On February 8, Dr. Marlene Laruelle delivered the 2018 Annual Nava’i Nalle Lecture titled “Kazakhstan’s Nationhood: Politics and Society on the Move.”
Kazakhstan offers a multifaceted state narrative about the nation’s identity, with several competing repertoires: Kazakhness, Kazakhstaness, and a third one, advancing a transnational and modernizing brand for the country. Each of these three narratives target different audiences (the Kazakh-speaking, the Russian-speaking, and the international community) and intimately interconnect domestic and foreign policy strategies. Thirty years after the perestroika, the country is still facing profound changes in its nation-building, with growing interactions between the state organs and several segments of the society. In her presentation, Marlene Laruelle discussed the ongoing evolutions of Kazakhstan’s nationhood and sociological changes pushing for a more Kazakhness-centered agenda.
Marlene Laruelle, Ph.D., is an Associate Director and Research Professor at the Institute for European, Russian and Eurasian Studies (IERES), Elliott School of International Affairs, The George Washington University. Dr. Laruelle is also a Co-Director of PONARS (Program on New Approaches to Research and Security in Eurasia), and Director of GW’s Central Asia Program. Dr. Laruelle received her Ph.D. in history at the National Institute of Oriental Languages and Cultures (INALCO) and her post-doctoral degree in political science at Sciences-Po in Paris.