farkhat, A. Shukukha, and G. Suleimanova.

Symphonies have been written by Lenskii, Odinaev, Aleksandrov, Iu. G. Ter-Osipov, A. Iadgarov, M. Atoev, A. Saliev, Iu. Mamedov, Dustmukhammedov, and F. Bakhor. The symphonic poem and symphonic miniature are becoming popular genres. Outstanding among the former are Saiffidinov’s The Golden Kishlak (1963), Odinaev’s Lenin in the Pamirs (1967), and Z. Shakhidi’s 1917. The latter is best represented by Khamraev’s A Choreographic Picture (1970), T. Shakhidi’s Makom-capriccio (1972), and F. Bakhor’s Marakanda.

Concerti for various solo instruments and orchestra have been written by Kh. Abdullaev, T. Iakh”iaev, Dustmukhammedov, Iadgarov, E. D. Lobenko, and Atoev, and instrumental chamber works have been produced by Saifiddinov, Sabzanov, Akhunov, M. A. Tsvetaev, N. Sh. Muravin, L. M. Birnov, Abdullaev, Bakhor, A. Saliev, Sh. Pulodi, Z. Zul’fikarov, Iu. Mamedov, and Z. Mirshakar. Concerti have also been written for national instruments; a notable example is Odinaev’s Falak (1974) for dumbrak and orchestra. Beautiful art songs, their texts taken from Tadzhik poetry, have been composed by Z. Shakhidi (“A Soul’s Grief,” based on Hilali’s poem), Khamdamov (“My Heart,” words by Kh. Iusufi), Saifiddinov, Sakhibov, Shakhobov, and Dustmukhammedov.

The Tadzhik SSR has produced many outstanding musicians. Its conductors include People’s Artists of the Tadzhik SSR A. Kamalov, I. Abdullaev, and F. Saliev and Honored Art Workers of the Tadzhik SSR E. D. Airapetiants, A. S. Khamdamov, L. G. Kaufman, and L. Ia. Levin. The leading choral conductor is Honored Artist of the Tadzhik SSR Kh. Mullokandov, and the foremost directors are People’s Artists of the Tadzhik SSR G. Valamat-zade and R. A. Korokh. Famous singers include People’s Artists of the USSR T. Fazylova, A. Babakulov, and Kh. Mavlianova and People’s Artists of the Tadzhik SSR L. Kabirova, Kh. Tairov, R. Galibova, R. Tolmasov, A. Mullokandov, Z. Nazimov, Dzh. Murodov, Sh. Mulladzhanova, M. Ibragimova, M. Bokieva, B. Niezov, S. Bandishoeva, and B. Iskhakova. Among popular folk singers (khafizes) are Kh. Rizo, M. Bakhodurov, O. Khashimov, N. Kurbanaseynov, F. Dzhorubov, N. Odinaev, Sh. Dzhuraev, B. Faizullaev, F. Shakhobov, and Sh. Sakhibov. Also well known are the folk instrumentalists G. Gulomaliev (People’s Artist of the USSR), A. Alaev (People’s Artist of the Tadzhik SSR), and M. Muminov (Honored Art Worker of the Tadzhik SSR).

In 1975 the republic had six musical theaters: the Tadzhik Theater of Opera and Ballet in Dushanbe, the Pushkin Republic Theater of Musical Comedy in Leninabad, the A. Rudaki Oblast Theater of Musical Comedy in Khorog (Gorno-Badakhshan Autonomous Oblast), the musical drama theaters in Kuliab and Kanibadam, and the Uzbek Musical Drama Theater in Nau. A symphony orchestra (established 1965), a rubab ensemble (1940), and a song and dance ensemble (1940) perform under the auspices of the republic’s Philharmonic Society. The Committee for Television and Radio Broadcasting sponsors a folk orchestra, an ensemble of Shash-maqam performers (1964), and a variety stage ensemble called Gul’shan (1966). The history of the arts section of the Akhmad Donish Institute of History of the Academy of Sciences of the Tadzhik SSR (1958) offers courses in music history. Training in music is given at the Institute of the Arts (1973; from 1967 to 1973, the arts department of the Pedagogical Institute) in Dushanbe, the music schools in Leninabad and Dushanbe, the Republic Special Secondary School of Music in Dushanbe, the Republic Secondary Boarding School of Music in Dushanbe, and the republic’s 52 children’s music schools. The Composers’ Union of the Tadzhik SSR was established in 1940. Ten-day festivals of Tadzhik art and music have been held in Moscow (1941 and 1957) and other cities in the Soviet Union. The Tadzhik SSR, in turn, has hosted ten-day festivals devoted to the art and music of other republics, as well as numerous competitions and festivals of folk and professional music.


