UZBEKISTAN: A Collection of Uzbek Short Stories translated by Mahmuda Saydumarova

A Collection of Uzbek Short Stories is a slim volume, translated into English by Mahmuda Saydumarova. Saydumarova moved from Uzbekistan to Saudi Arabia when she was a child, and went into academia there studying and teaching English and linguistics. She compiled and translated this collection at only 23, intending this to be a brief introduction to Uzbek literature for Western audiences.

The short stories come from a broad range of authors – some written in the first half of the 20th century, some very recent. There’s an interesting mix of tones, some feel more like a parable, others a family drama. “The Sensitive Case” by Farhod Musajonov really intrigued me – a village manager and comedian trying to outwit each other in applying the language of bureaucracy to laughter itself.

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