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Ksenia Kardonova, Autobiography



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Terbish, Baasanjav 


Ksenia Kardonova talks about her parents, her childhood, Siberian exile, an life in Kalmykia. I was born in Volgograd oblast. My parents lived there along with some other Kalmyks. When the war broke out, my family returned home, to live with the rest of the Kalmyks. In my family we had 5 children and all members of my clan lived next to each other. I was little and vaguely remember this time. When all men were taken to the war front, we all went to work. Kalmyks are such a people that they compose songs about all important events. In 1943 we were all deported. It was early in the morning. Two soldiers came and I did not understand what kind of people they were. It was hard to live in Siberia, but when the decree on rehabilitation came out, we almost all returned home. Few people stayed in Siberia. When we returned there was nowhere to live in Kalmykia and so we put all the strength together to build houses and live in our homeland. Later my family built a house and we moved to Elista. I am retired now, I am a pensioner. I help my grandchildren and relatives. I also plant flowers. This is how I live now. I always pray that young people live better than my generation. As for the rest, if there is no war it is good.



Autobiography, childhood, exile, Siberia

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Kalmyk Cultural Heritage Documentation Project, University of Cambridge

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Sponsored by Arcadia Fund, a charitable fund of Lisbet Rausing and Peter Baldwin