ΓΛΩΣΣΑ ΠΟΛΙΤΙΚΗ ΠΟΜΑΚΙΚΑ ΤΡΑΓΟΥΔΙΑ ΜΕΙΟΝΟΤΙΚΗ ΕΚΠΑΙΔΕΥΣΗ ΦΩΤΟΓΡΑΦΙΕΣ ΙΣΤΟΡΙΑ ΠΟΜΑΚΩΝ ΠΟΜΑΚΙΚΟ ΔΕΛΤΙΟ ΕΙΔΗΣΕΩΝ ΠΟΜΑΚΟΧΩΡΙΑ ΞΑΝΘΗΣ ΒΙΝΤΕΟ ΔΗΜΟΣΙΑ ΕΚΠΑΙΔΕΥΣΗ ΑΡΘΡΑ ΣΤΟΝ ΤΥΠΟ ΓΛΑΥΚΗ ΒΙΒΛΙΟΓΡΑΦΙΑ ΠΟΜΑΚΙΚΑ ΠΑΡΑΜΥΘΙΑ ΣΜΙΝΘΗ ΠΟΛΙΤΙΣΤΙΚΟΣ ΣΥΛΛΟΓΟΣ ΠΟΜΑΚΩΝ ΕΚΔΗΛΩΣΕΙΣ ΘΡΑΚΗ ΔΗΜΑΡΙΟ ΠΟΙΗΣΗ ΑΡΧΙΤΕΚΤΟΝΙΚΗ ΜΕΙΟΝΟΤΗΤΑ ΜΥΚΗ ΜΑΘΗΜΑΤΑ ΠΟΜΑΚΙΚΗΣ ΓΙΟΡΤΕΣ ΕΧΙΝΟΣ ΕΚΠΑΙΔΕΥΤΙΚΟ ΥΛΙΚΟ ΕΚΛΟΓΕΣ ΙΣΤΟΡΙΑ ΛΑΟΓΡΑΦΙΑ ΩΡΑΙΟΝ ΚΙΜΜΕΡΙΑ ΜΑΝΤΑΙΝΑ ΕΞΙΣΛΑΜΙΣΜΟΣ ΠΟΜΑΚΩΝ ΠΡΟΞΕΝΕΙΟ ΠΡΟΣΗΛΙΟ ΠΕΤΡΙΝΑ ΓΕΦΥΡΙΑ ΠΟΜΑΚΟΙ ΘΕΡΜΕΣ ΜΕΤΑΦΡΑΣΕΙΣ ΤΑΥΤΟΤΗΤΑ ΣΑΤΡΕΣ ΤΕΜΕΝΗ ΧΑΡΤΕΣ ΚΟΤΥΛΗ ΟΙΚΟΝΟΜΙΑ ΚΟΜΟΤΗΝΗ ΣΥΝΕΔΡΙΑ ΤΟΠΩΝΥΜΙΑ ΦΥΣΗ ΑΣΚΥΡΑ ΚΕΝΤΑΥΡΟΣ ΜΟΥΦΤΕΙΑ ΠΑΡΟΙΜΙΕΣ ΠΑΧΝΗ ΛΙΒΑΔΙ ΑΡΧΑΙΟΛΟΓΙΑ ΚΑΤΑΓΩΓΗ ΜΑΓΕΙΡΙΚΗ ΣΥΝΕΝΤΕΥΞΕΙΣ ΑΛΜΑ ΒΟΥΛΓΑΡΙΚΗ ΡΟΔΟΠΗ ΘΡΗΣΚΕΙΑ ΚΑΛΟΤΥΧΟ ΝΕΡΟΜΥΛΟΙ ΓΟΡΓΟΝΑ ΚΕΧΡΟΣ ΛΕΞΙΚΟΓΡΑΦΙΑ ΟΙΚΟΛΟΓΙΑ ΠΑΝΕΛΛΗΝΙΟΣ ΣΥΛΛΟΓΟΣ ΠΟΜΑΚΩΝ ΑΙΜΟΝΙΟ ΑΝΘΡΩΠΙΝΑ ΔΙΚΑΙΩΜΑΤΑ ΑΡΘΡΑ ΕΘΙΜΑ ΙΕΡΟΔΙΔΑΣΚΑΛΟΙ ΙΣΛΑΜ ΚΑΘΗΜΕΡΙΝΗ ΖΩΗ ΚΟΤΙΝΟ ΚΥΚΝΟΣ ΜΕΔΟΥΣΑ ΜΗΤΡΙΚΗ ΓΛΩΣΣΑ ΣΥΝΘΗΚΗ ΛΩΖΑΝΝΗΣ ΤΟΥΡΚΙΑ MYKH ΑΝΑΠΤΥΞΗ ΔΗΜΟΓΡΑΦΙΑ ΕΘΝΟΛΟΓΙΑ ΕΙΔΗΣΕΙΣ ΕΚΚΛΗΣΙΕΣ ΕΝΔΥΜΑΣΙΑ ΕΡΑΝΟΣ ΘΕΟΤΟΚΟΣ ΚΑΡΔΑΜΟΣ ΚΕΝΤΡΟ ΠΟΜΑΚΙΚΩΝ ΕΡΕΥΝΩΝ ΚΟΤΑΝΗ ΛΙΒΑΣ ΜΕΛΙΒΟΙΑ ΜΟΥΣΙΚΗ ΜΠΕΚΤΑΣΙΣΜΟΣ ΟΔΟΙΠΟΡΙΚΟ ΟΝΟΜΑΤΑ ΠΑΡΑΔΟΣΙΑΚΟΙ ΧΟΡΟΙ ΠΟΡΤΑ ΡΕΥΜΑ ΡΟΜΑ ΡΟΥΣΣΑ ΣΥΛΛΟΓΟΣ ΠΟΜΑΚΩΝ ΓΛΑΥΚΗΣ ΣΥΝΤΑΓΕΣ ΤΟΥΡΙΣΜΟΣ ΧΛΟΗ ΑΙΩΡΑ ΑΚΡΑΙΟΣ ΑΛΙΚΟΧΩΡΙ ΑΝΕΚΔΟΤΑ ΒΑΚΟΥΦΙΑ ΒΑΣΙΛΙΚΑ ΓΕΩΡΓΙΑ ΓΙΑΛΙΣΤΕΡΟ ΔΡΑΣΤΗΡΙΟΤΗΤΕΣ ΕΚΔΡΟΜΕΣ ΕΚΚΛΗΣΙΑΣΜΟΙ ΕΠΙΣΚΕΨΕΙΣ ΖΑΓΑΛΙΣΑ ΖΑΦΕΙΡΙΟ ΖΟΥΜΠΟΥΛΙ ΖΩΓΡΑΦΙΚΗ ΘΕΑΤΡΟ ΚΑΠΝΟΚΑΛΛΙΕΡΓΕΙΑ ΚΕΤΙΚΙΟ ΚΙΔΑΡΙΣ ΚΙΡΡΑ ΚΟΥΖΙΝΑ ΚΤΗΝΟΤΡΟΦΙΑ ΛΟΓΟΤΕΧΝΙΑ ΜΕΓΑΛΟΧΩΡΙ ΜΕΤΑΝΑΣΤΕΥΣΗ ΜΥΡΤΙΣΚΗ ΝΗΠΙΑΓΩΓΕΙΑ ΝΤΟΚΙΜΑΝΤΕΡ ΟΡΓΑΝΗ ΠΕΛΕΚΗΤΟ ΠΛΑΓΙΑ ΠΡΙΟΝΙ ΠΡΟΓΡΑΜΜΑΤΙΣΜΟΣ ΠΡΟΣΕΥΧΕΣ Πάχνη ΡΥΜΗ ΣΕΛΕΡΟ ΣΙΔΗΡΟΧΩΡΙ ΣΙΡΟΚΟ ΣΜΙΓΑΔΑ ΣΟΥΝΙΟ ΣΩΣΤΗΣ ΤΑΞΙΔΙΑ ΤΕΜΕΝΟΣ ΥΔΡΟΧΩΡΙ ΥΠΟΥΡΓΕΙΟ ΕΞΩΤΕΡΙΚΩΝ ΥΦΑΝΤΟΥΡΓΙΑ ΧΡΥΣΟ

Τετάρτη, 11 Αυγούστου 2010

Islamic fanaticism and ethnic delimitation.

