Uzbek language study in CEUS
Indiana University’s Central Eurasian Studies Department (CEUS) is the only department in the U.S. that offers four levels of Uzbek. Introductory and intermediate are taught both during the academic year and at the SWSEEL program over the summer. Advanced Uzbek courses are also available.
CEUS offers Uzbek to students elsewhere through distance learning courses. This year, the introductory and intermediate Uzbek courses are being taught to student at the University of Iowa, Michigan State University, and Ohio State University.
Uzbek language learning as part of the CEUS minor
Fulfill your foreign language requirement by taking two years of Uzbek! Two more courses in culture or history, and you can receive a minor in CEUS.
Why study Uzbek?
Located in the heart of Central Asia, Uzbekistan was a historic center of empires, education, and trade. Many cities in Uzbekistan were hubs on the ancient Silk Road, the famous trading route between China and the West.
Today, Uzbekistan is the second largest exporter of cotton after the U.S. and has rich natural resources: natural gas, oil, gold, copper, uranium, and others. Also, Uzbekistan is a strategically important country in Central Asia.
Uzbek is a Turkic language and the official language of Uzbekistan. It has about 35.3 million native speakers and belongs to the southeastern Turkic (or Karluk) family of Turkic languages, from which it gets its lexicon and grammar. Other influences stem from Persian, Arabic and Russian.
One aspect that distinguishes Uzbek from other Turkic languages is its rounding of the vowel /a/ to /ɒ/ or /ɔ/, a feature influenced by Persian.
Before the expansion of Russian and the Soviet Empires into Central Asia, Uzbek was written in an Arabic script. In 1940, Uzbek was switched to Cyrillic script due to Soviet policy. In the early nineties, the Uzbek government official reintroduced the Latin script, although the use of Cyrillic is still widespread.