Reviews

Almost deprived of a critical apparatus, this article skims through the history of North-Caucasian diasporas in Turkey through different periods from the aftermath of the Caucasian War in the 1850s to the early twenty-first century. Though the author’s overall observation is the preservation of ethnic identity ― the components of which are not very clearly defined ―, his narrative also mentions the consequences of long periods of disintegration and assimilation (for Ossetians, in particular). Such was the case, for instance, between the 1920s and 1980s, a period marked by the destruction of the traditional household system of many Circassian villages, and by the constant rise of the drift from the land. The author also evokes the short periods of interference of the Army in the political life (especially those of 1971-3 and 1980-3) as periods of repression of the North Caucasian nationalist movements and association, suspected of separatism. Conversely, the three past decades are depicted as an era of renewal of communal sentiment and activity, encouraged notably by the stabilisation of economic development in Turkey, by the liberalisation of the legislation and unprecedented recognition of ethnic minorities, as well as by the radical change of the political and economic situation in the former USSR, which has allowed for the establishment of numerous contacts and the reorganisation of the Circassian movement.

The Redaction
CER: II-3.3.C-217