Interviewee ID: 990525
Parent's name: Sereenen
Year of Birth: 1935
Notes on education:
Born in: Yaruu sum, Zavhan aimag
Lives in: Uliastai sum (or part of UB), Zavhan aimag
Mother's profession: herder
Father's profession: herder
Themes for this interview, suggested by the interview team, are:
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work; collectivization; herding / livestock; cultural campaigns; privatization;
Alternative keywords suggested by readers for this interview are: (Please click on a keyword to see more interviews, if any, on that topic)
socialism; darga; collectivisation; cultural campaigns; democracy; privatization;
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To read a full interview with Lhagvajav please click on the Interview ID below.
Summary of Interview 100528A with Lhagvajav
Lhagvajav went to school at the age of eleven, and finished four classes. After elementary school he worked for his father who was a wealthy livestock owner. At sixteen he was put in charge of a horse relay station where he worked for two years. Then Lhagvajav became the darga of a bag. Afterwards he worked as the darga of a brigade in a collective farm for eighteen years. After finishing a two-year course at the Party Institute in Ulaanbaatar he worked as the director of a supply station and then as an aid to a collective farm darga until his retirement.
Lhagvajav discusses a wide range of topics: what it was like being in charge of a brigade, what subjects he studied at the Party Institute, about dargas in the socialist period, how he participated in the collectivisation, about the working of collective farms, how the collectivisation was carried out, about the cultural campaign, about what he thinks of democracy, and his experience of the privatisation. His story about how herders were forced to collectivize is interesting. In the beginning it was carried out rather chaotically: herders were imposed high taxes on keeping private livestock, as a result many people hid their cattle. In the end all were compelled to give up their livestock to the state, only keeping an allowed amount for private use. In the socialist period people were obedient. Disobedience was discouraged by various methods and means: people were reprimanded publically, denounced, etc. In Lhagvajav’s view, Mongolians are accustomed to being controlled and given orders.
He himself supports democracy, for people were made livestock owners and religion became open. Apart from two sacks of Chinese flour, he says he gained nothing from the privatisation.