Erika Fatland
Sovietistan. A Journey Through Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tadzhikistan and Uzbekistan

In her third documentary account, Erika Fatland takes the reader on a journey that is unknown to even the most seasoned globetrotter. The five former Soviet Republics’ Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan all became independent when the Soviet Union fell apart in 1991. How have these countries developed since then? With this in mind, Erika Fatland explores with her usual compassion and vast knowledge of these societies, their recent and ancient history, their culture and landscapes. She invites the reader to witness griping human encounters and interesting accounts of how the Soviet heritage has influenced these countries, where the governing rule varies between experiments in democracy to pure dictatorship – a few of them with a personal cult and mismanagement unlike any other.
In these countries, that used to be the furthest border of the Soviet Union, life follows another pace of time. Alexander the Great’s army brought with them the walnut from Arslanbob in Kyrgyzstan to Europe, and in the Yagnob Valley on the border of Tajikistan and Uzbekistan the population still speak Sogdian, the main language of the silk trail. In between the treasures of Samarkand and the bleakness of Soviet architecture, Erika Fatland moves with her openness towards the people and the landscapes around her. A rare and unforgettable travelogue.

Erika Fatland

Erika Fatland

Erika Fatland (b.1983) is a Norwegian author and social anthropologist. She has lived and travelled abroad extensively and speaks English, French, Russian, German, Italian and Spanish. Fatland has worked as a freelance journalist for a number of Norwegian journals and publications. For her thesis the field work was conducted in Beslan in North Caucasus, in 2007. Her book on the tragedy of Beslan, The Village of Angels, (2011) was nominated for the Norwegian Brage-prize. Fatland’s debut as an author came in 2009 with the children’s book, The Parent War. The book received good reviews and was chosen by the Norwegian Booksellers Association as part of the curriculum for Norwegian schools.

Rights sold to

Arab: Al-Arabi, Armenian: Fridtjof Nansen Foundation, Azerbaijani: Alatoran, Brazilian Portuguese: Ayiné, Bulgarian: Vakon, Chinese: Beijing Imaginist Time Culture, Croatian: Tim Press, Czech: Albatros, Danish: Informations Forlag, English (world): MacLehose, Estonian: Tänapäev, Finnish: Siltala Publishers, French: Gaïa Editions, German: Suhrkamp Verlag), India (Hindi and Bengali): Sampark, Italian: Marsilio, Dutch: De Geus, Polish: Foksal, Romanian: Editura Paralela 45, Russian: Ripol Classic Publishing Group, Spanish: Tusquets, Swedish: Leopard Förlag, Turkish: Ketebe Kitap.

Other titles

Året uten sommer, 2012
Englebyen, 2011 (Cappelen Damm)
Foreldrekrigen, children’s book, 2009 (Cappelen Damm)

Foreign rights

Copenhagen Literary Agency
Studiestræde 35
DK-1455 Copenhagen K
Tel: +45 33 132523
[email protected]


One of Ten New Voices From Europe 2016
One of Norway's 10 best authors under 35, by newspaper Morgenbladet, 2015
The Norwegian Bookseller’s Non-Fiction Prize 2015
The Wessel Prize 2016
Nominated for The Language Prize ("Språkprisen") 2016

Edited April 17, 2023 by Copenhagen Literary Agency