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Islam, Morality and Public Education: Religious Elements of Ethics and Etiquette in the Uzbek School Curriculum Open Access

Influenced by Arabic and Persian traditions, the plural word Ādāb in the Uzbek language (sing. adab) as a social term connotes a discipline of character development in ethics and morals. As a literary term, adab means a concept of aesthetics that teaches morality. The prevalence of the concept in Uzbek society is evidenced by the fact that there is a school subject called Odobnoma: adab studies. These elementary-school classes aim to cultivate moral uprightness, social responsibility and virtue. On the surface, the subject seems to be secular, yet a closer analysis of the themes and topics of Odobnoma reveals indirect Islamic influence. This is partly because Central Asian cultures contain Islamic teachings, which have become a part of the national understanding of morality, ethics and etiquette. This article explores the influence of these teachings from the Uzbek perspective of “national character.”

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