Title "A Rising to Count On: Ilinden Between Politics and History in Post-Yugoslav Macedonia". In The Macedonian Question: Culture, Historiography, Politics, edited by Victor Roudometof, 143-172.
Author Brown, Keith
Publisher Boulder: East European Monographs
Annotation Brown highlights certain symbolic stakes of the representation of the past in the course of the Republic of Macedonia’s transition to sovereignty. At the first place, he discusses the institutional framework of Macedonian historiography – more concretely, the Institute for national history in Skopje. Brown exposes the nationalist assignment of local historians, their positivistic know-how, rigid hierarchies and professional habitus of keepers of specialized knowledge inaccessible to ‘non-experts’. However, the direct political implications of scientific production are brought to light by the current historiographic revisionism: Brown describes the debates about personalities like the first Macedonian ‘president’ Metodija Andonov-Čento (victim of the communist regime) and, especially, the denounced by mainstream historians Boris Sarafov – one of the leaders of the Ilinden uprising in 1903. The reference to the ‘Second Ilinden’ (the proclamation of a Macedonian state in the framework of ‘popular’ Yugoslavia by Tito’s partisans in 1944) is analyzed by Brown with regard to its political function of a symbolic legitimating of Yugoslav regime and contrasted to the new appeal for a ‘Third Ilinden’. The latter presupposes a radical break with the communist past – a symbolic gesture that, in the Macedonian case, hides the risk of denying the dominant articulation of national identity and memory.

Apart from Brown’s and Friedman’s contributions, the collective volume of Victor Roudometof includes number of articles that merit attention, especially the texts of Danforth (on ‘confessional nationalism’ in the Australian Macedonian diaspora), Gounaris and Michailidis (on the historiographies about the ‘Macedonian question’), Karakasidou (on the national homogenization in Western Greek Macedonia) etc. (also relevant to sub-fields 2, 6, 11)

Author of Annotation Tchavdar Marinov
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