Coexistence and conviviality in multi-faith, multi-ethnic Burgazadasi, the princes' islands of Istanbul

Duru, Neriman Deniz (2013) Coexistence and conviviality in multi-faith, multi-ethnic Burgazadasi, the princes' islands of Istanbul. Doctoral thesis (PhD), University of Sussex.

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This thesis aims to provide an understanding of the existing cultural plurality and diversity in Burgazadası, within a post-Ottoman and homogenising context in Turkey. Most of the scholars working on conflict resolution and peace projects in the Balkans and the Middle East have attempted to analyse cultural plurality with the concept of “coexistence”. “Coexistence” as a concept presupposes the pre-existing categories of ethnicity, class and religion (i.e. coexistence between Israelis and Palestinians; Greek and Turkish Cypriots; Serbs, Croats and Bosnians). In this thesis, I demonstrate the inadequacy of the concept of “coexistence” and propose a “conviviality” approach to explore cultural pluralism. In the post-Ottoman, Turkish context in Burgaz, “coexistence” can be used when describing the homogenisation process, the construction and perception of categorisations of differences, the crystallisation of ethnic and religious identities and ruptures to cultural pluralism; but it is deficient in describing the continuity of cultural pluralism and what is shared between the members of the community in Burgaz. By contrast, “conviviality” provides an understanding of the continuity of cultural pluralism in Burgaz, the changes in sociality patterns, shared ways of living, the diversity and differentiations within “different groups”, the islanders’ sense of belonging in Burgaz, their appreciation of diversity and acts of solidarity at the times of crisis. I argue that the homogenisation process in Turkey brought ruptures in cultural pluralism in Turkey, and changed the demographics in Burgaz; however the homogenisation process did not rupture the conviviality on the island and Burgazian identity which embraces all types of diversities of its inhabitants. At times of crisis, like in September 1955 riots, Burgaz islanders emphasised their shared Burgaz identity which overrode religious, class and ethnic differences

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Schools and Departments: School of Global Studies > Anthropology
Subjects: D History General and Old World > DR History of Balkan Peninsula > DR0401 Turkey
G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GN Anthropology > GN301 Ethnology. Social and cultural anthropology > GN537 Ethnic groups and races
Depositing User: Library Cataloguing
Date Deposited: 07 Mar 2013 08:52
Last Modified: 08 Sep 2015 14:26

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