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Lenskii, A. Tadzhikskaia SSR, 2nded. Moscow, 1957.
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Muzykal’naia zhizn’ Sovetskogo Tadzhikistana, fases. 1–2. Dushanbe, 1974–75.

Tadzhik choreography originated in ancient rituals, games, and pre-Islamic religious ceremonies linked to spring festivals (derived from mystery cults) and to the worship of a god who dies and is resurrected. Dancing figures are depicted in medieval miniatures and other old works of art.

One of the most ancient dances was the pantomime, in which the dancer imitated the behavior of animals and birds. Among the most popular pantomimes were the Lion, the Eagle, the Fox, and the Stork. Of ritual dances, the dance for the dead survives to this day in remote villages in the Pamirs. There were also dances representing labor, such as the weaving of cloth; war and bravery dances, performed with sabers, knives, and fire; dances in which the dancer accompanied himself on a musical instrument, usually a tambourine or homemade fiddle; and dances performed with various objects, such as spoons, jugs, teapots, or sticks. Comic dances were also known. An interesting development was the theatrical choreographic miniature, exemplified in the dance on a wooden horse. Some lyrical and everyday dances were named after the song or melody to which they were performed. Tadzhik folk choreography reached its zenith in the Bell Dance (Zang), a dance suite in many parts.

Dance was an integral part of the performances of the maskharabozy, folk puppet theaters, and folk circus artists. The diversity of dances engendered original rhythms, movements, figures, and poses. Dances were performed by both amateurs and professionals. A Tadzhik professional dance theater, called Sozanda, gave performances in Bukhara in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

The art of Tadzhik folk dance blossomed after the October Revolution. Women’s dances, previously performed secretly, away from men, became firmly established when women were emanicipated. The Tadzhik Philharmonic Society, founded in 1938, encouraged the creation of folk-based dances and did much to popularize the best of folk choreographic art. Organized in 1965, the Lola State Ensemble of Tadzhik Dance (artistic director, G. Valamat-zade) performs dances of the Tadzhik SSR and other Middle Asian republics, as well as dances indigenous to the non-Soviet East. The leading masters of folk dance are B. Khamidov, S. Khodzhaev, Kh. Pasarov, Valamat-zade, O. Isamova, A. Iskhakova, A. Azimova, A. Nasirova, L. Zo-khidova, Z. Aminzoda, G. Mirdzhumaeva, M. Kalantarova, Sh. Rashidova, Kh. Erkaeva, and E. Asanova.

The diversity and originality of the folk dances of the Tadzhiks served as the foundation for the development of the Soviet Tadzhik ballet theater. A ballet group was formed in 1936 in Dushanbe under the auspices of the Tadzhik Musical Theater. It included professional dancers from other Middle Asian republics and the theaters of Samarkand and Bukhara, as well as talented amateurs. The first Tadzhik ballet dancers were Valamat-zade, M. Faiziboeva, Azimova, Iskhakova, Isamova, S. Bakhor, and U. Rabimov. The folk dancers Pasarov, Khodzhaev, and Khamidov also worked with the ballet artists. In addition to training in Tadzhik dance, lessons in classical ballet and character dance were given at the Tadzhik Musical Theater by the choreographers A. N. Islamova and A. I. Protsenko, who came from Moscow in 1936 and 1939, respectively. The interest in Russian choreographic culture facilitated the development of Tadzhik ballet. The dance scenes in the play Lola by S. A. Balasanian and S. Iu. Urbakh (1938) and those in the first Tadzhik operas (The Vose Uprising by Balasanian [1939] and The Blacksmith Kova by Balasanian and Sh. N. Bobokalonov [1941]) introduced ballet on the Tadzhik stage. An important event was the staging of A. S. Len-skii’s ballet Two Roses (choreographer, K. Ia. Goleizovskii), first performed in 1941 during the ten-day festival of Tadzhik art and music in Moscow.

