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Blogs about Tajikistan

www.travelblog.org

Tajikistan Travel Blogs, Photos, Hotel and Hostel Listing from TravelBlog.org.

www.tajikistanjournal.blogspot.com/

Tajikistan depends almost entirely on hydroelectric generation. Its reservoirs are empty, there is no snowmelt or rain to fill them. Today, all …

lens.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/01/02/life-along-a-road-in-tajikistan/

Photos of a road, and life along a road. Mytro Papadopoulos is documenting an isolated trade route in the poor former Soviet nation of …

www.neweurasia.net/blogroll-tajikistan/

A Dervish is one of the oldest Tajik blogs, founded in 2004. The author says he is looking for the truth of the …

registan.net/2010/05/03/tajikistan-news-and-blogs/

Hi everybody, I’m building an online research portal for Tajikistan. It’s sure to bring me fame, money and widespread international praise, I’m …

Along a nearly inaccessible road in Tajikistan, the Greek photographer Myrto Papadopoulos is pursuing a quiet story of growth and change in a small, isolated society.

Ms. Papadopoulos’s project, “The New Plastic Road,” follows Liu Xin Jun, a Chinese truck driver, and Davlat, a Tajik merchandiser, along a trade route in the Pamir Mountains. From the town of Khorog, the most developed in the region, east to Murghab, a former Russian military post at high altitude close to the Chinese border, she sought to explore socioeconomic and political development in an area known as Badakhshan. Basic necessities — food, water and electricity — are lacking in the area, in part because it is so far from the capital of Tajikistan, Dushanbe.

Ms. Papadopoulos sought images of the road, and life on the road.

“What we wanted to see is how this road really affects the society,” Ms. Papadopoulos said. “And do people receive what they want now with this opening of trade.”

Tajikistan is a very poor former Soviet state. Its nearly inaccessible roads have hurt development. To reach Khorog, Ms. Padadopoulos endured a long and difficult drive through the mountains. “That’s how the region is,” she said. “There are very difficult places to reach.”

Virtually unreachable in the winter months, it is anything but a haven for tourism. Aside from a group of bikers and one or two mountaineers, Ms. Papadopoulos met few other travelers. “If something happens to you there,” she said, “it just happens.”

The road, which was reconstructed by China and opened in 2004, has also been a haven for drug-trafficking.

With China’s trade increase in central Asia, though, the situation has been changing. “All these things are suddenly moving,” Ms. Papadopoulos said.

Ms. Padadopoulos was featured on Lens in September 2011 (“In the Grecian Caves Where Time Slows Down,” Sept. 22). This was her first trip to central Asia. She plans to go to China and find the source of the trade, “where all these things are and where do they go.” The project will ultimately become a film about China’s investments in central Asia, which she is working on with her partner, Angelos Tsaousis.

The first trip was, for the most part, exploratory. “I tried to photograph what I saw,” Ms. Padadopoulos said.

In a way, she said, the environment — always very dark at night — felt peaceful. She especially felt that peace when photographing women.

“I really enjoyed sharing moments with the women. I felt very strong.”

And yet she felt a sense of melancholy, which comes out in the pictures — painterly, almost mystical. “I felt there was a sadness to them,” she said.

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