Ottoman millet system effect of Balkan ethnicity Mar 26, 2008 16:48:22 GMT -5
Post by Arlin on Mar 26, 2008 16:48:22 GMT -5
panagiotopoulos said:Then why is that Arvanites identify with Greeks? Do you think it may have to do with the Ottoman millet system which ultimately aligned Arvanites and Greeks together ethnically, religiously and culturally and the Albanians in the north aligned with Turks ethnically, religiously, and culturally.
Who one identifies with is a function of socio-economics: as the muslim-tax in Albania proved during the Ottoman empire. If you are going to discriminate, you won't get a straight answer.
Aligned? They didn't. That's how the ottoman empire worked, dividing people by any means possible and then shuffling forced-boy soldiers from one area to the other instigating hate. Unifying people meant having to give them more autonomy. This is why Greeks survived the Turks better. In the times of the ottoman invasion there was no real unified state neither in Albania nor in Greece. Albania was run in small principalities (through noble families) and Greece still had strong city state governing. However, your city states were stronger then our principates - hence you were afforded much more autonomy - one of the reasons your religion survived better. Albanians weren't morally weak, they were politically not ready for war as we never had a war culture.... Kanaris is right about this, I consider the Albanian ancient worrier stuff to be utter crap too...
No disrespect but this Ottoman millet system had profound effects on the modern day Balkans especially in regard to ethnicity.
Ethnicity? I think you must mean religion. Again, no real Turks settled in our lands. It was mostly kept under control from the military. (The only few turks you will ever find are in Macedonia and are very distinct from us - ie. they all speak turkce). Hence other then their religion forced onto us, from where would we have borrowed their culture? If that were the case, you would have turks throughout northern Greece etc... After all, an entire turkish population doesn't just tiptoe across lands to set up satellite colonies...
The Christian Albanians are by FAR very different than their muslim country men. It is to the point that Christian Albanians don't even exist anymore because the majority of those Albanians ended up in Greece after the independence.
I don't think you're being disrespectful, but you just have the facts wrong. No Christians left in Albania? That would be my entire family and at least half of my neighborhood there. (You conducted a census or something?) You might not understand how two religions might coexist because until recently you lived in a very homogenous society.
You again assume that Christians would preferentially (over muslims) leave Albania for Greece because they were being oppressed? Actually, during communist rule it was muslims who were much much more oppressed and stigmatized. That is why even today muslims in Albania are of a lower socio-economic status vs. the christians. THIS is what contributes to your perception that "Christian Albanians are different then the Muslim ones". Besides where did you get such an observation, certainly not based on facts. I don’t see the differences you are referring to… O.O? If we were indeed so different culturally and not just religiously, how could we coexist the way we do today? My next door neighbor is muslim (of the mosque going type), so was half my high school class… Ironically the Orthodox Church in Tirana is on the same street, 50m down from the Catholic one. And 100m up this street is a Mosque… I don’t know what you base this cultural similarity of Albanians with Turks. There is as much similarity between Turks and us as there is between Turks, Romania, Bulgaria, Macedonia and yes… even Greece. Very little indeed..
My personal opinion is that the Albanian people were split in two ethnically, religiously and culturally between TourkoAlvani and Arvanites. The two groups matured and evolved separately and formed two completely different animals.
Your entire reasoning is based on the assumption that religion dictates ethnicity thus for you, there can be no division. In the 21st century this just isn’t true because we theoretically have overcome those conditions where people needed to be so unified in the Thomas Hobbes way - our life is not for the sole purpose of survival. Religion does not dictate ethnicity. At present day, whatever artificial cultural division imposed to us by the turks in the 17th century has evaporated....
In an age where ideas not violence dictate law, you have the freedom to believe in a religion based on the message it professes WITHOUT the fear that you will loose your ethnicity. Example:
Are you only culturally Greek because you are orthodox Christian? Or to draw the Albanian comparison where the religious experience is condensed to simply your given name: Are you only culturally Greek because you have a Greek name? If you had a different name/religion would you not be Greek?
You know, you should challenge your teachings a bit more rather then parrot them back. In the modern day an opinion not based on facts is as good as a non-opinion, or even worse: self-rationalization of bias/bigotry. And that just looses you all credibility.