Reviews

It is recently that historians have begun to show interest in the numerically important émigré (muhajir) communities from varied regions of the Northern Caucasus that have settled down in the central lands of the former Ottoman Caliphate—in the aftermath of the first Caucasian Wars, and of the Russo-Turkish War of 1877-1878.  If the author develops on the endogenous factors of the migration of the Muslim populations of the Northern Caucasus toward the Ottoman Empire (in particular on the role of local potentates after the establishment of the Russian dominance), he also studies in detail the often miserable destiny of migrants after their settling in Anatolia or in the Near East.  The book, in particular, gives a large room to their recruitment into the army and police, first by the Sublime Porte (in 1877-8 for its war against Russia, and later for the repression of independence movements in Syria–Palestine), then by the French and British mandatory administrations in Syria and in Jordan (for the repression of the same movements).  The book ends with a captivating chapter on the strategies for integration that were developed, at the eve of the independence of Syria and Jordan, by the muhajirs from the Northern Caucasus for getting rid of the professional, social, and ethnic ghettoisation imposed on them successively by the Ottomans and by the European mandatory administrations.  This important book must be added to the now highly topical file of the complex history of the relations between the migrant populations from the northern Caucasus with their respective countries of adoption and with their regions of origin inside the present-day Federation of Russia.

Stéphane A. Dudoignon, National Centre for Scientific Research, Paris
CER: I-3.3.C-235