During the 1940’s a number of dancers, among them Azimova, Zokhidova, Valamat-zade, and M. Kabilov, mastered the technique of classical dance, enabling the Tadzhik Theater of Opera and Ballet to include in its repertoire the ballets La Filie Mal Gardée by P. Hertel (1943) and The Fountain of Bakhchisarai by B. V. Asaf’ev (1945, choreographer Protsenko). These early productions paved the way for the staging of such complex ballets as P. I. Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake (1947) and S. S. Prokofiev’s Cinderella (1949).

The subsequent development of the art of ballet was associated with the careers of the first Tadzhik choreographers, Valamat-zade and Azimova, who graduated in 1951 from the choreographic department of the A. V. Lunacharskii State Institute of Theatrical Art in Moscow. Both choreographers sought to improve the dancers’ technique and to expand the repertoire. Azimova won recognition for her productions of R. M. Gliére’s The Red Poppy (1950) and I. V. Morozov’s Doctor Aibolit (1952), and Valamat-zade’s staging of A. A. Krein’s Laurenciia (1952) and C. Pugni’s La Esmeralda (1953) was highly praised. Vala-malzade also staged two new national ballets combining classical and folk dance, Source of Happiness by L. K. Knipper (1950) and The Pale Blue Carpet (The Magic Carpet) by M. S. Vol’berg (1958). The highest achievements of this period were Balasanian’s ballet Leili and Medzhnun (1947, second version 1957) and Lenskii’s Dil’bar (1954, second version 1957). In both ballets classical choreography was harmoniously combined with Tadzhik dance through the incorporation of highly effective dances and colorful mass folk scenes. The ballet company’s technique continued to improve, and Zokhidova emerged as the first major Tadzhik classical dancer.

A new stage in the life of the republic’s ballet theater began in 1958–61, when the S. Aini Theater of Opera and Ballet was joined by graduates of the Tadzhik studio of the Leningrad Choreographic School. The theater’s repertoire was expanded to include such Russian and Western European classics as A. Adam’s Giselle (1958), Pugni’s Le Corsaire (1960), Prokofiev’s Romeo and Juliet (1961), L. Minkus’ Don Quixote (1969), Tchaikovsky’s The Nutcracker (1971), and Minkus’ La Bayadère (1974). Works of composers from the fraternal republics included Shurale by F. Z. Iarullin (1962), Path of Thunder by K. A. Karaev (1963), Timur Malik (Love and the Sword) by M. A. Ashrafi (1972), The Masquerade by L. A. Laputin (1973), and Cinderella by Prokofiev (1973). Among successful performances of the 1960s and 1970’s were the one-act ballets Bolero, to the music of M. Ravel (1962), Egyptian Nights by A. S. Arenskii (1968), Daphnis and Chloé by Ravel (1969), El amor brujo by M. de Falla (1969), and The Lady and the Hooligan by Shostakovich (1970). Another popular genre was the choreographic miniature. The Tadzhik ballet company became known for its fine children’s productions.

The leading dancers of the younger generation are People’s Artist of the USSR M. Sabirova (principal soloist), People’s Artists of the Tadzhik SSR B. Isaeva and M. Burkhanov, and Honored Artists of the Tadzhik SSR V. Kormilin, K. Kholov, S. Uzakova, Sh. Turdieva, T. Kholova, T. Dzhavadzade, S. Azamatova, N. Mad’iarova, and G. Goloviants. Among the most promising of the young choreographers are M. Burkhanov and M. Umarov. A choreographic studio was opened in Dushanbe in 1945, and a choreographic school was founded in the city in 1958.


Azimova, A. Tantseval’noe iskusstvo Tadzhikistana. Stalinabad, 1957.

The germs of dramatic action were present in songs and dances associated with labor processes, in pre-Islamic religious ceremonies and rites, and in festivals, such as the Lola festival celebrating the blossoming of tulips. A comic mask dating from the first centuries B.C. has been found at Toprak-Kale (Khorezm), and an ossuary discovered at Afrasiab, also from this period, depicts four persons holding tragic masks. Various forms of traditional oral folk theater originated in remote antiquity. A favorite entertainment at weddings and other festive family occasions was the performance of the folk plays The Mongolian Woman, The Old Man, and The Dervishes. The folk puppet theater (zochabozi) and the traditional oral theater of the maskharabozy evolved out of folk art. Nevertheless, the development of the folk theater was hindered by feudal customs and the hostility of the priests to the people’s spiritual needs. After Turkestan’s unification with Russia, the Russian, Azerbaijani, and Tatar theatrical cultures spread rapidly into the region.

