For better or worse, Turkish culture exerts a considerable influence on modern Azerbaijani youth culture. While for many films, television, music, and literature from Turkey offer a window into the wider world, some worry it is supplanting Azerbaijan’s own culture. [Read more…]
On 14 March, the Circassian people celebrate the Day of Circassian Language and Writing. Circassian, a native language of the North Caucasus, faces many serious challenges, including a lack of official support, a divided literary standard, a decreasing interest in learning it in educational institutions, and a diminishing presence at home. [Read more…]
Almost three decades after independence, Russian language still plays a large role in Azerbaijan. Many of the country’s schools and universities are divided: into the Azerbaijani-medium Azsector, and a Russian-language sector. But the divide goes far beyond the language: graduates of the Russian sector often see themselves as the elites of society, more progressive, more open-minded, and more cultured. In turn, they are portrayed as aloof, unpatriotic, and not ‘real’ Azerbaijanis. [Read more…]
Learning Azerbaijani is becoming more and more popular in Armenia. While the two countries remain in a near-war-like state, some emphasise the strategic importance of ‘know thy enemy’, while others seek a better understanding of their disconnected neighbours.
A woman from Maykop, the capital of the Republic of Adygea, has won the right to speak with employees of the Magnit supermarket in her native Circassian (Adyghe) language. [Read more…]