By Tord Olsson
Within the emerging momentum for brand spanking new and reformulated cultural identities, the Turkish Alevi have additionally emerged at the scene, tough due acceptance. during this strategy a few dramatic occasions have served as very important milestones: the clashes among Sunni and Alevi in Kahramanmaras in 1979 and Corum in 1980, the incendiarism in Sivas in 1992, and the riots in Istanbul (Gaziosmanpasa) in 1995. much less evocative, yet in the end extra major, has been the emerging curiosity in Alevi folklore and spiritual practices. Questions have additionally arisen as to what this department of Islamic heterodoxy represents by way of previous and new identities. during this ebook, those questions are addressed by way of probably the most well-liked students within the box.
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Additional resources for Alevi Identity: Cultural, Religious and Social Perspectives (Transactions (Svenska Forskningsinstitutet I Istanbul), V. 8.)
Alevi and Bektashi started to reflect openly on the doctrines and ritual practices of their once esoteric religion—a transgression that would in former times have incurred the penalty of exclusion from the community. By way of contrast Alevism is nowadays no longer something mysterious, “Alevi reality” can no longer be avoided in Turkey’s social and political life, even if the enthusiasm that set the Alevi community into motion in the early nineties and which brought the topic to the fore has somewhat abated.
Nevertheless, this indication of a complex background that we can offer ultimately is perhaps the one justification for our interfering with the process of cultural recreation that we have gathered together to celebrate and to discuss. 1 Some ten years ago such a statement would hardly have come to the minds of those who were neither experts in the field nor Alevi religious authorities. 2 They were always quite instrumentalist approaches, rather than serious attempts to keynote the substance of Alevi faith, rituals and morals.
He proposes that “the Sunni villages are more successful than the Alevi villages at moving into the modern world” (Shankland 1993b: p. 47), because their ethics, social order and life-style is “compatible with” the concept of a “national, centralized administrative system”, which demands a patrimonial relation between citizen and state (Shankland 1993a: p. 5). The Alevi could only integrate, after “relinquishing [their]… belief in their myths, rituals and ideals” (Shankland 1993b: p. 47). : p. 58; 1993a: passim).