A government-sponsored project to publish translations of pre-1949 Xinjiang-related texts during 2012-2020 has been launched with the February 27th announcement (首批) that the first sixty volumes will soon be available in print (albeit in small numbers and high-end editions) and in digital format.
Dubbed the “Xinjiang Archives” (新疆文库), it will consist of originals and translations in Chinese, Uyghur, Kazakh, Mongol, Kyrgyz and Xibe. Targeted domains include works of philosophy, sociology, history and geography, literature and technology.
As usual with wordy PR announcements from China’s state-run organs, it’s not clear just how much of this is genuinely “new” or easily accessible to the public.
The Xinjiang Archive web site (www.xjwenku.com) lists data about most of the 88 original documents that will appear in the new collection (出版书目), but most carry rather old publication dates. It may be that this new collection features updated, edited versions of originals that had gone out of print, so making them available in digital format would be much appreciated by scholars worldwide.
And it is implied—but not stated—that some of these works will be translated into more than one of the six languages. This would help overcome the unfortunate situation of a Uyghur scholar, for instance, who might know only Chinese and Uyghur, and therefore cannot read important as-yet-untranslated Kazakh works. Such difficulties are not to be scoffed at; in a recent post (Still Waiting) I noted a Uyghur academic who complained that Nobel Laureate Mo Yan’s works have not yet appeared in Uyghur. . .
Here is a very brief list of publications noted on the site (though not currently downloadable), some also including CD/DVDs: