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Deuxième partie. La Turquie et l'Europe. Études de terrain

A Communicative Figuration Between Sarajevo and Istanbul in the Course of Gentrificating Turkey’s Post-Ottoman Hinterland

Thomas Schad
p. 127-139

Texte intégral

  • 1  In 2016, the Bosnian journalist Emina žuna delivered a detailed overview of the discourse of the “ (...)

1In 2009, the first Yunus Emre Institute outside Turkey opened its doors in the Bosnian capital Sarajevo, to be followed by two other branches in the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, turning the small country in the Western Balkans into of the hubs of Turkish cultural diplomacy. Since then, the Turkish presence in Bosnia-Herzegovina (as well as in the neighbouring countries Serbia, Montenegro, Kosovo, Albania and Macedonia) cannot be missed by any traveller. Contrary to that, the public space of Sarajevo was mainly characterized and informed by the presence and activities of NGOs and actors from Western European, North American and Japanese representatives of the “International Community” (međunarodna zajednica) in the precedent post-war decade. These actors seem to have given way to their Arab and Turkish counterparts, which has contributed, amongst others, to the emergence of the commonplace of the “Islamization of Sarajevo” (islamizacija Sarajeva) in the Bosnian street1.

2Whether in the streets of Skopje (Macedonia), Sarajevo (Bosnia-Herzegovina), Novi Pazar (Serbian Sandžak), Rožaje (Montenegrin Sandžak), or Prizren (Kosovo), where I spent two months of field-studies (November-December 2014) prior to my long sojourns in Istanbul (January 2015-October 2015) and Sarajevo (November 2015-September 2016): Turkish banks, Turkish language courses, Turkish tourists and travel agencies, restored Ottoman mosques, bridges, dervish lodges (tekije tekke), international schools and universities under Turkish auspices, mobility programs, the rising number of Turkish cultural institutes, the numerous popular Turkish soap operas on Balkanic TV screens (like the notorious Suleyman the Magnificent), cannot be missed even by short-term visitors. A deeper look into the narratives transmitted by high-ranked Turkish politicians and religious authorities on their visits to bridge, mosque, shrine-openings or commemorative festivities like the annual Srebrenica commemoration of the July 1995 genocide against Bosnian Muslims/Bosniaks, reveals the centrality of topics such as the joint Ottoman heritage (Osmanlı mirası), the lost ancestors’ lands (ecdadlarımızın/atalarımızın kaybedilmiş toprakları), Muslim victimhood and martyrdom (şehitlik), security promises and solidarity by the Turkish state (Turkey appears here as the state of the ensar), kinship (kardeş ülke/şehir/belediye), homeland (memleket) and motherland (anavatan).

  • 2  “Yugosphere” is a notion coined by Tim Judah. Cf. Judah, Tim: Good news from the Western Balkans: (...)
  • 3  Tanasković, Darko (2010): Neoosmanizam. Povratak Turske na Balkan [Neo-Ottomanizam. Turkey’s Retur (...)
  • 4  IN MEMORIAM – Posljednji intervju profesorice Lamije Hadžiosmanović za STAV: Neoosmanizam ne posto (...)

3Turkey’s relatively recent and rapidly spreading cultural diplomacy in Bosnia and its neighborhood has incited an often emotional and heated debate in the public of the “Yugosphere”2. For instance, Darko Tanasković, Serbian orientalist and former ambassador of Serbia to Turkey, defended in a number of TV debates and other public statements his publication on Neo-Ottomanism, claiming that Turkey’s foreign policy was guided by the revisionist principle of Neo-Ottomanism, accompanying the re-Islamization of Turkey’s previously secularized political scene3. On the other side, his Bosnian colleague Hajrudin Somun, as well as many prominent Bosnian Turkologists and Islamicists, repudiated Tanasković’s claim as groundless and prejudiced4.

