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For all, who are interested in the Orient

Oriental Collection № 2/2011

This issue opens with the picture story 'Kyoto' by Yelizaveta Malinina, published as our 'Impressions' section.

The eternal beauty and harmony of the imperial city contrast with the images of the colossal devastation of human creation. Kseniya Leschenko in her article entitled 'The Japanese View of Natural Calamities' analyses the role of spiritual factors that enable the Japanese to be steadfast and coordinated in overcoming the aftermath of the catasrophe of March 2011.

Armenian Notebook

  • Inna Mokretsova. The Gospel from Vaspurakan. By efforts of the restorers, the Old Armenian manuscript Gospel of the 15th century is brought back to life. The manuscript, which is kept in the Russian State Library, follows the tradition of Armenian book culture; it is illuminated with miniatures and more than 200 decorative initials and marginal images.
  • Mariya Romanova. 'Matenadaran' Means 'Book Storage'. A report from Matenadaran, the Institute of Ancient Manuscripts in Yerevan.
  • Vladimir Kolupayev. The Monastery on the Island of San Lazzaro. San Lazzaro degli Armeni, the monastery that is situated on the island in the Venetian Lagoon, is one of the centres of Oriental culture in Europe. In 1717, the island was given by the city of Venice to the group of Armenian Catholics.

Maksim Mikhalyov. The Great Illusion. 'It seems that five letters comprising the word ‘Tibet’, are the code, which is able to draw the soul back to our world, which has long ago lost its magic and became dull', thinks the author. 'We need a fairy tale, the Great Illusion, and for this Tibet is the ideal match...' Traveling through the historical area of Amdo, the author has met ordinary people, occupied with mundane problems, at the same time making sure that the Great Illusion never disappears.

Anastasiya Schedrina. Elephants, Powerty, Spices, and Cinema... The polling of young users of Russian social network, vkontakte.ru, showed that their impression of India is far from modern Indian reality. Our young compatriots have the generally positive image of this country, but they still lack some knowledge...

Mark Goloviznin. Brunei: a Small Country of Great Ambition. Russian citizens are still rare guests of this small country, situated on the island of Kalimantan. Having visited the place for the conference, the author has learned and seen quite a lot of curiosities.

Yelena Voytishek. 'The Symposium Near Bent Water'. In the Far East, the 'people of culture' have a long tradition of literary games, accompanied by wine drinking. Until now in Japan, in the temple gardens, the elegant tournaments are held two times a year: while a rouse of sacred wine is floating along the meandering channel, the players must compose a piece of poetry with predermined subject. The author’s essay describes this process.

Kirill Demichev. The Royal Hunt in the Land of Five Rivers. The hunt has always played an important part in the life of the rulers of Punjab. It was a part of court culture, and had traditional rituals and functions. When, in the mid-19th century, the British had annexed Punjab, the traditions of the magnificent Sikh court became the history together with the last indigenous empire of Indian subcontinent.

Andrey Shugayev. Following Russian Fleet, Holding Postcards. A postcard collector from Moscow has made a fascinating tour of Menzel Bourguiba, a town located in Tunisia, not far from Bizerta. Quite a few of the places shown on postcards, are related to the history of Russian fleet that left Crimea in late 1920.

Nikolay Listopadov. It’s a Long Way to Mrauk-U. The journey to the Arakan state of Myanmar, which has the temple complexes with numerous sanctuaries and images of Buddha.

Natalya Kazurova. The Space of Iranian Cinema. Today’s generation of Iranian directors create the canons of the new Iranian cinema. In their works, we see not the country that is reproduced on touristic postcards, but the real Iran, recorded with nonfictional precision.

Gennadiy Goryachkin. From Odessa to Saint-Petersburg. The author presents to the reader the person of Rashad-bey, the Egyptian judge who, in the early 1914, had made a great tour of Russia, visiting mainly the areas that were densely inhabited by Moslems. A part of his book, The Travel to Russia, published together with the article, shows the country as it was seen then by the guest from abroad.

Yelena Breus. Everything for Living the Afterlife. In China, the latest achievements of science and technology get along together with the century-long ideas of afterlife that date back to the most ancient tradition of ancestor worship. Just as many centuries ago, the deceased receives everything that is needed for afterlife: symbolic money, clothes, consumer electronics, phones, and computers...

The Orientnet section is devoted to traditional Oriental alcoholic beverages.

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