The primary sources that have been covered in this course are Travels in the Caucus and Georgia by Klaproth, The Captain’s Daughter and other stories by Alexandra Pushkin, A Hero of Our Time By Mikhail Lermontov , “The Russian Conquest and Rule of Central Asia,”, Sketches of Central Asia by Arminius Vambery, The Cossacks and Other Stories by Leo Tolstoy, “Prisoner of the Caucasus” by Alexander Pushkin,“ A Prisoner in the Caucasus” by Leo Tolstoy and Quiet Flows the Don by Sholokov. All of these sources are similar in that they present the values, culture, society and geographical description of the Eurasian Frontiers. For instance, the Sketches of Central Asia and Travels in the Caucus and Georgia lay a lot of emphasis on describing the various tribes in Eurasia. A Prisoner in the Caucus by both Leo Tolstoy and Alexandra Pushkin capture the description of geographical areas within Eurasia. Some themes are common in books. For instance, the themes of war, conquest, and ethnic conflicts are common.
There are significant differences between the sources. The main difference is in the way that the content is told. Travels in the Caucus and Georgia by Klaproth and Sketches of Central Asia by Arminius Vambery are told in the first person who makes them more of a personal reflection. The aspect of personal reflection is mainly seen in Sketches of Central Asia by Arminius Vambery when he offers individual opinions such as ‘’ about his observations. Also, the two works by Klaproth and Arminius Vambery and also The Russian Conquest and Rule of Central Asia by Sauce K are told in a narrative form without literary devices such as characters. By contrast, The Captain’s Daughter and other stories by Alexandra Pushkin, A Hero of Our Time By Mikhail Lermontov, The Cossacks and Other Stories by Leo Tolstoy, Prisoner of the Caucasus” by Alexander Pushkin,“ A Prisoner in the Caucasus” by Leo Tolstoy and Quiet Flows the Don by Sholokov feature a main character who reflects on his life using the ‘I ‘ pronoun or narration by the author using the third person. Another difference in the books is the themes. Some of them such as The Captain’s Daughter and other stories, A Hero of Our Time By Mikhail Lermontov, The Cossacks and Other Stories dwell more on social issues such as love, relationships, and ethnic conflicts. By contrast, Travels in the Caucus and Georgia by Klaproth, “The Russian Conquest and Rule of Central Asia, and Sketches of Central Asia by Arminius Vambery mainly dwell on history, political issues, and personal ideologies.
The primary value about Eurasian Frontier that comes out in all the books is exploration. The authors depict a culture of people who are eager to find out more about others. The act of exploration is seen as a ‘service to the state’ as stated by Julias Von Klaproth in Travels in the Caucus and Georgia. The exploration leads to admiration as well as criticism of other people cultures. Each of the tribes in the Eurasian frontier puts a lot of significance in their culture and identity as a people. This loyalty is the leading cause of ethnic hatred as each one of them tries to resist influence by the others. Loyalty is also seen as a valuable quality in the way that characters are willing to serve the military and other political seats on behalf of the people. The individuals who are also conducting the exploration of Eurasia also believe they are offering a service to their state.
The sources that I found interesting are The Captain’s Daughter and other stories, A Hero of Our Time, The Cossacks and Other Stories and Travels in the Caucus and Georgia. The first three were interesting because the authors presented them in a lively manner. They used characters who are common in fiction stories to reflect issues that are taking place in the society such as war. For instance, Pushkin presents the theme of love through the prisoner and the Circassian while at the same time showing the topic of ethnic conflict between Circassians and Russians. The most intriguing aspect was Pushkin’s ability to incorporate beautiful poems or folk songs in his work. The Travels in the Caucus and Georgia was exciting because of the author’s attention to detail. It provides valuable information about the tribes and geographical areas in Eurasia in a very detailed manner.
There are benefits and difficulties in studying human values through literary and artistic representations. The main advantage is art and literature serves as a reflection of society. Therefore, a person can understand society and trace its evolution by analyzing literally work. Generally, literature brings human values such as religion and conflicts back to life even if they occurred in the past. The downside is that art and literature is prone to subjectivity from the author. He/she perceives and presents his/her work from a personal perspective. Therefore, it is difficult to determine which elements of human values are represented in an actual manner and which ones are biased. A typical example form the sources xx who defines the tribes in Central Asia using terms such as ‘Idleness’ and ‘Fanaticism’ which is a clear indication of personal opinion and some level of prejudice and generalization. This description might not be necessarily truth because of the biased approach.
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