The Notion of 'Kazakhness' Behind the Symbolic Nation-Building of Kazakhstan
CEU Political Science Journal, Vol. 9, No. 1-2, 2014, 16-38
23 Pages Posted: 25 Jun 2014
The paper deals with the processes of overcoming Russian 'colonial' impediments to the creation of symbolic spaces for the emergence of a new national selfconsciousness in Kazakhstan. The paper highlights the importance of Nazarbaev’s decision to transfer to and construct a new capital Astana in fostering the ideas of national identity and ethnic belonging. Therefore, an attempt has been made to observe the phenomena of urbanization and reformulation of state symbols in explaining both ethnic and civic mechanisms of influences on people’s consciousness. Additionally, the works of various Kazakh intellectuals and cultural figures have been taken into consideration to examine the notion of Kazakhness and its’ contribution to the development of the Kazakh national identity. Content analysis of architectural design of Astana and state symbols is essential to understand the vision of Kazakhstan’s imagined future.
Keywords: Astana, post-Soviet, post-colonial, national identity, nation building
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