Islamic fanaticism and ethnic delimitation.
The case of the Pomaks of Thrace.

Nikolaos T. Kokkas



ABSTRACT
The development of fundamentalist Islamic movements in recent years has been interpreted with social and economic criteria or through the view that the religious values of Islam are incompatible with the western cultural constructions of democracy, modernity and globalization. In the case of the Slavic-speaking Muslims of Thrace the limits of their ethnic group are not defined only by locality but also by the sense of belonging. This delimitation is symbolic, as a community becomes a “deposit of symbols”, a mechanism of aggregation of forms of behaviour. In recent years, in the name of Islam, a lack of tolerance has been exhibited along with an absolute rejection of the “infidels”, whereas there is simultaneously a systematic and organized appropriation of religiousness by Turkish nationalism. This development has formed new data in the region of South-eastern Balkans and creates the conditions for potential future conflict. Recognizing the diversity, multiformity and multilingualism of the cross-border communities of Thrace, we can realize that their identity is the product of multiple inbreeding and remains in a constantly changing condition of vagueness.

KEY WORDS: religion, Islam, fanaticism, fundamentalism, Pomaks, Thrace, minority, borders, boundaries


In the following paper we shall examine the politicization of the religious identity of the Pomaks of Western Thrace in the context of the general attitudes expressed during the last decade in the Balkan countries by Islamic populations. Studying the relationship between religious fanaticism and ethnic delimitation we take it for granted that the cultural features are closely related with the composition of boundaries. We shall try to approach the issue of the relationship between religion and nationalism without reproducing the stereotypes about the orient, as they were cultivated by western colonialist orientalism.
Boundaries function as power symbols, as indicators that inscribe the territorial borders of states. The way in which the state power deals with boundaries is a central subject in any analysis of the role and the concept of boundaries. The boundary is what shows the beginning and the end of the community, which is determined by the needs for social interaction and encapsulates its identity. Cohen (1985:12) stresses the significance that people themselves give to a boundary, as that exists because some communities act in such a way towards others, from which they want to be distinguished. The boundaries of a community are not determined by locality so much as they are determined by the sense of belonging. At the level of a village, the settlement delimitates the space and distinguishes it from other settlements. However, this delimitation is also symbolic. In this way the community becomes “repository of symbols”, a mechanism of congregation of forms of behaviour, to use Cohen’s (1985:19-20) wording.
We shall deal below more specifically with the subject of the symbolic boundaries of the religiousness of the Pomak Muslims, especially in its extreme expression, that of fundamentalism.
By the term fundamentalism (1) we define the militant religious conservatism, the one-dimensional and selective vindication of a religious tradition. Fundamentalism is different from the essence of faith and misappropriates goals and techniques of political movements, rejecting the Islamic reformations which began in the 19th century. Especially through preaching, the mass media and religious education, religious fanaticism cultivates the hatred of the “other”: the infidel, the heterodox, the foreigner, the different. In order to justify hatred, it often refers to the past or it uses historical memory in its own way. Using Eric Hobsbawm (2) words, “if the past does not meet the needs of the present, another one can always be invented”.
In the last years, fundamentalism and globalisation have been complementing each other. As Α.Giddens (3) has stressed “the rise of fundamentalism is the answer to the influences of globalization … Fundamentalism is the child of globalization, to which it reacts but also uses it”. Since the middle of the 1970s the political Islam rises dynamically as a dynamic negation of western modernity.
We ought to notice that fundamentalism does not belong exclusively to the Islamic religion, as we often see a rise of Christian fundamentalism in the USA, Hebrew fundamentalism in Israel, Hindu fundamentalism in India etc.
Religion is a delimited social collective identity, the members of which inevitably develop specific relationships with other respective collective identities in the geopolitical space. This is even more so in the case of religious devotees, for which these relations become tense and problematic, as wrath is spread among religious groups, directed towards political activism.
Through religion the community forms a collective attitude. Sectors such as family relations, maturation of personality, rural practices are influenced drastically by the role of rites of initiation and atonement, from spirit worship, sorcery, connection with the supernatural. From an anthropological point of view, the importance of religion lies in its ability to be useful for a person or a group as a source of general but distinct concepts concerning the world, the self and the relations between them as well as a source of consolidated attitudes. The religious notions expand further from their special metaphysical context in order to provide a framework of general ideas, with which a significant form can be given to a wide range of experiences (mental, emotional, moral).

Islam and the others

Let us now focus on Islam, a religion of over a billion people that has a long history of conquest and conversion. The seed of intolerance is so evident in the cases when Islam comes to power, for example in Iran or in Afghanistan (Karabelias 001:109). The new rise of Islamic fundamentalism movements dates back to the end of the 1970s, whereas there was a remarkable elevation at the end of the 1980s and later, especially in countries of former Soviet republics. In these republics, the long oppression of religious feelings led to an explosion to the interest in religion. The modern movements of Islamic fundamentalism move towards two different directions: on the one hand they keep up with nationalist trends of the place of their origin and on the other hand they adopt supra-national positions, following an anti-west attitude (Varvitsiotis 2008:51) (4) .
However, in what extent could we claim that the lack of tolerance is based on the root of Islamic theology? According to Islamic teachings, all people included in the faithful Muslims (mumin) follow the right way, whereas the others are considered to be infidels, pagans (kafir). This dichotomy between the faithful and the infidels does not allow of any contestation, as it is believed that the faithful must fight for the imposition of the world of faith (Dar al Islam) to the world of the infidels (Dar al Harb). The final victory of the infidels will be the result of jihad, the holy war, which is a capital duty of Muslims. The adherents of radical Islam evoke Kuran extracts to support their struggle against the infidels:
“You should fight for the sake of ALLAH all those who are fighting you, but do not exceed the limits, because ALLAH does not love transgressors. Kill them wherever you find them and drive them away from where they have driven you away … This is the punishment of the infidels. Fight them till they do not persecute you to idolatry so that the faith to ALLAH may overrule. But if the stop their action, then do not do war but only against the wrong ones” (5)
“Fight against them (killing them) until there is no more temptation and till the religion of the ALLAH is the only one”(6)
“Fight against those who do not believe in ALLAH … till they give the homage tax (jiya) with voluntary subjugation, and they feel themselves humiliated” (7) .
“We shall make the infidels try horrible tortures and we shall retaliate whatever they have done in the worst way” (8) .

However, despite these, in the Kuran there are also extracts that emphasize tolerance of the different faith:
“In religion there is no compulsion” (9)
“Do not curse those who invoke others instead of ALLAH, for fear that in their ignorance they may curse ALLAH … Let the hearts of those who do not believe in future life, be fixed, be misled with these words. And let them accept whatever evil they want”(10) .

