The ‘Forbidden Fruit’: Islam and Politics of Identity in Kosovo and Macedonia

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Abstract

This paper depicts the interplay of religion and politics, as well as of external and internal actors among Albanian communities in Kosovo and Macedonia. It argues that Islam has never been allowed into the political space, despite occasional attempts to politicize it and utilize it for political and nationalist expediency. This relative absence of Islam from the political sphere is due to a specific social and political context, as well as to a specific historical experience. However, one can depict a higher presence of Islam among Albanians in Macedonia, for reasons related to their position as a minority within an Orthodox majority country that is undergoing a process of reaffirmation of religion as an essential pillar of an emerging Macedonian national identity.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)191-207
Number of pages16
JournalSoutheast European and Black Sea Studies
Volume11
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2011

Keywords

  • Albanians; religion; identity; nationalism; Islam; Kosovo; Macedonia

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