  • 5  Rucker-Chang, Sunnie: The Turkish Connection: Neo-Ottoman Influence in Post-Dayton Bosnia, in: Jou (...)

4Unsurprisingly, the remarkable phenomenon of renewed Turkish cultural influence, characterized not only by formal cultural diplomats’ activities, such as numerous renovations of Ottoman bridges, mosques or Sufi shrines, but also by the veritable boom of Turkish soap operas, has attracted much scholarly interest5.

5In this article, I will tie in with the topic of Turkish cultural diplomacy in the Balkans, but extend the research interest by the question how and to what extent the significant and undoubtable rise of discoursive running to and fro between Sarajevo and Ankara was and is informed by the topic of forced Muslim migration of European Muslims from the formerly Ottoman Balkans to Turkey and the aligned memory of loss. By doing so, I will offer an overview of my ongoing, advanced doctoral dissertation, and present selected samples from my field studies that I have spent in Turkey, Bosnia and the area in-between from 2014‑2017. I hope to contribute to a deeper understanding of how different actors on different levels are involved in the symbolical negotiations between the Balkans and Turkey. Thus, not only official cultural diplomats’ views will be taken into account, but also post-migrant (muhacirs’) positions and their Balkanic relatives – in what I shall call a communicative Bosniak-Turkish figuration.

Theoretical and methodological challenge: the space

6However, before delineating the central topics of Turkish-Bosniak “cultural negotiations”, some theoretical and methodological challenges need to be addressed. To approach my decision to apply the notion of a communicative Turkish-Bosniak figuration in a cosmopoliticized space of actions, some of the results of the existing cognate scholarship that this work can build upon shall be readdressed, as well as their most important gaps. The existing scholarship relevant to this study can be allocated to three broader fields: first, migration studies, secondly, literature on public diplomacy and cultural diplomacy, and thirdly – and closely related to the other two realms – literature on the notion of transnationalism with its inherent pitfalls of methodological nationalism.

  • 6  Pačariz, Sabina (2016): The migrations of Bosniaks to Turkey from 1945 to 1974. The case of Sandža (...)
  • 7  Pezo, Edvin (2013): Zwangsmigration in Friedenszeiten? Jugoslawische Migrationspolitik und die Aus (...)
  • 8  For a more detailed literature review cf. Schad, Thomas: From Muslims into Turks? Consensual demog (...)
  • 9  Cf. Bandžović, Safet (2014): Bošnjaci i Turska: deosmanizacija Balkana i muhadžirski pokreti u XX (...)
  • 10  Cf. Baklacıoğlu, Nurcan Özgür: Dual Citizenship, Extraterritorial Elections and National Policies: (...)
  • 11  Baklacıoğlu, Nurcan Özgür: Between neo-Ottomanist kin policy in the Balkans and Transnational Kin (...)

7As for the topic of forced Muslim migrations to Turkey, many researchers on former Yugoslavia, like Sabina Pačariz6 or Edvin Pezo7, mainly focalize the country of origin – former Yugoslavia – or Turkey as the destiny8. Others, like Sarajevo-based historian Safet Bandžović, or Turkish scholar Nurcan Özgür Baklacıoğlu, do contextualize the legacies of those forced migrations in the present-day relations between Turkey and the Balkans, without necessarly taking into account sources from both countries. Either are these relations due to persistent, kinship-based networks, they argue, or to the topic of the shared Ottoman cultural heritage or both9. Notably Baklacıoğlu has drawn her attention to the context between migrations to Turkey and the emerging extraterritorial effects, such as dual citizenship and transnational elections10, and Turkey’s kin policy as a concomitant of the recent stress of the Ottoman past in Turkey11. The latter perspective shall be deepened in this study, by asking how history is not merely used as an explanation for the present “cultural intimacy” – but rather as a resource and capital for legitimation.