In this way, the various interpretations that the Kuranic extracts allow of make it possible for the supporters of extreme fundamentalism to exploit them in their own way.

The stereotypes of orientalism and the rise of the political Islam

The detachment of Islamism from the family of European states and the view of Islam as inseparably connected with backwardness has been a steady stereotype of many writers for many centuries. In the English texts of the 16th century the example of the Turks (torture against Christians, punishments, blackmail, arbitrary actions) is used as a reason to criticize the Islam (11) . Two centuries later, the reactions of the west towards Islam are characterised by a simplified orientalistic way of thinking. As Edward Said (2002:70) remarks, that was a strongly polarized conception dividing the globe into two unequal parts, from which the “different” is called East, whereas “our world” is called West. In this way, in the 18th century, a cultural and religious dichotomy of east and west arises, which is, in the eyes of western travellers (12) , equal to the fight between good and evil. It goes without saying that many of the opinions of travellers are influenced by the general current of orientalism, which projected a beautified view of the East. Orientalism started from the terminus a quo of the superiority of the west and ended up with the comparison with the lower culture of the east. Those criticizing orientalism have stressed that this approach was nothing but a rationalization and legalization of colonialism, ending up to the reproduction of stereotypes that hinder the acceptance of the otherness of different cultures (Said 1996).
The development of fundamentalist Islamic movements in the last years has been interpreted with financial and social criteria or through the view that the religious values of Islam are incompatible with the western cultural constructions of democracy, modernity and globalisation. According to Bougarel (1989) we may distinguish three different strategies in the politicization of the Islamic identity in the Balkan countries during the last decade: 1) the attempt to incorporate it into a larger Islamic group with a statutory recognition (e.g. the identification of some Roma with the Turks), 2) incorporation into the greater population of the country (e.g. using the term “Greek Muslims” for the Pomaks of Greece and the term “Bulgarian Mohammedans” for the Pomak in Bulgaria), 3) the attempt to formulate a distinct identity, beyond any state collectivity, with references to the pre-Ottoman past (e.g. some Pomaks say: “we were here before Turkey”).
After the 1990s the Muslim populations in the Balkans appear as being politically independent, expressing specific political claims and reinforcing nationalist tendencies (Bougarel 1999). The cases of Bosnia-Erzegovina (1992/95) and Kosovo (1998) are examples of how the procedures of the rise of a political Islam are associated with the formation of the relationship between the Islamic religion and national identity. This does not mean that those opinions are rooted in religious causes. On the contrary, they are political opinions, in which religious symbols are utilized and in which leading members of the Islamic world play an active role. Studying the Balkan Islam in general, it is necessary to emphasize the continuous transformations taking place as well as the multiversity that we see from one country to another. However, it appears that there are some common elements, as the ones seen in the creation of Islamic parties (13) after 1989. The creation of Islamic political parties, which asked for the exclusiveness of the vote from Muslim voters, was followed by the edition of newspapers, creation of chauvinist web sites, establishment of associations and unions as well as radio and television stations.

Islamic fanaticism in today’s Thrace

We may say that in the Pomaks religious fanaticism dates back to the years of their islamization (14) . Nevertheless, in the last years, in the name of fundamentalist Islam, lack of tolerance is manifested along with absolute rejection of the “infidels”, the “giaurs”, whereas there is a systematic and organized (15) use of religiousness. The fact that the Muslim religion is used in Thrace nowadays as an instrument for the accommodation of nationalistic goals becomes particularly evident in the cases of threats and violence against those who speak for a distinctive identity for the Roma (16) or the Pomaks.
The construction of new interpretations of history and tradition is also set in the service of chauvinism. A typical example is the decline or distortion of the oral tradition is the story of Girl’s Stone (Mómski Kámen) (17) . A story which is widely spread in the Pomaks of Rhodope, an essential part of their ethnic memory, that differentiated them from the Turks, has been distorted in the last years, placing the Bulgarians in the place of the Turks, or has declined, subtracting every ethnic connotation and reducing the girls’ suicide to a love story (“the girls committed suicide because they were not allowed to get married to the ones they loved”).
In the context of the political use of the Islamic religion is the attempt for the building in Thrace and especially in the Pomak villages of new, large-size mosques (18) , which become a symbolic demarcation of space, acting as landmarks. The erection of many mosques in the last years, funded by unknown sources or by foreign sources, is a common sight in many Balkan countries.
At the level of electronic propaganda it has been noted (19) that in the last years more and more minority websites are created on the internet, promoting Kemalist ideology in Thrace. The public statements of minority politicians are equally important as they are accompanied by respective fiery speeches of Turkish politicians who often tour around Thrace. An example is the attempt of the Turkish Foreign Minister Ali Babacan, who set a Turkish minority issue, trying to associate the minority issue with the development of Greek-Turkish relations (20) . The tours of this kind (21) seem to be programmed and to serve specific goals.
The World Congresses organized in the last years by Western-Thrace Muslims are indicative of the overall political objectives. In these congresses extreme chauvinist claims are often presented. The 5th World Congress of the Turks of Western Thrace was organized in Istanbul on 15-17/9/2006. In the decisions taken by the congress committees it is proposed, among other things, “to establish a separate championship of the western society in Western Thrace”, to establish centres of Turkish culture in Xanthi, Komotini, Alexandroupoli, to form again the structure of the minority party “Friendship-Equality-Peace”, to have specialised staff discover the intelligent children of the minority, to increase the percentage of the minority schools students of Western Thrace who are introduced into Turkish universities, to increase the lobbying actions, to create a news agency and publish a daily Turkish-speaking newspaper in Western Thrace, to close down the Special Pedagogic Academy of Thessaloniki, to establish a centre of economic research in Komotini, to establish an institution for the funding of Western Thracian Turks and many others in the sector of economy, legislation, education, culture and self-administration.
The attempt to utilize the Islamic faith for the benefit of pro-Kemalist ideology (22) becomes particularly noticeable in the places of worship and during Islamic festivals (23) . The revival of festivals acquires a political dimension, along with the attempt to strengthen the religious sentiment of the Muslims of Thrace by certain groups that identify Islam with the Turkish language, which is the language of preaching within the mosques of Thrace. In this context, in the last years it is common to see visits of representatives of the Turkish Consulate of Komotini as well as other Muslims, who speak Turkish and who present themselves as “officials”. It is also common to observe welcoming banners being placed, which are written in the Turkish language (24) . However, for the Pomaks themselves the rites of the festivals are not merely regarded as religious practices; they also reflect a lot of forms of symbolic behaviour and they express a huge range of cultural standards, being a unique opportunity for linguistic communication in their mother tongue with the other members of their ethnic group. In this way, despite the attempts for appropriation, the holy rites of the festivals, bequeathed to the one generation from the other, still fascinate the Pomaks, since they associate them both with good health and the aversion of the evil, as well as the embodiment into the cultural system of the Pomak community.

