The Contemporary Kyrgyz Literature emerged in 1930s with amplification of the Soviet Union’s leader, Joseph Stalin’s, repressive practices. A great many writers of the Soviet period would not go beyond the topics and limits determined by the Union’s policy. This state, naturally, had a direct affect on the burgeoning Kyrgyz Literature, the development of which took place in this very context. The first historical novels, as they are currently recognized, started to emerge in the Kyrgyz Literature in 1960s. In 1991, after Kyrgyzstan gained its independence, as in any other field, writers also enjoyed full freedom of speech in the course of creating historical novels, drafting mainly novels described as historical biographies. Drawing attention among these works is Kanat Khan, a novel by Zhumakadyr Egemberdiev. Supported by documents, the novel narrates the life of Kanat Khan, who led his people in the revolts that broke out in 1916 against the tsarist government, their unsuccessful struggle for independence and the tragic events that followed the failed independence movement. The salience of the Zhumakadyr Egemberdiev’s novel that distinguishes it from other works depicting the Urkun Uprising of 1916 is the emphasis of the writer on the revolt being an organized national struggle for independence, rather than a responsive movement of the Kyrgyz people to recover their land from the Tsarist Russia. Historical biographies that emerge after 1991 as a new genre in the Kyrgyz novelism carry the sufficiency to fill in the “spiritual” gaps in “historical writings” that had been ignored for many years.
Soviet Literature, Contemporary Kyrgyz Literature, Historical Novel, Kanat Khan, Zhumakadyr Egemberd