  • 12  Cf. Kaya, Ayhan and Ayşe Tecmen: The Role of Common Cultural Heritage in External Promotion of Mod (...)
  • 13  Öktem, Kerem: Global Diyanet and Multiple Networks: Turkey’s New Presence in the Balkans, in: Jour (...)
  • 14  Eisenstadt, Shnuel N.: Multiple Modernities, in: Daedalus 1/129 (2000), 1-29.

8That history cannot be used as a simple explanatory causality for the recent popularity of the Ottoman past and the “forefathers’ lost lands in the Balkans” has been pointed out, amongst others, by Ayhan Kaya and Ayşe Tecmen’s timely research on the first years of the Yunus Emre Cultural Centres’ performance abroad12, or by Kerem Öktem’s study on the significance of religious networks13, to name but a few. The authors claim that other contemporary factors on the regional and global level, such as rival trends in global political Islam and the epochal changes of the early 1990s, have played a significant role in Turkey’s recent Balkan opening. Yet, while Kaya and Tecmen explain Turkey’s unprecedented, proactive drive in cultural diplomacy with Shmuel Eisenstadt’s paradigm of multiple modernities14 – as an original Turkish redaction of modernity – I argue that the sheer speed and intensity of Turkey’s appearance in the Balkan public can’t be sufficiently explained without considering the share and the role of the new communicative technologies that the Digital Revolution has given birth to. This asks for yet another revision of the notion of modernity.

  • 15  For a discussion of methodological nationalism in the social sciences, cf. Beck, Ulrich and Natan (...)
  • 16  Noiriel, Gérard (2001) : État, nation et immigration. Vers une histoire du pouvoir. Paris : Gallim (...)
  • 17  Faist, Thomas/Fauser, Margit/Reisenauer, Eveline (2014): Das Transnationale in der Migration: Eine (...)

9These technological innovations, like the internationalization of the TV-market and the internet with its Online Social Networks (OSN) transcend national borders with ease – unless they aren’t obstructed by censorship. Therefore, the topic of transnationalism and its inherent methodological nationalism deserves discussion, both from a theoretical and practical perspective15. As Gérard Noiriel has argued convincingly, historiography of the nation-state has been negligent of migration altogether for a long time, for migration has been perceived as a deviance from the “norm” of the nation-state16; The accelerated course of globalization has forced social scientists to fundamentally question this bias, one of the results being the concept of transnationalism. But can transnationalism offer a suitable answer? Transnationalism, as Thomas Faist and others have suggested, seems to offer a suitable perspective on what happens between different nation-states, eventually paving the way to new conceptualizations of space, such as “transnational social spaces” and “cross-border activities17”. However, the problem with transnationalism is that it presumes the existence and the agency of nation-states; while this preassumption might still be valid for Turkey’s powerful cultural diplomats with their apparently nationalist symbology, even transnationalism’s subtle assumption of an inherent nation-state as-an-actor offers a very problematic perspective on Bosnia and Bosniaks: de facto, Bosnia is not a functioning nation-state for Bosnia, and neither can Bosnia be addressed as the Bosniaks’ nation-state for Bosnia, which is, de jure, the shared and contested home of three constitutive peoples (Bosniaks, Croats and Serbs). Moreover, Bosniaks do also live in Western countries, in Turkey, in the Serbian and Montenegrin Sandžak, in Kosovo, and in Macedonia, from where they contribute and “speak back” in the interplay of Bosniak-Turkish cultural diplomacy.

  • 18  Cf. Ulrich Beck (2016): The Metamorphosis of the World. Cambridge/Malden: Polity Press.