Religion and politics

The Pomaks themselves usually refuse to enter the process of their final self-determination. Facing the attempts of their identification they usually answer reactively or by silence. As Markou (2006:65) notes, the silence of the Pomaks was the refusal of the polarization created by the dominant forms of nationalism in Thrace, which had resulted to the abolitition of the Pomak identity. Nevertheless, in recent years, independent Pomak citizens started expressing their opposition to the cultivation of religious intolerance. A typical example is the letter (25) sent by a Pomak concerning the elections for the pseudo-mufti, that took place in the mosques on 31/12/2006. The new pseudo-mufti Mr Ahmet Mete, after his election, started an intense anti-Pomak action and frequent contacts with supreme members of the Turkish government (26) .
In the last years Islamic fanaticism has been expressed in Turkish-speaking newspapers which declare the defence of the rights of the “Turkish” (as they call it) minority in Western Thrace. A typical example is the establishment of the Cultural Association of the Pomaks of Xanthi Prefecture (27) , which was followed by intense outbursts of anti-Pomakism in the name of Islam and Turkism (28) . The self-definition “Pomak Muslim” was given by the Cultural Association of the Pomaks of Xanthi Prefecture as an answer (29) to offensive articles of the local Turkish-speaking newspapers against the association (30) . Cengiz Omer wrote on that in the Turkish-speaking newspaper Millet (31) , which is published in Xanthi:
“If they, as individuals, are fighting for their own dignity, we are fighting for the dignity and the honour of a nation. That is, we are fighting for the honour of all the Turks of Western Thrace … Let them continue to challenge the patience of our nation and we will see … But they should know that even patience has its limits. If they continue to offend the identity of our nation, they will undergo the consequences”.

The same newspaper, addressing all those who are trying to show the peculiarity of the Pomak identity, invokes the Islamic faith in order to delimitate the group of the faithful Muslims from that of the Orthodox Christians:
“You are trying to confuse the minds of our religious people by saying to them that “Allah will not ask us if we are Turks or not, but if we are Muslims”. Well, I am asking you: Is it allowed in Islam to cooperate with the Orthodox Christians – the most atrocious enemies in the history of your coreligionist brothers – to betray your Muslim brothers and to sell movements against them? Aren’t you going to account to Allah?” (32)

The references to the “nation” as an element that unifies all the Muslims sometimes become threats for the breaking out of agitations:
“If you depend on the dark powers that are behind you, we depend on the dauntless will of the 150,000 (33) Turks of Western Thrace. Put that well in your minds. Don’t throw oil on the flames with these campaigns of slander. Don’t make the patience of this nation overflow. If things get out of control and this nation gets out to the streets, you will not be able to justify yourselves for these … You have not understood the militant power of this nation. This nation has proved in the past that for Muslism and for Turkism they are ready to sacrifice everything, and every time they are ready to prove that again. If you trust that you can bear the results, you may try” (34) .

In the expressions of fanatical speech one of the worst curses concerning the Christian population is the derogatory word kafîrin (35) (infidel). It is worth mentioning the phrase that somebody from Ehinos village used for a Pomak from Myki who said that he is a Pomak, not a Turk. He asked him: “Beki ti si kafîrin?” (Are you an infidel?). At a political level, the use of the word kafîrin reflects the steady choice of the Turkish policy on Thrace, which always was the objective to present the minority as a section that is completely cut off from the Christians (Dodos 1994:35).
The political use of religion becomes more obvious during the period of elections. The election behaviour of the Muslims in Thrace in the last years has passed from many phases, reaching – successfully – the attempt to direct the minority vote to one way(36) . As concerns the relationship of the Greek foreign policy with the policy of Turkey it is worth mentioning the interpellation of (37) of PASOK (Socialist Party) (38) in the Greek Parliament on 31/5/2007, in which the following are mentioned, among other things, on Turkey:
“They intend to interfere in Thrace, not in order to support the Greek policy of isonomy and equality before the law, but to undermine it, aiming at the increase of the isolation of the Muslim community and their delimitation around the Consulate. Turkish officials visit the area, preaching discrimination and showing off power. The cultural genocide of different ethnic groups of the minority is promoted with the external imposition of Turkish cultural models, which bear no relationship to the Muslim culture of Thrace. For the first time they publish new passports for the Turkish citizens, residents of Turkey originated from Thrace, in which the cities of Thrace are mentioned only with Turkish names. The Turkish press slanders, threatens and creates an atmosphere of hatred against the non-Turkish Muslims, with the pretext of the establishment of a Cultural Association of the Pomaks. The Turkish Agrarian Bank wants to create a branch in Komotini, obviously aiming at the economic and therefore political control of Muslim farmers”.

To this interpellation of the 33 representatives of PASOK the Counselling Committee of the Muslims of Thrace rapidly answered(39) , marking, among other things, the position of Turkey as a guarantee country which is legitimized to be interested in the rights of the minority, adding that “our minority, besides the religious culture that comes from Islam, also has the Turkish ethnic culture”. The aphoristic total characterization of the Muslim minority as Turkish functions as a collective self-exclusion and as rejection of the religiously other (Christian-Greek). At the same time, the deletion of the Pomak identity seems to have a selective objective, carefully designed so that the specific components of the Pomak collective identity may cease functioning as internal boundaries within the Muslim minority.


Procedures for the delimitation of the ethnic identity of the Pomaks

In the area of Thrace the presence of Islam has already had a history of seven centuries, which have been marked with wars, liberating movements as well as impressive mutual influences. The existing ethnic groups in Western Thrace, with their own cultural and linguistic system of reference each, have formed specific ways of communication among them, defining – in a more or less definite way – the limits with which they are distinguished. In the case of the Slavic-speaking Muslims the boundaries of their ethnic group are not defined merely by locality but also by the sense of belonging. This delimitation is symbolic, as the community becomes a “repository of symbols, a mechanism of congregation of forms of behaviour”. Within a mass of rapid economic and social changes, the Pomaks have proved to be particularly flexible in the way that they handle the issue of their collective identity.
As far as the ethnic identification of the Pomaks is concerned, Domna Michail (40) adopts the distinction of two types: private identification and public identification. The private self-determination is based on the perception of individuals about themselves, as that is associated with the group to which they belong. The public identification corresponds to the identity used by persons in their interaction with the others. Michail continues saying that in the Pomaks of Thrace she noticed that the public identity is multiple, depending on the person with which they communicate. She gives the example of the Pomak emigrants in Germany: when they communicate with Germans they present themselves as Greek-European and when they communicate with Greeks or Turks they present themselves as Greek-Pomaks or Turks respectively. The changeover from one identity to another is an action the Pomaks are aware of, whereas they also consider it to be blameable (41) .
Danova (2001), adopting the terminology of Horowitz, supports that in the case of the Pomak identity there have been procedures of fusion, incorporation, division and multiplication of their identities. She also regards the whole of the Pomak history as a continuous experimentation with different models of identities. The existence of the Pomaks itself starts from the 16th to the 18th century with the division of a unified ethnic group into two parts: those who remained Christians and those who turned to Islam. Simultaneously, the procedure of cultural fusion of various groups into a new and larger group had already begun. According to the interpretative model of Horowitz the procedures of division and fusion are usually followed by the multiplication of identities, instead of a mere transition from one identity to the other. This can be an explanation of the fluidity of the Pomak identity. This fluidity is closely related with the change of the boundaries of the group. As Frederik Barth (1969) notes, “it is the ethnic boundary that determines a group, not the cultural material that it embodies”. According to this viewpoint, the existence of an ethnic group is associated with the preservation of a boundary. In the case of the Pomaks, their inability to determine clearly defined boundaries, which distinguish them from other ethnic groups, may explain their adoption of multiple or uncertain identities.


