Title "Fields of Wheat, Hills of Blood: Passages to Nationhood in Greek Macedonia, 1870-1990"
Author Karakasidou, Anastasia
Publisher Chicago: The University of Chicago Press
Annotation The well-known anthropologist explores the complex process, which led to the transformation of the ‘multiethnic’ village of Gjuvezna, situated in Eastern Greek Macedonia, into today’s Greek town of Assiros. Assuming that ethnicity is ‘a fluid, historically rooted construct … subject to change’, Karakasidou analyzes the local socio-economic context around the turn of the 20th century and the nationalist competition supported by the Churches and played by armed bands. She also studies the later Greek state identity politics and insists on the instrumental role of local actors of nation building – the notables (tsorbatzides). Thus, Karakasidou attempts to grasp the importance of individual activity in the national homogenization process – an aspect that is often neglected by studies dealing exclusively with state decisions and strategies. The valuable anthropological fieldwork is unfortunately blemished by certain uncritical historiographic interpretations and even by historical mistakes. For instance, it is quite doubtful that the Internal Macedonian (in the period under scrutiny Macedono-Adrianopolitan) Revolutionary Organization promoted a ‘Macedonian national consciousness’ (p. 100-101); the Civil war in Greece did not begin in 1947 (p. 207) but in 1945 or even, according to some interpretations, in 1943 etc. (also relevant to sub-field 4)
Author of Annotation Tchavdar Marinov
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