10Thus, we are confronted with a threefold predicament: first, the history of forced Muslim migrations (muhacirlik) and the legacy of shared religion plays a significant role in the legitimacy of Turkey’s position as the Balkan Muslims’ “safe haven” – while it can’t sufficiently explain the emergence of the current discoursive interplay, which is also conditioned by other important factors on a global level. Secondly, the actors of the figuration at play can’t be framed nationally, which calls for alternative conceptualizations of space. And finally, the concept of transnationalism appears unsuitable as an answer, for the asymetry between a strong Turkish nation-state vis-à-vis a quasi non-existent Bosniak one. This situation is, perhaps, best described in the words of late sociologist Ulrich Beck’s last seminar on the “Metamorphosis of the World”, where he had voiced that the old institutions of the nation-state are still working, while they constantly fail, at once. As Beck continues, the world “in metamorphosis” is characterized by the spin-offs of the Digital Revolution and the concomitant emergence of cosmopoliticized spaces of action18.

  • 19  Elias, Norbert (2014): Was ist Soziologie? Bad Langensalza: Beltz Juventa and Baur, Nina and Ernst (...)
  • 20  URL: https://www.kofi.uni-bremen.de/en/approach/
  • 21  URL: https://www.kofi.uni-bremen.de/en/approach/
  • 22  URL : https://www.kofi.uni-bremen.de/en/approach/

11But how to procede in practice, and how to grasp actors and topics of Bosniak-Turkish cultural diplomacy, then? Drawing from Norbert Elias’ figurational sociology and his notion of the figuration – seen as a network of human interdependencies, similar to Noiriel’s socio-histoire19 – a modified notion of the figuration seems most suitable, as offered by Bremen University’s research cluster Communicative Figurations. The latter approach fully takes into account the significance of contemporary media communication, by characterizing a communicative figuration as “a certain constellation of actors that can be regarded as its structural basis: a network of individuals being interrelated and communicating with each other20. Secondly, “each communicative figuration has dominating frames of relevance that serve to guide its constituting practices. These frames define the ‘topic’ and therefore character of a communicative figuration as a social domain21. Finally, “we are dealing with specific communicative practices that are interwoven with other social practices. In their composition, these practices typically draw on and are entangled with a media ensemble22.” I shall sketch in a more concrete way the shape of the constellation of actors, its dominating frames (“topic”), and their medialized practices in the following section.

The threefold agents and topics of the discoursive running to and fro between Sarajevo and Istanbul

12In my thesis, I draw the empirical material from three different realms of actors, topics and practices. For reasons of length, I will sketch the actors shortly, to continue with illustrating samples from the dominant topics in the subsequent section.

  • 23  Schad, Thomas: The Rediscovery of the Balkans? A Bosniak-Turkish Figuration in the Third Space bet (...)
  • 24  Davutoğlu, Ahmet (2014): Stratejik Derinlik. Türkiye’nin Uluslararası Konumu. Istanbul: Küre Yayın (...)

13On the first level of everyday cultural diplomacy, I interviewed and portayed actors from the public in Bosnia, Turkey and in the area in-between. As for Turkey, I focalized Bosniak migrants, post-migrants, and their homeland associations in Istanbul’s districts of Bayrampaşa, Pendik and in Izmir23. In the Balkans, I visited the migrants’ homelands and “relatives” (both corporal and figurative relatives) in Macedonia, in the Sandžak area between Montenegro and Serbia, and moreover, I used a one-year stay in Bosnia’s capital (2015‑2016) for a thick description of the urban space of Sarajevo and how Turkey’s cultural diplomacy is perceived there. Secondly, I focalized cultural diplomacy in the medialized popular culture, such as the perception of Turkish TV-series in Sarajevo’s everyday speech, in the social media, as well as Bosniak homeland associations’ text productions, symbols and activities. On a third level, I evaluated official and formal cultural diplomats’ text production, as delivered in their publications, speeches, and mission statements on their respective homepages. Most of the latter actors are orchestrated either by the Presidency of the Republic of Turkey, the Office of the Prime Minister of Turkey, or by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs – such as the Presidency for Turks Abroad and Related Communities (YTB), the Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency (TİKA), the Yunus Emre Institutes, and others. An eminent official cultural diplomat is the former chief advisor to the Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, consequently Minister of Foreign Affairs, and finally Prime Minister, Ahmet Davutoğlu, who can be described as a “playwright24”of official Turkish cultural diplomacy.