The future as ambiguity and threat

It has been noted (Varvitsiotes 2008:15) that in the future it is likely that the most violent and hostile to the West forms of Islamic revival may prevail. These forms are a double threat for the western world: on the one hand they turn against it and threaten to destabilize the internal security of western societies and on the other hand they put to test the resilience of democratic institutions in general.
In 2006 the article of H.Yannaras entitled “Two-natured dominion in Thrace” (42) caused a lot of discussions. In this article it was noted:
“The overlord in Thrace and primarily a carrier of power is the Turkish Consulate there. It controls with methods of consistent absolutism the organized collective identity of the Muslims, it traps in fear and blackmails the Greek population. With unbelievable autarchy it imposes the identity and conscience of the Turkish nationality even in social groups without any clue of Turkish racial origin. It patrols unscrupulously the private life of the Muslim Greek citizens of the minority”.

The atmosphere of fear described by the article has led certain analyzers to ominous predictions (43) , foreseeing expansive actions of Turkey, bloody conflicts and a Kosovo-like future for Thrace in the next decade. The presence of Islamists in the political life of the Balkans is taken (Bougarel 1999) as a logical consequence of the collapse of the communist regimes and as a sign of the incorporation of the Balkan Islamic populations into the European political modernity. However, besides the attempts to manipulate Muslims, the provision of religious freedom in the post cold war Balkans has also accentuated a new democratic multiversity in the Islam as well as an individualization of religious faith.

We have attempted to show that for the Pomaks of Thrace the organization of national identities is not associated only with cultural otherness but also with the formulation of imagined religious boundaries, which are politically exploited through the cultivation of chauvinism, having as a long-term target the contestation of state borders. The dynamics of imagined boundaries extend to a wide range of forms, one of which is that of religious fanaticism. In the case of the Pomaks, the use of Islamic faith as a significant ethnic determinant factor is an attempt to compensate for the lack of official state existence for their ethnic group, although, in fact, Islam remains for the Pomaks a feature of secondary importance compared to that of their linguistic otherness.



