Brill, Leiden, 2005 Iran and the Caucasus, 9.2 THE BUKHARIAN JEWS THROUGH THE LENSES OF THE 19TH CENTURY RUSSIAN PHOTOGRAPHERS RACHEL L. GOLDENWEISER Caucasian Centre for Iranian Studies, Yerevan The present paper will focus on the unique visual sources created by the Russian photographers Dmitrij Ermakov (1846-1916), S. M. Dudin, and S. M. Prokudin-Gorskij, as well as a number of anony- mous masters. These materials (mostly from the Armenian archives), vividly illustrate the cultural life of the Bukharian Jews in late 19th–beginning of the 20th century. The compositions of the photos are magnificent, well composed with a graphic image. The plethora of images depicting everyday life in the schools, houses and back alleys of the city of Bukhara and other urban centres of Central Asia, portraits of individuals and group pho- tos on the background of expansive landscapes and architectural de- tails of the historical buildings, were captured with great skill and pro- ficiency. The Jews of Bukhara are one of the oldest and most authentic Jew- ish communities in the world. They call themselves Isro’il or Yahudi, and speak a Tajik dialect of the Samarqand-Bukhara area. The ancestors of the Bukharian Jews moved to Central Asia
Iran and the Caucasus – Brill
Published: Jan 1, 2005
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