Islam in the Balkans: Religion and Society Between Europe and the Arab World

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Univ of South Carolina Press, 1993 - Religion - 304 pages
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The tragic events that began to unfold in the former Yugoslavia at the beginning of the 1990s have drawn the world's attention to the history and rich culture of the Muslim communities of Bosnia especially, but also of Albania, Kosovo and Macedonia - the historic heartland of Muslim Europe. Here H. T. Norris breaks new ground by focusing on their religious and intellectual links with the Arab world, Persia and Central Asia, whereas the few previous publications on the subject have been mostly concerned with the more obvious links between the Balkan Muslims and the Turks. Norris illustrates from a wide range of sources the many channels through which the Arabs and Persians were linked with Balkan peoples, especially after the Ottoman conquest, in their art, architecture, literature and religion - direct contacts were also forged through Sufism. From the earliest times, also, many Balkan Muslim soldiers and bureaucrats, as well as scholars and poets, made an impact on the wider Islamic world, the most prominent being Mohammed Ali, the founder of modern Egypt.
The resurgence of Muslim identity in Bosnia-Hercegovina and Kosovo has of course much to do with the aggressive nature of Serbian nationalism. But it is also a legacy of the region's relations over many centuries with the Arab countries and Persia, now given a new meaning in the wake of Serbian attempts to 'cleanse' Sarajevo and other cities of their Muslim inhabitants.
As the wider world has become aware, for the first time in several generations, of the phenomenon of Muslim Europe, many people of all persuasions now want to know and understand more about it, and the forces which have been tearing ancient communities apart and threatening a wider conflagration. Up till now, the sources available to them have been largely concerned with power politics, economics and demography. H. T. Norris's cultural investigation, the fruit of many years' research, corrects this imbalance.
  

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Contents

Introduction
1
The Arabs the Slavs the Hungarian Saracens and
10
The Arab threat to Byzantium
19
Pecheneg and Khwarizmian Muslims in medieval Hungary
26
The Amauts
33
Oriental influences on Islamic and nonIslamic life
43
Islam and the Balkan city
49
Arabic and Persian scholarship
58
Muslim heroes of the Bulgars the Tatars of the Dobrudja
138
The folk epic religious mission miracles and many tombs
146
Kruje Sari Saltik and Gjerg Elez Alia in Albania and Bosnia
155
Albanian Sufi poets of the nineteenth and twentieth
161
Balkan Muslims in the history of the Maghrib Egypt
196
Bridges and barriers of Islamic faith and culture within
253
Syncretic movements and religious bridgebuilding in the late
263
Islam in Kosovo
271

Islamic popular literature
64
Early nineteenthcentury poets
73
Sufi movements and orders in the Balkans and their
82
The Bakiashiyya
89
NonShllte Sufi orders in the Balkans
100
The Future
277
The Serbian view of Islam in the 1980s
295
Index of Persons and Nationalities
302
Copyright

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