A European-type Tadzhik theater was created after the October Revolution. Amateur agitational theaters, their performances imbued with revolutionary enthusiasm and faith in the victory of the new system, were organized in Khodzhent in 1919 and later in Kanibadam, Ura-Tiube, and Isfara. The first professional theater was organized in 1929 in Dushanbe as the Tadzhik State Drama Theater, later renamed the A. Lakhuti Tadzhik Drama Theater. Three years later a musical drama theater was established in Leninabad. During the 1930’s, professional theaters sprang up in the republic’s major cities and raion centers. Their companies included Tadzhik actors who had worked in Uzbek theaters and amateur performers. A Russian drama theater that grew out of the Moscow Theater Studio headed by A. D. Dikii opened in Dushanbe in 1937.

Having begun with performances of one-act propaganda plays, the Tadzhik theater shifted to multiact plays in the first half of the 1930’s, many of them topical plays, revolutionary in spirit, treating pressing questions of Soviet life. The first multiact play, A. Usmanov’s Struggle, about the crushing of the Basmachi movement, was staged in 1933.

The latter half of the 1930’s and the early 1940’s were marked by the assimilation of the Russian realistic theater, intensive ideological and artistic growth, and the firm establishment of socialist realism. Several important plays reflecting socialist construction appeared, notably S. Saidmuradov and I. Ismailov’s Slander (1938) and S. Ulug-zoda’s Shodmon (1939) and Redsticks (staged in 1941). The Tadzhik theater’s predilection for a romantic repertoire and a poetically fervent art was manifested as early as the 1930’s in the productions of A. Pirmukhamed-zade and V. M. Vol’kenshtein’s Rustam and Sukhrab (1941), Schiller’s Intrigue and Love (1937), and Shakespeare’s Othello (1939).

Protagonists whose personalities had been shaped under Soviet power appeared on the stage during the Great Patriotic War in the plays A Mother’s Heart by Dzh. Ikrami (1942) and Nadir’s House by Ikrami and Faiko (1943). Postwar plays have depicted life in socialist Tadzhikistan—the cultural development and growing prosperity of the people, people at work, the new relationships between people, personality traits of the contemporary individual, and the struggle against feudal-bai vestiges in people’s consciousness. These themes are treated in Saodat by Saidmuradov and M. Rabiev (1948), Sitora by Ikrami (1954), A Woman’s Will by A. Sidki (1961), Life and Love (1958) and A Mother’s Verdict (1962) by F. Ansori, The Radiant Pearl by Ulug-zoda (1963), and I Want to Live by M. Khakimova (1973). Ikrami’s Dokhunda (1954, 1957) and Singed Hearts (1967) and Saidmura-dov’s Epic of Bibi Zainab (1965) dealt with the establishment of Soviet power in Tadzhikistan and the people’s struggle for happiness and independence. Lenin was portrayed on the Tadzhik stage for the first time in G. Abdullo and Sh. Kiiamov’s play Hurricane (1957) and Abdullo’s plays The Flame of Freedom (1964) and Soldiers of the Revolution (1970). The repertoire was enriched by works of Soviet and world dramaturgy. Among the best productions were Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet (1947) and King Lear (1957), Gogol’s The Inspector-General (1946, 1952), Ostrovskii’s Innocent Victims (1962), and Kakhkhar’s Love and the Sword (1974). The achievements of the Tadzhik theater were demonstrated during the ten-day festivals of Tadzhik art, music, and literature that were held in Moscow in 1941 and 1957.

