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Original scientific paper

Ethno-Cultural Heritage of the Peoples of West Pamir

Leila R. Dodykhudoeva

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page 147-159

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The paper presents a study on the West Pamir communities (Badakhshan, Tajikistan)
based on language data of the Pamir languages of East-Iranian origin. At present,
the ethnic groups of the West Pamir: Shughni, Rushani, Bartangi, Roshorvi, Khufi,
Ishkashimi andWakhi are communities of the Ismaili Shia Islam faith. The underlying
concept of the paper is that ethnic and cultural key-concepts take place in the origin of
the traditional beliefs and rituals and can be reliably reconstructed from the vocabulary
of a particular community. Pamir languages vocabulary of the Pamir ethnic communities
that uses East and West Iranian culturally significant terms may serve as a basis
for understanding the genesis of Pamir Ismailism, its particular way of absorbing external
cultures, and its present specific form. The purely linguistic criteria, like temporal
dimension (linguistic chronology), and geographic dispersion and mobility, are believed
to be critical for linking etymology to broader socio-cultural development context of the
Pamir communities socio-historical and cultural life. Contemporary social and linguistic
dynamics in the relations between nation, religion and language in Tajikistan needs
systematic research, and reasonable interpretation.


West Pamir; Pamir Ismailism; vocabulary analysis

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