For the 1950 Bollywood film see Dastan (1950 film) Dastan (داستان dâstân, Persian for “story”), is an ornate form of oral history from Central Asia, the most famous of which is Dede Korkut—which may have been created as early as the beginning of the 13th century. A dastan is generally centered on one individual who protects his tribe or his people from an outside invader or enemy, although only occasionally can this figure be traced back to an historical person. This main character sets an example of how one should act, and the dastan becomes a teaching tool—for example the Sufi master Ahmet Yesevi said “Let the scholars hear my wisdom, treating my words like a dastan”. As well as this wisdom each dastan is rich with cultural history of interest to scholars. During the Russian invasion and occupation of Central Asia, many new dastans were created to protest the Russian occupation. It is possible that they came into contact and influenced each other. According to Turkish historian Hasan Bülent Paksoy, the Bolsheviks tried to destroy these symbols of culture, e.g. by only publishing them in insufficiently large quantities and in a distorted form “in order to weaken the heroic impact”.