Life on the edge: Border-making and agrarian policies in the Aim district (Eastern Fergana), 1924-1929

Beatrice Penati

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4 Citations (Scopus)


In 1927 the Aim canton, which the national delimitation of 1924 had assigned to Kirgizia, was split in two parts and the larger of them was assigned to the Uzbek SSR. Besides the intrinsic interest of such a redefinition of the frontier, this had the important consequence of precipitating a sort of micro-land reform for this handful of villages only (as Fergana had already undergone it) on the basis of a specific decree. First, by projecting the petitions and decisions on the “correction” of the border against this socio-economic background, this article demonstrates the spread of discursive tropes pertaining to Soviet-style economic development in shaping the “nationalist” rhetoric of a variety of actors, and argues that such tropes were decisive in making the latter acceptable. Second, by exploiting the special situation of Aim and the consequent abundant documentation, this article casts light on the decision-making process at the basis of the land reform, both in general and in this particular locality, focusing on the distance between plans and achievements and on the manipulation of social categories.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)193-230
Number of pages38
JournalAb Imperio
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • History
  • Sociology and Political Science

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