I’ve previously shared what I know of modern Kazakh names, as have other authors. But what about ancestral names? My motivation here is a growing connection to the SCA, a group fond of historical fencing, archery, brewing, and crafts. These
Hey! I’m headlining at Sapiens, a lovely and well-researched anthropology website: This article reflects on the stories of Kazakh women who sell imported products for companies like Mary Kay, Xango, and Neways, and what leads them into and out of
Most books are made in factories, and even boutique presses use machines alongside hand labor to create a small run of books: But you can also craft a high-quality book by hand. A few years ago, I got to watch British bookbinder Jonathan
I get a lot of readers curious about Kazakhstan, and about working as a librarian abroad. In this post, I’ll share how I got abroad, moved up, and then transitioned back to my home country, the United States. This is
I moved back from Kazakhstan last year, but I still have posts that never quite made it to the blog. Here’s one on the good life: Seven is a popular numbers among Kazakhs, as our language teacher reminded us the other day.
Below, Murat and his Kazakh family build a yurt in the highland plains of Western Mongolia. I made this draft of a children’s ebook two years ago for the pupils at my school in Kazakhstan. View pictures of how a yurt
I’ve been taking a free course on statistical inference online, which mentioned the World Values Survey. For this survey, interviewers ask people about religious, political, sexual, community, and life values. I haven’t looked at whether sample size, selection, fear of interviewers,
March 21st, First Day of Spring Annie calls at 10am, and I roll over to pick up the phone. “Banya, at 10:45, you coming?” “I… maybe,” I say, gravelly-voiced. “Call you back in five.” I contemplate the possibilities. Sleep in
I’m not only amazing, but I’ve got amazing friends –and I’d like to share more about what they’ve been doing. Ersatz Expat writes great blog posts for expatriates, and Alexandra Sutton promotes entrepreneurship in Africa. Cool stuff, and you can read more
I’m often asked by young Kazakhs how they can study abroad, and I don’t have an easy answer. It’s a long process and sometimes you have to apply again and again to get funding to study in America or Europe.
My first encounter with missionaries—like that of so many children—involved presents. A Christmas bauble from Burkina Faso, given out to each child at a small church in Ohio. A stick of Juicy Fruit from the American woman in a burqa,
I recently went with friends to spend a week in Shymkent, the largest city in Kazakhstan. It’s known as the “Texas” of Kazakhstan for its wild ways, large desert landscape, and sprawling population. I’ve made a video/photo montage with Kazakh
I’ve just returned from a trip to south Kazakhstan over the May holidays. Above is my favorite photo from the trip, a shot of the hillside carved away at the ruins of Otyrar. If you imagine a nice big mud-brick
Low in a cardboard box in the entryway, Yucca shoves himself into the corner of his cage. Before him, fine hands scatter chopped lettuce (a precious commodity, here) and fill a dim platter with water. Stepping back from the turtle,
I often snap a bunch of similar shots when out taking pictures, and although usually I delete the duplicates, sometimes I catch a nice effect when flipping through the pictures quickly: I’m sure you’ve seen it, but ‘wiggle GIFs’ create