"Let books be your dining table, / And you shall be full of delights. / Let them be your
And you shall sleep restful nights" (St. Ephraim the Syrian).

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Nationalisms in Greece and Turkey

Anyone who knows anything about Eastern Christianity knows the role played by, and the problems of, ethno-nationalism. A welcome new book, in what seems to be a scholarly trend of re-evaluating the sunset of the Ottoman Empire, looks at the role of nationalism among Greek Orthodox Christians as well as Muslims: Benjamin C. Fortna et al, eds., State-Nationalisms in the Ottoman Empire, Greece and Turkey: Orthodox and Muslims, 1830-1945 (Routledge, 2012), 258pp.

About this book the publisher tells us:

Tracing the emergence of minorities and their institutions from the late nineteenth century to the eve of the Second World War, this book provides a comparative study of government policies and ideologies of two states towards minority populations living within their borders.
Making extensive use of new archival material, this volume transcends the tendency to compare the Greek-Orthodox in Turkey and the Muslims in Greece separately and, through a comparison of the policies of the host states and the operation of the political, religious and social institutions of minorities, demonstrates common patterns and discrepancies between the two countries that have previously received little attention.
A collaboration between Greek and Turkish scholars with broad ranging research interests, this book benefits from an international and balanced perspective, and will be an indispensable aid to students and scholars alike.
The publisher also gives us the contents:
Introduction: The Ottoman Empire and After Benjamin Fortna 1. Elites and the Formation of National Identity: The Case of the Greek Orthodox Millet, Mid-19th Century to 1922 Dimitris Kamouzis 2. Millet Legacies in a National Environment: Political Elites and Muslim Communities in Greece, 1830s-1923 Stefanos Katsikas 3. Nationalist Infiltrations in Ottoman Thrace, ca. 1870-1912: The Case of the Kaza of Gumuljina Paris Konortas 4. A Minority in a State of Flux: Greek Self-Administration and Educastion in Post-lausanne Istanbul, ca. 1923-1930 Dimitris Kamouzis 5. The Politics of Turkey Towards the Ecumenical Patriarchate: The Single-Party Era (1923-1945) Elcin Macar 6. A Minority in a State of Hostage: The Muslims of Greece, 1923-1941Stefanos Katsikas 7. The Ankara Agreement of 1930 and the Minorities: Reconciliation, Normalization or Instrumentalization? Samim Akgonul 8. “Tax Me to the End of my Life!”: Anatomy of an Anti-Minority Tax Legislation, 1942-43 Ayhan Aktar Conclusion

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