War rug

This war rug depicts the reality of conflict-ridden Afghanistan. Over the past 30 years, weaponry replaced traditional Afghan floral designs. Look at the images of warfare: hand grenades, tanks, fighter jets, missiles and helicopters. Afghans weave such rugs during times of conflict but the individuals who make them are unknown, their stories forever hidden.

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What is the tone of this rug and does it condemn war or glorify weaponry?

responded: Jul 27, 2012

Posted by VIC224Y - Intro to Material Culture Uoft

Recommend this Response
War rugs, considered to be a new genre, started to appear in 1978 just before the Soviet invasion in 1979. Common war rug depictions between 1978 and 2001, before the US invasion, were of the weapons used in the war, commemoration of the Soviet exodus in 1989, and glorifications of the Kalashnikovs, a type of gun used by the mujahedeen against the Soviets. Upon studying this war rug through comparisons with others, I found that the war rug had very common images, but that the layout of them was unique and resembled a hybrid between two other categories of war rugs. I have given a reading for the rug that I think makes the most sense and gives an interesting idea of the feelings towards the war, but what has been the most revealing part of this analysis may be the interaction of globalisation on the rug industry, and what that says about globalisation impact on cultures generally.

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