Interviewee ID: 990130
Parent's name: Tsedev
Ovog: Bulgat zaan
Year of Birth: 1950
Notes on education: büren dund
Work: retired / factory worker
Born in: [None Given] sum, Ulaanbaatar aimag
Lives in: Bayanzürh sum (or part of UB), Ulaanbaatar aimag
Mother's profession: herder
Father's profession: herder
Themes for this interview, suggested by the interview team, are:
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industrialization; work; foreign relations; new technologies; family;
Alternative keywords suggested by readers for this interview are: (Please click on a keyword to see more interviews, if any, on that topic)
woolen textile factory; worker; informal culture in factories; employment criteria; Party member; salary - incentives; family;
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To read a full interview with Oyuntsetseg please click on the Interview ID below.
Summary of Interview 081230A with Oyuntsetseg
Oyuntsetseg was born in 1950 in Ulaanbaatar. After completion of the tenth grade in 1968, she was employed as a worker at the wool textiles factory. Had been working at the conveyor belt (assembly line) and later worked as a store-keper for the factory. Since 1990, she worked as an accountant in the “Tavan Erdene” company and then retired.
I followed my brother who worked at the wool textile factory as an engineer and I went there to work. At that time there were few people who were jobless. People who had a stable family and a good upbringing were being employed. Our factory had, as an example, employed a person who had been in prison and after he did well and he got married later.
The wool textile factory had over 1000 workers. The factory made yarn from sheep wool, washed and dyed it, and produced a finished product. The young people who attended vocational schools and the experienced workers were taken on after one month of training. The engineers and the technicians took care of the workers, and the workers had a collective spirit. Our factory had been built with Russian assistance and the workers worked in two shifts. Many products like woolen blankets, textiles, and military coats were made and exported. The factory had executive, weaving, yarning and painting workshops.
The majority of the workers did only their work and they didn’t think much about being trained further through training courses. There were many people who stood in the forefront through their work achievements and they were made deputies (of the Great Hural) as a result. People who were never absent from work without any excuse, who had participated well in public activities and had always been present at the lectures and hearings, who had developed new products and put forward good proposals were selected and awarded. I was given a four room apartment from my factory. People had to wait request an apartment and then wait for one. There were cases when people who had worked for a long time, work achievements or who had been elected were given apartments. The salary was sufficient. The factory distributed firewood, vegetables, milk and dairy products to the workers, and the money was later deducted from their salary. The workers’ children attended kindergartens and nurseries from the age of one and a half years. The workers of the socialist period were on time, and they never missed subbotniks (Saturday 'voluntary' work). Every Saturday there were newspaper readings and every Thursday, lectures. The workers were sent to Russia for training and rest. Also, parties and meetings were organized. Meetings and gatherings were organized a lot. There was much fuss about participating the union cell’s “Lenin test’.
New Year, March 8th and other holidays were celebrated collectively and the workers were given awards incentives. Our factory had mostly female workers therefore we had patronage relations with the fire brigade of the kombinat. So we gathered and organized parties and celebrated the holidays together. I met my first spouse there. Also, we went as a group to the cinema and theatre.
Individuals privatized the industrial sites by the pink and blue coupons and the workers became jobless. The sites had been changed and the machinery and technique were cast away because they said they were outdated. The workers were scattered and disappeared. Only some of them work as attendants or guards, otherwise there’s no one doing a specific job.