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Imaginary Travels in Post- Socialist Mongolia

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image of Inner Asia

Until recently, when the Mongols have appeared in the world’s literature, they have usually appeared in the persons of chinggis Khaan or Khubilai, or as ‘Mongolian hordes’. Some recent writings are unlike earlier works of the twentieth century, regardless of the political orientation and situation of the writers. In this paper I examine three works published between 1992 and 2003 that exemplify radically different instances of that difference: Mongolski bedeker by Serbian novelist Svetislav Basara; Paměť mojí babičce by czech author Petra Hůlová; and Mongólia by the Brazilian writer Bernardo carvalho. With the certainties and stereotypes of the past discarded in these novels, contemporary Mongolia provides the setting for the authors’ encounters with the strangeness of the world at the turn of the millennium.

Affiliations: 1: Joseph Regenstein Library, University of Chicago, USA


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