Although they subscribe to the same acting style, Tadzhikistan’s actors are highly individualistic and differ in their artistic manner. The various companies draw upon the graduates of the Tadzhik Institute of the Arts. People’s Artist of the USSR M. Kasymov and People’s Artist of the Tadzhik SSR G. Bakaeva have made an invaluable contribution to the development of the dramatic theater. The leading theatrical figures in 1975 were People’s Artists of the USSR A. Burkhanov, N. N. Volchkov, and T. Fazylova; People’s Artists of the Tadzhik SSR B. Alifbekova, M. Vakhidov, T. Gafarova, M. Ibragimova, G. Zavkibekov, B. Karamkhudoev, V. Ia. Lange, Kh. Nazarova, Kh. Ra-khmatullaev, G. D. Savel’eva, O. M. Smirnova, S. Tuibaeva, O. Usmanova, E. D. Chistova, and S. Shoismailova; and Honored Artists of the Tadzhik SSR Kh. Gadoev, M. Isaeva, and A. Mukhammedzhanov. In 1976 the republic’s theatrical life centered on the Lakhuti Academic Tadzhik Drama Theater in Dushanbe, the Tadzhik Youth Theater in Dushanbe, the Pushkin Republic Theater of Musical Comedy in Leninabad, the A. Rudaki Oblast Theater of Musical Comedy in Khorog, the musical drama theaters in Kuliab and Kanibadam, the Uzbek Musical Drama Theater in Nau, the Russian theaters in Dushanbe and Chkalovsk, and the puppet theater in Chkalovsk.


Nurdzhanov, N. Tadzhikskii narodnyi teatr. Moscow, 1956.
Nurdzhanov, N. Istoriia tadzhikskogo sovetskogo teatra (1917–1941 gg.). Dushanbe, 1967.
Nurdzhanov, N. Tadzhikskii teatr. Moscow, 1968.
Istoriia sovetskogo dramaticheskogo teatra, vols. 2–6. Moscow, 1966–71.
Circus. In the distant past the most popular spectacles among the Tadzhiks were horsemanship, competitions in dexterity and in clearing obstacles, the performances of trained animals and birds, wrestling (gushtingiri), juggling (chashmbandi and nairangbozi), tightrope walking (dorbozy), and the shows of comic actors (maskharabozy). The Tadzhiks’ first acquaintance with the European circus dates from the 1880’s, after Tadzhikistan had become part of Russia. The Russian troupes headed by Pankratov, Zhigalov, and Kozyr’kov toured Tadzhikistan, and F. A. Iupatov’s popular troupes performed in Khodzhent and other cities.
The circus art of the fraternal republics facilitated the birth of the Soviet Tadzhik circus. A Tadzhik circus studio was opened in Dushanbe in 1968, and the first program of national circus art was presented on Apr. 22,1970. Among the best circus acts are those of the bareback riders S. Begbudi, D. Baronov, and N. Tagaeva, the equestrian acrobatics of D. Baikadamova, R. Urunova, and Iu. Bal’mont, the tightrope dances of R. Riskulov and T. Iakubov, and the feats of N. Akhmedova, the tightrope walker who performs on a free-standing ladder. Also famous are P. Iusupov’s trained camels and the Tadzhik National Games, a sideshow directed by V. Valiev. A new circus building was opened in 1976.

The first Tadzhik films—short documentaries and news-reels—were made in 1929, the year that the film series Soviet Tadzhikistan was inaugurated. The next year saw the founding of the Tadzhikkino Company, which produced a number of noteworthy propaganda films in the early 1930’s, among them The Golden Worm, From Cotton to Cloth, From Omach to Plow, and Honorary Right.

The first Tadzhik feature film, When Emirs Die (1932), explored the theme of the acute class struggle in the countryside. The Emigrant (1934), directed by K. Ia. Iarmatov, showed the psychological evolution of the Tadzhik middle peasant. The first sound feature films The Garden (directed by N. V. Dostal’) and Friends Meet Again (directed by Iarmatov), both made in 1939, depict the building of socialist life in the republic. After the Moscow studio Soiuzdetfil’m was evacuated to Dushanbe during the Great Patriotic War, the unified Dushanbe Film Studio released feature films, documentaries, and war film collections. Son of Tadzhikistan (1942), directed by V. M. Pronin, portrayed the friendship of the Russian and Tadzhik peoples at the battlefront. Notable postwar documentaries include Tadzhikistan (1946), The Valley of the Vakhsh River (1947), On Ancestral Ground (1949), and Soviet Tadzhikistan (1951).

