Zuleikha p.1 by Yakhina
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This week, Matt and Cameron tackle the first half of Zuleikha by Guzel Yakhina, following the story of the so-called ‘Pitiful Hen,’ as her farm is collectivized, her husband is killed, and she is sent half-way across the USSR to build her own prison. With a great focus on the integration of pagan folklore and (then) modern Islam and a surprising number of action-filled setpieces, Zuleikha is an absolute joy to read and talk about. Sit back, crack open a home-made berry moonshine, and tune in!
Major themes: Forest spirits, Vestigial pagan folklore, and Dekulakization
03:00 - Here’s a link to the article that I heavily cited in this episode: Fear and Belief in the USSR’s “Great Terror”: Response to Arrest, 1935-1939.