Kazakh literature translated into German

Kazakh literature translated into German

Since the launch of the project ‘Kazakh library’ in 2006 in Germany, 25 Kazakh book collections have been translated into German. This figure coincides with the 25th anniversary of Kazakhstan’s independence. The project started with the publication of the book by Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev ‘In the Heart of Eurasia’, thanks to which German readers have learned how the young capital of Kazakhstan had been built and developed. After all, the history of Astana is the history of independent Kazakhstan. Afterwards, in Germany many other books were published such as ‘Abay Zholy’ by Mukhtar Auezov, novels by Abish Kekilbayev, poems of Fariza Ongarsynova, works of Olzhas Suleimenov and Mukaghali Makatayev. Thus, German readers were able to discover the distinctive and rich world of Kazakh literature.



I am happy to attend the presentation of 25 books, which are devoted to the 25th anniversary of Kazakhstan’s independence. Explosions, wars may shake the world, but only literature, culture unite the people and therefore translation of classical Kazakh literature into German starting from Abay, Dukenbay Doszhanov is a great contribution to the treasury of Kazakh culture as well as bilateral relations.


According to the German literary scholar Leonhard Kossuth, it was hard to work to translate the distinguished classics of Kazakhstan. But he remembers, after starting translation of the first lines of a poem by Abai, he was overwhelmed with this work.



 Kazakh people have different poetics, philosophy, history, and even the way poems and rhymes are constructed. It is completely different than German literature. When translating the works, you have to be inspired by what you do. My work has brought me a lot of pleasure. I remember when my assistant heard that I translated Abai, he said: Abai has finally spoken in German.


Connoisseurs of literature consider the project ‘Kazakh library’ to be really unique and expect new publications, which in turn will make Kazakhstan even more recognizable abroad.


Photo: kazpravda.kz