NOTES

1. The English term fundamentalism derives from the Latin word fundamendum (foundation) meaning the return to the foundations of a tradition of the past, the adherence to the fundamental articles of faith and the militant defense of the cardinal elements of a religious heritage (Bezgos 2006:5). The term fundamentalism was firstly used during the 1830s in America concerning the Protestantism that supported the verbatim interpretation of the Holy Scriptures and the faithful implementation of doctrines, giving emphasis to the expected Second Coming.
2. E. Hobsbawm (1993). «A new threat to History», The New York Review of Books, New York, December 16, p. 62.
3. Α. Giddens (2001). Ο κόσμος των ραγδαίων αλλαγών. Πώς επιδρά η παγκοσμιοποίηση στη ζωή μας. [The world of rapid changes. How globalization affects our life] Athens:Metaihmio, 2001:91-93.
4. In the first category belong the “Hezbollah” in Lebanon, the “Islamic Salvation Front” in Algeria, “Hamas” in the Palestine, the “Islamic movement of the Tzatzikians” in Tzadzikistan. The movements of the second category do not recognize ethnic borders, they adopt holy war and they try to impose the return of Sariah as a foundation of the Islamic community (“uma”).
5. 2.190-193. Το Ιερό Κοράνιο [The Holy Kuran] Published by Ι.Latsis 1987, p. 43-44.
6. 8.39. Το Ιερό Κοράνιο. [The Holy Kuran] Op. cit. p. 250
7. 9.29. Op. cit. p. 263.
8. 41.27 Op. cit. p. 702
9. 2.256. Op. cit. p. 61.
10. 6.108-113. Op. cit. p. 192-3.
11. Todorova 2000:208.
12. In 1790, the earl Ferriéres de Sauveboeuf wrote: “The Ottomans may be led outside Europe but they will not change. Their fanaticism will lead them everywhere and the veil of religion will always cause this lack of consciousness that makes them everything that could help them move away from their prejudices, if they were closer to our habits” (Ferriéres de Sauveboeuf, Mémoires historiques et politiques des mes voyages fait depuis 1782 jusque’en 1789, en Turquie, en Perse et en Arabie, Maastricht and Paris, 1790 p. 302-303, quoted in Todorova 2000:180). Similar comments were made by Francois Pouqueville (Voyage en Morée, á Constantinople, en Albanie, et dans plusieurs autres parties da l’ Empire Ottoman pendant les années 1789-1799, 1800 et 1801. Paris, 1805, v. 1, p. 350-358, quoted in Todorova 2000:180-181), who, at the end of the 18th century associated the Islamic religion with barbarism: “The Turks, immersed in a bottomless barbarism, only think how they will destroy what they take. And this unpleasant phenomenon is related to their religion”.
13. In the beginning the Democratic Union for the Albanians in Kosovo (LDK), the Movement for Rights and Freedom (DPS) for the Turks in Bulgaria, the Democratic Action Party (SDA) for the Bosnian Muslims, the Party of Democratic Prosperity (PPD) for the Albanians in FYROM and the minority party of Sadik Ahmet in 1990 in Greece used names that did not contain any national outlooks. Later each of them proved to have a long-term nationalist orientation.
14. The religious conversions of the Ottomans stressed even more the religious character of the Ottoman Occupation. The attempts to islamize local populations started immediately after the arrival of the Ottomans and they were continued till the 19th century. Todorova (2000:369) points out that in many cases the conversion was a result of force but the majority of the cases of conversions were not due to force but happened as a result of indirect economic and social pressure. On the islamizations which took place after the Ottoman establishment in the Balkans see H.Melkidi 2007:33-34.
15. The residents of the mountain Pomak villages often reported the presence of foreigners in their area, who took political action trying to interfere with the issue of their identity. An informer told us: “In our village there are 30-35 persons who spoil the situation. Some of them are from Turkey. Every evening we argue on this subject”. Informer from Hryso village (Sminthi area) 65 years old (16/10/2007).
16. On 1/6/2008 Sabiha Souleimanoglou, president of the Cultural Association of Roma Women of Drosero was a victim of walloping by men in the settlement of Avanda in Alexandroupoli. See newspaper Empros 3/6/2008 p. 13 «Τη χτύπησαν γιατί είπε ότι είναι Ελληνίδα Ρομά» [“She was beaten because she said she is a Greek Roma woman”], Antifonites «Στο κράτος της οδού Άβαντος» [“In the state of Avandos street”] 11/6/2008 p. 4.
17. It is the tradition of the group suicide of girls (Ν.Kokkas, Ν.Konstantinides, R.Mehmetali, Τα Πομακοχώρια της Θράκης. Ιστορία, γλώσσα, περιήγηση, λαϊκός πολιτισμός.[The Pomak villages of Thrace. History, language, tour, folk culture] Odysseas:Athens, 2003, p. 130). According to this, young Pomak girls preferred to drop themselves from a rock in order to avoid the arrest from the Turks. Among the sites of Thrace connected with this tradition we mention the rock Gulém Kámen (big rock) in Glafki, the rocks Mómtski Kámen (girl’s rock) near Oreon, northeast of Pahni and north of Kotani, the rock Chervén Kámen (red rock) in Mantaina as well as the peak Marína over Aiora village. In the Pomak villages of Bulgaria there are similar traditions of the sacrifice of the girls in order to avoid arrest from the Turks. There are such sites in Smolyan ( Neviásta rock), in Siroka Laka and near Zlatograd (Mómin Kámen). In many cases it is mentioned that in the past various objects (such as rings) were found at the bottom of the cliff.
18. See on that “Thrakistan” Endohora 96 (2006-2007):19-28, which refers to the systematic efforts to build mosques along Egnatia Highway.
19. Ν. Kokkas «Μειονοτικές ιστοσελίδες Made in Turkey» [Minority websites Made in Turkey] Antifonites 19/9/2007 p. 6. We cite some of them below: http://www.buyukdoganca.eu/, http://www.sahinliler.com/, http://www.batitrakyalilar.com/, http://www.batitrakya.net/, http://www.batitrakyahaber.com/, http://www.ketenlik.gr/, http://iskece.com/ , http://www.iskeceliler.com/, http://www.iskeceturkbirligi.com/. Some on-line editions of Turkish-speaking minority newspapers are: http://www.gundemgazetesi.com/, http://www.ogretmeninsesi.org/, http://www.rodopruzgari.com/, http://www.millet.gr/index.php, http://www.gonuldengonule.com/index.asp, http://www.trakyaninsesi.com/.
20. Empros 7/12/2008 p. 5.
21. A few days before the municipal and prefecture elections of 2006 a many-member Turkish delegacy toured Thrace with the pretext of the Ramadan festival. The Bayram Pasa municipality in Istanbul organized a “caravan” touring all over the Balkans where there are populations of Turkish origin. Agonas 30/9/2006.
22. We note that Mustafa Kemal, with his 1924 reformation, aimed at erasing the Muslim past of the country and build a secular state resembling the western model as much as possible. For this reason he abolished the Arabic alphabet and followed a policy that discouraged religious events. Later, in 1938, during Ismet Inonu, the measures for the limitation of the role of religion were loosened. In 1950, the government of Adnan Menderes appealed to Muslim voters in many ways and used Islamism as a means for the accommodation of short-term party goals (Varvitsiotis 2008:75).
23. A typical example is the festival organized in Hilya site. see «Μαϊμουδο-πανηγυριών συνέχεια στην ορεινή Ροδόπη» [“Mock-festivals continued in mountainous Rhodope”] Antifonites 17-8-2005, 5.
24. For example, at the festival of Gelin Mezar tekhe on14-8-2005 the sign wrote: “GELIN MEZAR MAHYASI– HOŞGELDINIZ”.
