Interviewee ID: 990291
Parent's name: Dondov
Year of Birth: 1945
Notes on education: history teacher
Work: retired, herder
Born in: Saihan sum, Bulgan aimag
Lives in: Saihan sum (or part of UB), Bulgan aimag
Mother's profession: herder
Father's profession: herder
Themes for this interview, suggested by the interview team, are:
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education / cultural production; work; herding / livestock; collectivization; new technologies;
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Summary of Interview 090739A with Namhai
An old man, a former horse-herder, teacher and mayor of Saihan sum of Bulgan aimag
Many relatives and children of Lamjav guai (see interview 090102; interviewee 990080) have given interviews in our project and one of them is D. Namhai. The interviews of the many family relatives of Lamjav guai is an interesting aspect of the 20th century Mongolian oral history study. IIt is very interesting to trace by one family’s developmental history the oral Mongolian history of the socialist period, its end, and the democratic period.
Namhai was born in 1945 in Saihan sum of Bulgan aimag. Having finished elementary and secondary school he tended the collective's horses for eight years. Later, in 1980-1984, he graduated from the history and geography faculty of the State Teacher’s Institute. He has worked as a head master, and a history and geography teacher of the eight and ten-year secondary schools and from 1996 to 2000 he worked as a sum mayor for four years and then retired. His wife was a herder and from 1976 she has studied in the teacher’s school in Arhangai and also studied at the State Teacher’s Institute. Having graduated the tenth grade in 1964, Namhai was appointed to the military general school. At that time he didn’t like military service and his parents were old people therefore he went to the countryside to assist his parents. In the countryside he tended livestock for ten years and he used to be a collective horse herder. He lived a decent life then but the collective's dargas used to maltreat him. It seemed to him at that time that the people who had graduated from the higher education institutions lived well and the ordinary, harmless working person had trouble getting along and coping with the dargas. It seemed a person who was a little stubborn was always mistreated. Therefore he made up his mind to get educated and first he had his wife graduate school, and in 1980 he entered school and he talked in detail about his student life.
He also talked about what he had heard and what he knew about the communes in the 1930s. The collectivization was carried out in 1959, and he recalled how the people were made to join the collectives. There was much oppression when they joined the collectives. The collective members ‘endured their fates’, and because of this he hated the collectives. The establishment of the collective was a violation of people’s property, and it was the most vulgar and the biggest deviation. The people were oppressed by the official tax and the number of livestock of the ‘ails’ didn't increase.
The work of disbanding the collectives, which supported the democratic revolution of 1990, was very consistently supported in Mongolia, and the very first meeting on disbanding the collectives was held on March 27, 1991, in Saihan sum center. Before privatization, the supreme council of the collective's union gave instructions to transfer the collective livestock to a so-called contracted lease. He didn’t support the contracted lease considering it a waste of time. He argued about the contracted lease, saying that the collective dargas would misappropriate livestock and the herders and countryside people would become poor and the most of them would become beggars. Therefore we shouldn’t let it happen. The cooperatives must be disbanded. Thus he argued. He thought that the collective's assets should be divided among the people who had collectivized their livestock and those who worked at the time in the collective.