From Manhattan to Mongolia: Global Humanities

Phillip Marzluf with D. Tsogt-Ochir, leader of the Democratic Movement and former Mongolian parliament member (photograph taken in 1995, Selenge, Mongolia)

Although everyone has heard of the 1917 Russian Communist Revolution, few know about the world’s second communist revolution, the Mongolian 1921 People’s Revolution, which made Mongolia independent of the nascent Republic of China and began a close Russian Soviet relationship for the next 70 years in the shape of the Mongolian People’s Republic (1924-1992).

Socialist and Post-Socialist Mongolia (Simon Wickhamsmith and Phillip Marzluf, editors), which includes 14 chapters and the contributions of 17 researchers, marks the 100-year anniversary of the People’s Revolution and explores its profound effects on Mongolian culture and society in the 20th and 21st century.

Socialist and Post-Socialist Mongolia showcases work in the humanities and the social sciences, including literature, art, film studies, history, music, linguistics and sociolinguistics, ethnic studies, and anthropology.

Interested in how female actors were used to promote socialist modern and scientific ideals in Mongolian film – and hear about the exploration of crossing gender boundaries in the 1963 Ene Khüükhnüüd Üü? (Oh, the Ladies!)? Check out Zoljargal Enkh-Amgalan’s Chapter 7, “‘Faces of the State’: Film and State Propaganda in Socialist Mongolia.”

Ene Khüükhnüüd Üü? (Oh, the Ladies!) (Univision, 1963)

How about the professionalization of Mongolian folk musical traditions (Sunmin Yoon’s Chapter 10, “Shadows of a Heroic Singer: The Legacy of J. Dorjdagva and Its Impact on the Mongolian Long-Song Tradition”) or the importation of European classical musical forms and tastes (Baatarnaran Tsetsentsolmon’s Chapter 9, “‘Running in My Blood’: The Musical Legacy of State Socialism in Mongolia)? Enticed by how the Mongolian government adapted the Tibetan script to transliterate socialist messages for Buddhist monks? Explore Myagmar Saruul-Erdene’s Chapter 5, “Official Script Changes in Socialist Mongolia.”

Cover of the Journal of the Lamas

Or, finally, how about the Mongolian People’s Revolutionary Party’s reactions to modern art? See Uranchimeg Tsultemin’s Chapter 8, “‘Capitalist Art’ and the Invention of Tradition in Twentieth-Century Mongolia.”

G. Odon, “Ajlyn Daraa” (“After Work”) (1958)

For more information about Socialist and Post-Socialist Mongolia, please go to the Routledge website, where you can access Chapters 2 and 3 for free.

Phillip Marzluf, Professor

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