25. In his letter to the press the Pomak Irfan Mehmetali denounces that the procedure of the elections was contrary to democratic procedures: “They did whatever they wanted, they noted whatever they wanted, the minions of the circuit and they did not ask anyone. Afterwards they got out and said what they had prepared in advance. Sheer mockery. We do not want the political games of the Turkish consulate and anybody else on our back. I do not understand what the prayer in the mosque has to do with the Greek-Turkish relations. Where else do such things happen? Do they happen in Turkey? In Arabia? They do not happen anywhere else, here they are allowed to do them…” newspaper Agonas 17/1/2007 p. 7, Empros 17/1/2007 p. 9. For the procedure of the elections also see S. Soltarides «Φαρσοκωμωδία στην Ξάνθη με την εκλογή ψευδομουφτή» [“Low comedy in Xanthi with the election of the pseudo-mufti”] Eleftherotypia 21/1/2007, «Μέτε σε ρόλο Αγκά» [Mete in the role of Aga] Antifonites 3/1/2007 p. 5.
26. Empros 21/3/2008 p. 3 Μ. Xanthopoulou «Κάποιοι στην μειονότητα σηκώνουν ψηλά τον αμανέ» [“Some minority people have gone over the traces”]. On the institutional role of the mufti and the political role of the pseudo-mufti see S. Soltarides (1997). Η ιστορία των μουφτειών της Δυτικής Θράκης, [The history of the mufti offices of Western Thrace] Nea Synora-Α.Α.Livanis and S. Georgoulis (1995). «Ο θεσμός του μουφτή στην ελληνική και αλλοδαπή έννομη τάξη» [“The role of the mufti in Greek and foreign lawful order”] Prosengisi July-August:115-117.
27. The Cultural Association of the Pomaks of Xanthi Prefecture was established in 2006 and was recognized with No. 23/2007 decree of the one-member Court of first instance of Xanthi on 7 February 2007. According to the statute of the association, its aims are: the social, spiritual and cultural development of its members, with the organization of cultural events for the preservation and promotion of the cultural heritage of the Pomaks of Xanthi Prefecture – The cooperation with scientific, spiritual organizations, other associations, companies or unions. – The study of the traditional culture and the language of the Pomaks of Xanthi Prefecture. – The construction with traditional means and promotion of traditional costumes of the mountain range of Rhodope. – The promotion of traditional agriculture and biological farming in Xanthi Prefecture.
28. «Όμηροι των Τούρκων οι Πομάκοι της Θράκης»[“The Pomaks of Thrace hostages of the Turks”] Proto Thema 29/4/2007 p. 46. On this subject there was a relevant interpellation to the Parliament by MP K. Aivaliotis – see K.Aivaliotis «Τούρκοι τραμπούκοι και παρακρατικοί εν δράσει στην Ελληνική Θράκη» [“Turkish bullyboys and parastates in action in Greek Thrace”] Xanthi News 5/1/2008 p. 3. On the direct involvement of Turkey in political intrigues in Thrace see S. Lygeros «Πλοκάμια της Εργκένεκον στη Δυτική Θράκη» [“Tentacles of Ergenekom in Western Thrace”] Kosmos tou Ependyti-6/7/2008 p. 18-19.
29. In their answer the presiding board of the association wrote among other things: “we regard as our inalienable right to preserve our language and the cultural heritage of our ancestors as well as our Muslim religion. Our religion is Muslim and we are proud about this but we are also Greek citizens and our mother tongue is Pomak … We do not have any problem with the Turkish nation but as citizens we want to have our right safeguarded to determine ourselves as Pomak Muslims and we ask from everybody to respect our origin, our language and our history in the same way that we respect them”. Newspaper Empros 18/4/2007, p. 13.
30. Millet 72 (5/4/2007) and 77 (12/4/2007) entitled “Sözde “Pomak” derneğine soydaşlarιmιz lânet okuyor” (The people of our nation curse the so-called “Pomak association”). Also see Xanthi News 913 (13/4/2007) «Δέχθηκαν απειλές μετά τη δημοσιοποίηση των ονομάτων τους» [“They were threatened after their names were published”], O Kosmos tou Ependyti 14/4/2007 p. 25 «Οι Τούρκοι απειλούν τους Πομάκους» [“The Turks threaten the Pomaks”], Antifonites 218 (11/4/2007) «Τολμηρή πομάκικη πρωτοβουλία – Ιταμή τούρκικη πρόκληση» [“Brave Pomak initiative – Insolent Turkish threat”].
31. Millet No. 100, 25-10-2007 .
32. Millet No. 72, 5/4/2007.
33. This number is arbitrary. According to valid data, the population composition of the Muslim minority on the whole of Thrace is: Roma – Tsingans:: 18.000 (16%), Pomak speakers: 38.000 (34%), Turkish speakers: 56.000 (50%), see Vakalios 1997:24.
34. Millet, No. 74, 19/4/2007. Against the editors of Millet newspaper, Omer Cengis and Bilal Budur, an accusation was impeached by the district attorney’s office in Xanthi (ΑΒΜ Α2007/2648, actionable 13/5/2008 - postponed) for “public excitation to mutual discord done in common and serially by press”.
35. The word derives from the Turkish word kâfιr: gentile, pagan, sacrilegious, profane, unholy, kâfιrlik: irreverence, unholiness.
36. In an article of Empros newspaper (Empros 29/9/2007 p. 14 Marianna Xanthopoulou «Το σχέδιο και ο εκτελεστής» [“The plan and the executioner”) concerning the election of the minority candidate of PASOK Mr Tsetin Mandaci in the elections it is pointed out: “the result of the elections concerning the minority vote was not accidental or a result of the influence or persuasion of Mr Mandaci upon the minority; it was a creation of many responsible brains, who elaborated and accomplished, through performing instruments, a plan which aimed at the coordinated direction of the minority vote in Xanthi and Komotini”. For the accomplishment of this aim many members were used, conferences were organized with screams of hatred against the unbelievers, ballots were distributed in mosques, citizens living in other municipalities were moved from Istanbul.
37. Βλ. Xanthi News 6/6/2007 p. 12, Empros 7/6/2007 p. 11.
38. From other political parties Popular Orthodox Alert (ΛΑΟΣ) has often referred to the subject of the linguistic rights of the Pomaks with interpellations of G. Karatzaferis in the European Parliament («Το Πομακικό στην Ευρωβουλή» [“The Pomak issue in European Parliament”] Antifonites 23/5/2007 p. 5). In the past similar questions had been asked in the European Parliament by the European Parliament member G. Marinos (see. Antifonites 29/11/2001 p. 5, Paratirites 4/12/2003) whereas S. Xarhakos invited a delegacy of Thracian Pomaks to the European Parliament in Brussels on 22-24/3/2005.
39. Newspaper Ο Hronos 12/7/2007 p. 13.
40. D.Michael 2003b.
41. In order to blame somebody who tries to be in good terms with all, some people use the following Turkish proverb: «Anam kacar babam gelir, babam kacar agam gelir, agam kacar kardaşim gelir» (Mother leaves fother comes, father leaves the aga comes, the aga leaves brother comes) (informant Vasilis Sgourakis, born in 1941 in Ehinos).
42. Kathimerini tis Kyriakis, 19-3-2006.
43. L. Kaneli (2008) «Κάτω τα χέρια από τη Θράκη» [“Get your hands out of Thrace”] Nemesis, March, 85:3-9, where it is noted among other things: “Thrace is the privileged European geostrategic landscape for the expansion of the western imperialist interests towards the East aiming at Caucasus and Russia… With Greek Thrace rapidly becoming an area-power keg for the minorities with acute or invented problems and at least two petrol and gas pipes passing through its region, how many years do you think are needed for a new Kosovo? I bet fewer than ten without bloodshed and fewer than ten with blood”. See opposite estimations in Eleftherotypia “The dangerous nostalgia of the policy of discrimination. Why Thrace is not Kosovo” 7/6/2008 p. 53.




