Afghan art, art in what is now Afghanistan.
Already in the 3rd millennium BC There is evidence of urban civilization (including Mundigak near Kandahar in southern Afghanistan). The finds are based on Mesopotamian models (Zikurat) and the Harappa culture (ceramics). The land known in antiquity under the name of Bactria can also be assigned to the Hellenistic and Roman spheres of influence in art (Ai Khanum). It took off again under the Kushana; Kanishka had Surkh Kotal built; the Buddhist monasteries (Shotorak, Guldara, around 2nd – 3rd centuries AD; Hadda, Bamian, around 3rd – 7th centuries AD) were centers of Gandhara art. Sassanid influences were also included, e.g. B. Bamian.
From the 11th century onwards, Islam gained increasing influence. The most important Afghan monuments of Islamic art include the palace of Mahmuds (early 11th century), the two minarets (12th century) and the citadel (early 15th century) in Ghazni as well as the minaret of Jam (12th / 13th century)) in Ghor.
Art reached its peak under the Timurids in Afghanistan. is attested by the citadel and city wall (14th – 16th century) as well as the Great Friday Mosque and the minarets of the former madrasah (15th century) in Herat, the burial mosque of Caliph Ali in Mazar-e Sharif (late 15th century) and through the miniatures of the painting school of Herat founded under Bei Sonkor. The wood carvings (ancestral pictures, idols and the like) from Nuristan are a specialty. In the 20th century, a rich folk art developed. A modern or contemporary art is still in the early stages.
In 2001, important works of national art heritage, the two colossal Albuddhas of Bamyan (around 6th / 7th centuries), as well as a large part of the collections of the National Museum in Kabul, were destroyed by the Taliban regime. Efforts have been underway since 2002 to restore these two cultural focuses as far as possible.
Afghan literature, written and oral literature of Afghanistan, a country beginning with letter A according to COUNTRYAAH.COM. Written literature exists in Pashto and Dari (Persian).
In northern Afghanistan there is also another written and literary language called Turki, in which v. a. Texts of classical literature are handed down. The exclusive use of the term Afghan literature on Pashto literature is no longer considered contemporary.
The founding of the Durrani Empire (1747) marks the beginning of an independent Afghan statehood, but the beginnings of Afghan national literature can only be established in the 20th century.
While literary contacts with Iran already waned in the Safavid period (from the 16th century), Afghanistan was able to maintain its role as a mediator between the literatures of South and Central Asia until the early 20th century and thus remained a nationally important center of Persian literature. Persian poetry was largely influenced by the so-called Indian style (sabk-e hendi), the master of which was Abdolqader Bedel (* 1644, † 1720) from India. His works were imitated by Faqirollah Djalalabadi († 1781), Mehrdel Maschreqi (* 1798, † 1854), Gholam Mohammad Tarsi (* 1830, † 1900) and Mohammad Amin Andalib (* 1855, † 1875). In addition, the kings let themselves Timur Shah Durrani († 1793), Shah Schodscha (1842 †) and Abdorrahman Chan († 1901) in its sealing art as well as the poet Aischa Durrani continue († 1818/20) of older models such as Hafez or Jalal od Rumi conduct.
A literature written in Pashto can be traced back to the early 16th century. The Pashto poetry was initially based heavily on oral forms of poetry. Chushhal Chan Chattak (* 1613, † 1689) is considered the founder of classical Pashto literature, who tried to approximate models from Persian literature in form and content. His poetry ranges from mystical to moral-ethical to patriotic topics and is shaped by the struggle against the rule of the Great Mughals. He also used epic poetry (Baznama, Swatnama) and early Pashto prose (Dastarnama). Aschraf Chan Hidjri (* 1635, † 1694) and Abdulqadir Chan (* 1651, † 1712) followed his model in poetry. Rahman Baba (* 1632, † 1708), on the other hand, developed a style characterized by folk-oriented language with the treatment of mystical themes, which was continued by Mohammad Kakar (* 1708, † 1780). State founder Ahmed Shah Durrani left behind v. a. Love poetry in Pashto.
With the Anglo-Afghan wars of the 19th century, war and fighting themes became a popular subject both in Pashto poetry and among Persian-speaking poets, the latter (Hamid Kashmiri, »Akbarnama«, originated in 1866/67, published 1951/52; »Djangnama«, anonymous, published 1957) imitated classical models (Firdausi) in form and meter. While written literature was only handed down in handwritten form for centuries, printed products (initially sporadically from India, later from Kabul, Bukhara, Kokand and Tashkent) have been distributed since around 1850.
Journalism began to develop in the early 20th century. As a pioneer applies Mahmud Tarsi (* 1867, † 1935), the translations from French and Turkish anfertigte (J. Verne, among others), own journalistic prose written (“Report of a journey across three continents,” 1914-15) and the newspaper ” Seradj ol-Achbar Afghaniya «(1910-19) founded. It also contained one by Abdolali Mostaghni (* 1876, † 1934) headed the »National Literature« section with publications in Persian and Pashto. Local literary associations (Kabul 1931, Herat 1932, Kandahar 1933) preceded the establishment of the Pashto Society (1937) as a national literary center. The first short stories were written in the 1930s, which, in addition to travelogues, memoirs, radio plays and plays, still form the dominant genre of prose literature in Dari and Pashto to this day. In a largely realistic style, v. a. historical and socially critical issues are taken up. Well-known pioneers were Abdorrauf Benawa (* 1913, † 1985), Nur Mohammad Taraki (* 1917, † 1979), Gol Patscha Olfat (* 1910, † 1977), Abdol Ghafur Breschna (* 1907, † 1974), Qijamoddin Chadem (* 1912, † 1979), Rahnaward Sarjab (* 1944) and the writer Spogmay Saryab (* 1949). Chalilollah Chalili (* 1909, † 1987), who cultivated the Khorasani style (»Diwan«, 1960), is considered the leading Dari poet of the 20th century. When the civil war broke out, the centers of Afghan literature shifted to Pakistan (Peshawar), Iran and other western countries in the 1980s (Asadullah Habib, * 1941; Akram Osman, * 1937).
Anthologies: H. G. Raverty: Selections from the poetry of the Afghans from the sixteenth to the nineteenth century (1862); D. N. Mackenzie: Poems from the Diwan of Khushal Khan Khattak (1965); Modern storytellers of the world. Afghanistan, edited by H. Geerken (1977).