The Child Of Emigration
There is telling the Cand.Phil.Sci., the senior
lecturer, chief of " Romanic and German
languages" chair of Slavic
University. Chairman of « the Society of
friendship Azerbaijan - France» Elmira Faradjulaeva.
I'm sure that
one can't condense the problems of woman's activity to the certain public or
political actions, such as "she was leading, appealing" and so on. In my
opinion it is impossible to research the woman's stories without culturologic,
Can you refer to a concrete person's
Of course! The
talented Azerbaijan writer Banin (Um-El-Banin), representative of public
figures Pleiad of culture formed her character in the emigration. Her father
Mirza Asadullaev was a Trade Minister in the period of Azerbaijan Democratic
Republic. After the usurpation of power by Bolsheviks in April of 1920 the
family was forced to leave Azerbaijan. France became their country of
emigration. The girl of fifteen was rushing in the search of work: she was a
mannequin, shop-assistant, secretary, translator. But she got to know
democratic values, she was absorbed into the France world art, associated with
famous Russian emigrants: Bunin, Tolstoy, Shaliapin.
On the one
hand trying to integrate herself to the new society as its full member she was
intelligently keeping out of the way of events that took place in her native
land. She was accumulating the experience of new philosophy, also developing
the sharp, realistic and even pragmatic understanding of the past, her last
life. On the other hand in her creation Banin again returned to the topics
connected with Azerbaijan, created the works that were based on her own
experience. She had no necessity to create any special situations, places the
imaginary characters within them. The very life gave the pictures of behavior
of the concrete persons in the concrete positions, their evolution or
degradation in the chains of social and political, philosophical and art
In the novel
"Caucasian Days" Banin described the progressive tendencies of her family, its
attractions towards Western way of life that had been arisen on the background
of Eastern tradition and even patriarchal foundations. The same problem of West and East values ran though her works
"Nami", "Paris Days". Azerbaijan roots put out abundant shoots within her soul
of future writer and bought her in their development to the understanding of
her own belonging to the world culture, super-national and super-religious philosophical
What Azerbaijan roots do you mean?
She was a
granddaughter of the largest oil industrialists. Her maternal grandfather was
Musa Nagiev, her paternal father was Shamsi Asadullaev. Moreover, both the
grandfathers became the rich at the expense of Absheron oil fields and engaged
in charity without being greedy. In the emigration Um-El-Banin wrote about
Shamsi Asadullaev and Musa Nagiev, "The came into the world as the poor and
left it as millionaires".
By the way, it was Shamsi Asadullaev who offered Khanum
Azizbekova the room in his private residence for meetings of woman's society.
There cultivated the spirit of West-European civilization in her family, there
paid much attention to education. Her father invited a governess named Anna
from German specially for Um-El-Banin. Overall, both the families treated this
girl very tremblingly, she got a very old name Um-El-Banin in honor of her
mother who had died during the childbirth.
were famous by their patriotic traditions. In 1918, in the period of Armenian
massacres the Asadullaevs came to Iran, but when the situation had allowed it,
they come back home. It was no accident that theme of Motherland permanently
sounded in the works created by Um-El-Banin.
the most significant figure in the literature of Azerbaijan emigration today.
Studying the philosophical and aesthetic content of her creation will become
the matter of Azerbaijan specialists of the
Arts and their French colleagues in the near future. The cultural sheets
of her art creation can be understood by only united efforts of scientists who
represent three cultural regions: Azerbaijan, France and Russian.
You wrote that Um-El-Banin's creations had been
Azerbaijani and French at the same time. It was connected with the influence on
the writer of the very country of emigration.
was received in France as a "Child of emigration" of former Russian empire.
There is a story "The Last Duel Of Ivan Bunin" by Banin. It is interesting in
the aspect of interrelations of West and East, Russia and Azerbaijan, their
cultural traditions and mutual connections. Um-El-Banin had relations of
friendship with Ivan Bunin who was described by her as a patriarch, aging but
not loosing his large humane fascination, real classic Russian literature
emigration. They had different attitudes to former Russian empire and its
national marches, Soviet Union and its interrelations with emigrants. Their
understanding of creation language that develops in the emigration country and
connects with the writer's past and present time testifies to two different
approaches to these problems. In spite of her youth Um-El-Banin is a true
phenomenon of Azerbaijan culture.