BIBLIOGRAPHY

Adrianopoulos Α. (1991). Ο ισλαμικός φανατισμός και οι κίνδυνοι για την Ελλάδα. [Islamic fanaticism and the dangers for Greece] Athens:Libro.
Adrianopoulos Α. (2006). «Ανθρωπογεωγραφία, διαιρέσεις και θρησκευτικός φανατισμός στο σύγχρονο Ισλάμ» [“Human Geography, divisions and religious fanaticism in modern Islam”] in P.Kalaitzides-N.Dodos, Ισλάμ και φονταμενταλισμός. Ορθοδοξία και παγκοσμιοποίηση. [Islam and fundamentalism. Orthodoxy and globalization] Athens:Indiktos, 43-57.
Anderson J. (2002). “The treatment of religious minorities in South-Eastern Europe: Greece and Bulgaria compared” Religion, State & Society 30:1, 9-31.
Anderson, B. (1983). Imagined Communities, London:Verso.
Barth, F. (ed.) (1969). Ethnic groups and boundaries: The social organization of culture difference. London: Waveland Press.
Bauman G. (1999). The Multicultural Riddle. Rethinking National, Ethnic, and Religious Identities. New York & London:Routledge.
Bezgos Μ. (2006) «Φονταμενταλισμός και Ισλάμ σήμερα» [“Fundamentalism and Islam today”] in P. Kalaitzides-Ν. Dodos, Ισλάμ και φονταμενταλισμός. Ορθοδοξία και παγκοσμιοποίηση. [Islam and fundamentalism. Orthodoxy and globalization] Athens:Indiktos, 59-64.
Bougarel X. (1999). “Islam and politics in the post-communist Balkans” Workshop: New approaches to Southeast Europe, Cambridge, Mass.
Brunnbauer U. (2001). “The perception of Muslims in Bulgaria and Greece: Between the “self” and the “other”” Journal of Muslim Minority Affairs, 21:1, 39-61.
Cohen A.P. (1985). The symbolic construction of community. London and New York:Routledge.
Danova M. (2001). “Transformations of ethnic identity: the case of the Bulgarian Pomaks”, C. Lord, O. Strietska-Ilina, Parallel Cultures. Majority/minority relations in the countries of the former Eastern Bloc. Ashgate.
Detrez R. (2000). “Religion and Nationhood in the Balkans”. International Institute for the Study of Islam in the Modern World Newsletter, 5:26.
Donnan H. & T.M. Wilson (1999). Borders. Frontiers of Identity, Nation and State. Oxford & New York:Berg.
Eriksen T.H., (2002). Ethnicity and Nationalism. Pluto Press, London-Sterling Virginia.
Fisher W.F. (2001). Fluid boundaries. Forming and transforming identity in Nepal. New York: Columbia University Press.
Frangopoulos Ι.T. (2007). «Τζαμί, πλατεία, καφενείο: Κοινωνική μετάβαση και χωρική οργάνωση στους Πομάκους της Θράκης» [“Mosque, square, café: Social transition and spatial organization in the Pomaks of Thrace”]. Ethnologia 13:5-48.
Geertz C. (2003). Η ερμηνεία των πολιτισμών. [The interpretation of cultures]. Athens:Alexandreia.
Gellner E. (1992). Έθνη και εθνικισμός. [Nations and Nationalism] Athens:Alexandreia.
Giannoulatos Α. (2006). Ισλάμ. Θρησκειολογική επισκόπηση. [Islam. Science of religion review] Athens:Akritas.
Govers C., H.Vermeulen (eds) (1997). The politics of ethnic consciousness. Palgrave-Macmillan.
Hobsbawm E.J. (1994). Έθνη και εθνικισμός από το 1780 μέχρι σήμερα. Πρόγραμμα, μύθος και πραγματικότητα. [Nations and nationalism from 1780 till today. Programme, myth and reality. Athens:Kardamitsa.
Hutchinson J. & A. Smith (eds) (1996). Ethnicity. Oxford & New York:Oxford University Press.
Karambelias G. (2001) Ισλάμ και παγκοσμιοποίηση. Η θανάσιμη διελκυστίνδα. [Islam and globalization. The deadly tug of war] Athens:Enallaktikes Ekdoseis.
Kaufmann E.P. (ed.) (2004). Rethinking ethnicity. London and New York:Routledge.
Kokkas N. (2005b). «Religious summer festivals of the Pomaks in the mountainous area of Xanthi» 1st International Conference on “Greek Civilization” Conference Proceedings The public festival: A diachronic glimpse at its socio-economic and political role. Town of Soufli – Prefecture of Evros – Thrace - Greece (17-20 November 2005).
Kokkas N. (2005a). “Tradition vs. change in the orality of the Pomaks in Western Thrace. - The role of folklore in determining the Pomak identity” in Steinke K. & C. Voss (eds.) The Pomaks in Greece and Bulgaria. A model case for borderland minorities in the Balkans. München: Südosteuropa-Gesellschaft- Verlag Otto Sagner, p. 75-114.
Kokkas N. (2006). “Plurilingualism and minority education in Greek Thrace” in Th.Malkides (ed.) Aspects of Southeastern Europe and the Black Sea after the cold war. Athens:Gordios, 117-129.
Landau J.M. (1981). Παντουρκισμός. Το δόγμα του τουρκικού επεκτατισμού. [Turkism. The doctrine of Turkish expansionism] Athens:Thetile.
Malkides T. & Ν.Kokkas (eds.) (2006). Μετασχηματισμοί της συλλογικής ταυτότητας των Πομάκων.[Transformations of the collective identity of the Pomaks] Xanthi:Spanides.
Markou K. (1957). “Les Pomaques de Grèce » Cahiers Balkaniques 25, 51-59.
Markou K. (2002). “Les Pomaques de Thrace grecque et leurs choix langagiers” Etudes balkaniques 9 :42-51.
Markou K. (2003). “La terminologie adoptée à propos des musulmans de Thrace grecque” Mesogeios 20-21 :43-55.
Markou Κ. (2006). «Πομάκοι και επιτόπια έρευνα στην ελληνική Θράκη: Πολιτικές συνιστώσες και βιωματική εμπειρία» [“Pomaks and local research in Greek Thrace. Political constituents and practical experience”], in T. Iosephides & M. Spyridakis, Ποιοτική κοινωνική έρευνα. Μεθοδολογικές προσεγγίσεις και ανάλυση δεδομένων, [Qualitative social research. Methodological approaches and data analysis] Athens:Kritiki, 51-74.
Markou Κ.(2004-5). «Χώρος, κοινωνικές σχέσεις και ταυτότητες στην πόλη της Ξάνθης» [“Space, social relations and identities in the city of Xanthi”] Εθνολογία 11:21-58.
Melkidi H. (2007). Τα μουσουλμανικά μνημεία της Ξάνθης. [The muslim monuments of Xanthi] Athens:Techniko Epimelitirio Ellados.
Merdjanova I. (2006) “Uneasy tolerance: Interreligious relations in Bulgaria after the fall of communism” Religion in Eastern Europe 26(1):1-10.
Michail D. (2007). “Education and power relations within a Slavic speaking Muslim group in Greece: The case of the Pomaks of Xanthi”, in Steinke K. & C. Voss (eds.) The Pomaks in Greece and Bulgaria. A model case for borderland minorities in the Balkans. München:Südosteuropa-Gesellschaft- Verlag Otto Sagner, p. 115-137.
Michail, D. (2002). «The Imposed Trilingualism and the Making of Illiteracy: The Case of the Pomaks in the Mountainous Area of Xanthi», Peri Thrakis 2, 271-287.
Michail, D. (2003a. “The institutional labyrinth and political dimensions of the Muslim minorities’ education in Western Thrace” Peri Thrakis 3, 271-282.
Michail, D. (2003b). From ‘Locality’ to ‘European Identity’: Shifting Identities among the Pomak Minority in Greece. 2nd Conference of the International Association for South-eastern Anthropology (In ASEA) Graz.Also in Ethnologia Balkanica 7.
Munson H. (2000) “Islamism and Nationalism” International Institute for the Study of Islam in the Modern World Newsletter, 5:10.
Papademetriou P. (2003). Οι Πομάκοι της Ροδόπης. Από τις εθνοτικές σχέσεις στους Βαλκανικούς εθνικισμούς. (1870-1990) [The Pomaks of Rhodope. From the ethnic relationships to Balkan nationalism. (1870-1990) Thessaloniki:Kyriakides.
Roy O. (2000). “Muslims in Europe. From ethnic identity to religious recasting” International Institute for the Study of Islam in the Modern World Newsletter, 5:1.
Said E. (2002). Καλύπτοντας το Ισλάμ. Πώς τα Μ.Μ.Ε. και οι αναλυτές καθορίζουν την εικόνα που έχουμε για τον υπόλοιπο κόσμο. [Covering Islam. How the Mass Media and analysers determine the view that we have for the rest of the world] Athens: Nepheli.
Said E.D. (1996). Οριενταλισμός. [Orientalism] Athens: Nepheli.
Todorova M. (2000). Βαλκάνια. Η δυτική φαντασίωση. [Balkans. The western fancy] Athens:Paratirites.
Troubeta S. (2000). “Μειονότητες και εθνοτική ταυτοποίηση” [“Minorities and ethnic identification”] Ethnologia 8, 174-210.
Troubeta S. (2001). Κατασκευάζοντας Ταυτότητες για τους Μουσουλμάνους της Θράκης, [Constructing identities for the Muslims of Athens:Minority Groups Research Centre-Kritiki.
Tsimbiridou F. (2000). «Πομάκος σημαίνει άνθρωπος του βουνού» [“Pomak means man of the mountain, in Β. Nitsiakos & H. Kasimis Ο Ορεινός Χώρος της Βαλκανικής, [The mountainous area of the Balkans] 35-52, Athens:Plethron.
Tsimbiridou F. (2000). Les Pomak dans la Thrace grecque. Discours ethnique et pratique socioculturelles. Paris: L’Harmattan.
Tsimbiridou F. (2007). « ‘Silence’ as an idiom of marginality among Greek Pomaks » in Steinke K. & C. Voss (eds.) The Pomaks in Greece and Bulgaria. A model case for borderland minorities in the Balkans. München:Südosteuropa-Gesellschaft- Verlag Otto Sagner, p. 49-73.
Tsimbiridou F. (ed.) (2006). «Μουσουλμάνες της ανατολής». Αναπαραστάσεις, πολιτισμικές σημασίες και πολιτικές.[“Muslim women of the east” Representations, cultural meanings and policies] Athina:Kritiki.
Tsioumis Κ. & D.Michail (2005). «Το ζήτημα της ταυτότητας των Πομάκων: Ιστορική και ανθρωπολογική προσέγγιση» [The issue of the identity of the Pomaks: Historical and anthropological approach] Peri Thrakis 4:237-258.
Tsioumis, Κ. (1997). Οι Πομάκοι στο Ελληνικό Κράτος (1920-1950), [The Pomaks in the Greek state (1920-1950] Thessaloniki:Promithefs.
Tsioumis, Κ.Α. (2006). Η μουσουλμανική μειονότητα της Θράκης (1950-1960). [The Muslim minority of Thrace (1950-1960) Thessaloniki:Stamoulis.
Tsitselikis Κ. & Christopoulos D. (1997). Το Μειονοτικό Φαινόμενο στην Ελλάδα, [The minority phenomenon in Greece] Athens:Kritiki.
Τariq A. (2003). H σύγκρουση των φονταμενταλισμών. Σταυροφορίες, τζιχάντ και νεωτερικότητα. [The conflict of fundamentalisms. Crusades, jihad and modernity] Athens:Agra.
Vakalios T. (1997). Το πρόβλημα της Διαπολιτισμικής Εκπαίδευσης στη Δυτική Θράκη, [The problem of intercultural education in Western Thrace] Athens:Gutenberg.
Varbitsiotes Ι. & S. Roussos (2008). Τυφλοί στρατοί: Η δύση και η απειλή του ισλαμικού φονταμενταλισμού. [Blind armies: The west and the threat of Islamic fundamentalism] Athens:Kastaniotes.


*Paper presented in the International Conference «FOLK CULTURES AND BOUNDARIES IN THE BALKANS», Volos, 6-8 June 2008, Greece