Cover Osteuropa 4-5/2008

In Osteuropa 4-5/2008

The “Attack on the Desert” in Central Asia
On the Environmental History of the Soviet Union

Julia Obertreis

Deutsche Fassung


There are several approaches to writing an environmental history of the Soviet Union. The cult of technology, a specific understanding of progress and infrastructure policy would all have to be considered together. This makes it possible to reconstruct cotton cultivation and irrigation policy in Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. The 1950s and 1960s seem to be the key phase of a radical modernity that quickly caused ecological and economic damage, but also brought about a discussion of environmental issues in the Soviet Union.

(Osteuropa 4-5/2008, pp. 37–56)