In the late 1950’s and early 1960’s new themes and genres were developed in feature films, national screenwriters and directors appeared, and literary works served as the basis for several fine films. B. A. Kimiagarov produced the film Dokhunda (1956, based on S. Aini’s novel), which showed for the first time the Tadzhiks’ path to the revolution. Contemporary themes were treated in My Friend Navruzov (1957), Lofty Duty (1958), the comedy I Met a Girl (1957), and the comedy Time for a Son to Wed (1960). Among other noteworthy films of this period were A Poet’s Fate (1959, directed by Kimiagarov), the tragic story of Rudaki, the great poet of the Middle Ages, Man Changes His Skin (1960, directed by R. Ia. Perel’shtein) about the building of the Vakhsh Canal in the 1930’s, and Zumrad (1962, directed by A. R. Rakhimov and A. G. Davidson), portraying the moral emancipation of Tadzhik women. A number of films of the 1960’s dealt with the history of the revolution: Children of the Pamirs (1963), directed by V. Ia. Motyl’; Peacetime (1965), and Khasanarbakesh (1966), both directed by Kimiagarov, and Death of a Usurer (1966, after S. Aini), Betrayal (1967), and The Unmasking (1969), all directed by T. M. Sabirov.

The 1960’s and 1970’s saw the emergence of a group of talented young Tadzhik directors that included M. S. Aripov (Nisso, 1966; Forefathers’ Secret, 1972), M. K. Kasymova (The Summer of 1943, 1968; Dzhura Sarkor, 1970; Four From Chorsang, 1972), S. M. Khamidov (Meeting at the Old Mosque, 1969; Legend of the Paviak Prison, 1971; Secret of the Forgotten Passage, 1973), and A. B. Turaev (The Third Daughter, 1971). Three films directed by masters of the older generation explored ethical and moral problems of contemporary life: Kimiagarov’s As the Heart Commands (1968) and One Life Is Not Enough (1974) and Ra-khimov’s antireligious film Beneath the Ashes Is a Fire (1967). Firdausi’s epic Shah-nameh was adapted to the screen in The Tale of Rustam and Rustam and Sukhrab (1971), directed by Kimiagarov. The life of the eminent 19th-century Tadzhik thinker A. Donish was portrayed in Star in the Night (1972), directed by A. Rakhimov and I. Usov. The six-part television film Those Who Were Nothing Will Become Everything (1974–75, directed by Sabirov) showed the revolutionary path of the Tadzhik people and the building of a new life.

Notable achievements in documentary film-making include Hail, Tadzhikistan (1960), Four Songs of Tadzhikistan (1964), and Cradle of My Verses (1971). Interesting examples of “journalism in images” are E. Kuzin’s Tiger Gully (1963), A Handful of Mother Earth (1968), and The House Is Being Sold (1973); S. Khamidov’s Abd al-Rahman Jami (1965); A. Mansurov’s Seven Beauties (1964); D. Khudonazarov’s Lullaby (1966); L. Kimiagarova’s Abdulla Rakhimbaev (1967) and Khashar (1972); V. Ervais’ Light (1969) and Film (1971); V. Fomin’s I Am the Land (1970) and Build a Ship (1974); and B. Saykov’s The Pass (1971). The first Tadzhik cartoons were Song of the Mountains (1969), Good Nasim (1970), and Afandi, the Donkey, and the Thieves (1971). The satirical film series Kaltak (The Stick) has been issued since 1971. Each year some 42 films are translated into Tadzhik and dubbed.

Major contributions to the development of Tadzhik cinematography have been made by the directors K. Iarmatov, B. Kimiagarov, T. Sabirov, and A. Rakhimov, the director of dubbing K. Olimi, the cameramen V. Kuzin, I. Baramykov, and N. Tilliaev, the artist D. Il’iabaev, and the screenwriter S. Ulug-zoda. Actors from other Union republics have performed in Tadzhik films. The Cinematographers’ Union of the Tadzhik SSR was established in 1962. The republic had about 1,100 motion-picture projection units in 1975.


Akhrorov, A. Tadzhikskoe kino (1929–1969). Dushanbe, 1971.
Dzhurabaev, S. Kinoiskusstvo Sovetskogo Tadzhikistana. Moscow, 1970.
Mirzoshoev, S. Rohi kinoi tojik. Dushanbe, 1973.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.