Sat, 20 Jul 2019

Earlier this month, a video was posted on the Internet of a young woman in Kyrgyzstan performing a song, Kyz (Girl). Nineteen-year-old Zere Asylbek's words spoke of respect for other people's decisions, and in particular called on society to allow woman and girls to make their own choices.

The lyrics, and Zere's attire in the video, sparked praise and criticism and rekindled a long-running debate in Kyrgyzstan, and more generally in Central Asia, about women's rights and the role of women in contemporary Central Asian societies.

RFE/RL's media-relations manager, Muhammad Tahir, moderated a discussion on the state of feminism in Central Asia and efforts toward greater gender equality in the region.

From Finland, Kamila Sultanova, originally from Uzbekistan but now a social activist heading the Finnish branch of the nongovernmental organization Global Dignity, joined the discussion. From Kyiv, Bermet Talant, originally from Kyrgyzstan, author of many articles about Central Asia, and currently working as a correspondent in Ukraine, participated as well. And from Kyrgyzstan, Zere Asylbek, whose video has brought fresh attention to the issue of gender equality in Central Asia, took part in the conversation. I said a few things, but you only learn when you listen, not when you speak.

Embed share Majlis Podcast: New Wave Of Feminism In Central Asia by RadioFreeEurope/RadioLiberty Embed share The code has been copied to your clipboard. The URL has been copied to your clipboard Share on Facebook Share on Twitter No media source currently available

0:00 0:40:23 0:00 Direct link 64 kbps | MP3 Pop-out player

Listen to the podcast above or subscribe to the Majlis on iTunes.

RFE/RL's Kyrgyz Service, known locally as Azattyk, recently interviewed Zere Asylbek (in Russian):

Bruce Pannier

Bruce Pannier writes the Qishloq Ovozi blog and appears regularly on the Majlis podcast for RFE/RL. FOLLOW Subscribe via RSS Muhammad Tahir

Muhammad Tahir, a former director of RFE/RL's Turkmen Service, currently serves as RFE/RL's media relations manager in Washington, D.C. FOLLOW Subscribe via RSS

Copyright (c) 2018. RFE/RL, Inc. Republished with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave NW, Ste 400, Washington DC 20036

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