Wild East: Travels in the New Mongolia

Wild East: Travels in the New Mongolia

Jill Lawless


For such a lot people, the identify Mongolia evokes unique pictures of untamed horsemen, unending grasslands, and nomads — a undying and mysterious land that also is, in lots of methods, person who time forgot. less than Genghis Khan, the Mongols’ empire stretched throughout Asia and into the center of Europe. yet over the centuries Mongolia disappeared from the world’s realization, overshadowed and ruled by way of its large neighbours — first China, which governed Mongolia for hundreds of years, then Russia, which reworked the feudal state into the world’s moment communist country. Jill Lawless arrived in Mongolia within the overdue Nineteen Nineties to discover a rustic waking from centuries of isolation, immediately rediscovering its history as a nomadic and Buddhist society and at the same time learning the western international. the result's a land of attention-grabbing, bewildering contrasts: an unlimited state the place nomadic herders graze their sheep and yaks at the steppe, it additionally has one of many world’s optimum literacy degrees and a burgeoning high-tech scene. whereas fashionable young ones rollerblade amid the Soviet house blocks of Ulaanbaatar and dance to the most recent pop tune in nightclubs, and the wealthy force Mercedes and surf the web, greater than part the inhabitants nonetheless lives in felt tents, scratching out a dwelling in a single of the world’s most harsh landscapes. Mongolia, it may be argued, is the archetypal 21st-century country, a rustic waking from a tumultuous twentieth century during which it was once wrenched from feudalism to communism to capitalism, looking for its position within the new millennium. it is a humorous and revealing portrait of a pretty, stricken kingdom whose destiny holds classes for all of us.

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