  • 25  Davutoğlu celebrates Eid in Bosnia and Herzegovina, calls Sarajevo home, in: Today’s Zaman (30. Au (...)

14To interrelate and triangulate this heterogeneous group of actors does not mean, of course, that they all agree with each other or even share the same worldviews. Nevertheless, there are three reoccurring topics that all actors negotiate in the course of their cultural diplomacy: religion, kinship and culture/civilization. Pars pro toto, they are represented in the following quotation of then Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu: “In our traditions, we celebrate Eid at home. This is what I am doing; I celebrate the Eid with my family in Sarajevo. Bosnia is our home and Bosnians are our family members.”25

The invocation of the shared religion as a central topic

  • 26  Schad, Thomas: From Muslims into Turks? Consensual demographic engineering between interwar Yugosl (...)

15The constant invocation of the topic of the figuration’s adherents’ shared religion, Islam, reaches back to the earlier sociogenesis of the figuration in Ottoman times, when Muslims were considered to be members of the Islamic ummah (ümmet in Turkish), whereas Jews and Christians of different denominations were members of their respective millet. In the era of nationalization, this concept was conserved, yet substantialy modified and turned into the “confessional nation” accross the post-Ottoman Balkans and Turkey; this lead to the massive processes of ethnic homogenization along religious lines, including all kind of violent, dissimilative and assimilative practices for the sake of national homogenization, like “population exchanges”, forced migration, language nationalism, so-called “ethnic cleansing” and genocide26. In the course of these migrations, millions of Muslims from the former Ottoman lands of the Balkans migrated to Turkey, amongst them Albanian and Slavic speaking Muslims from the areas where Turkey’s Bosniaks originate from.

16Besides the other prominent notion of the Mübadil, the exchangees of the Turkish-Greek population exchange, these Muslim immigrants were called Muhacir.

  • 27  This sentence can be found on the walls of homeland associations, on their homepages, and in the p (...)

17Etymologically, the Turkish words Muhacirlik and Muhacir (bosn. Muhadžirluk/Muhadžir), a loan from Arabic Muhāǧirūn (pl., the Emigrants; English: Muhajirun), roughly translates as “Muslim Refugee(-ness)”. In the Qur’anic context and in other early Islamic sources, the Muhāǧirūn were the first Muslims, who migrated together with the prophet Muhammad, from Mecca to Yathrib (henceforth known as Medina), were they found safety from the hostile environment in Mecca; the process of migration from the dangerous place Mecca to the safe place Medina, simultaneously the beginning of the Hijri calendar, is called Hiǧra (Hicret in Turkish, Hidžret in Bosnian). Not only the emigrants themselves are crucial to the narrative of Muhacirlik, but also the role of “the helpers” – al-Anṣār in the Arabic Qur’anic text, and Ensar in Turkish: those who welcomed the prophet and the first migrant Muslims in the city of Medina. In modern contexts of “demographic homogenization” – like in the case of the partition of India and the nationalization of the Balkans – Muslims are sometimes denominated (and can call themselves) Muhacir when they flee a place that is dangerous or hostile to Muslims, to seek safety at a place that is favourably disposed towards Muslims, and/or Muslim-dominated. In the given word usage of Muhacirlik in the context of Muslim migrations from previously Ottoman lands in Europe – old Rumelia, now under non-Muslim dominance of the newly established nation-state-regimes – the post-Ottoman Balkans count for the dangerous place, and Turkey, as a predominantly Muslim-inhabited state, for the safe place. In the Turkish context, muhacirlik signifies much more than a theological concept: it forms a chapter of the collective memory. Millions of muhacirs, amongst them the overwhelming part of the founding fathers of the Turkish Republic, have shaped the institutions of the young nation-state in a sustained manner: even Mustafa Kemal [Atatürk], originally from Aegean Macedonia – is known for his words “Muhacirler kaybedilmiş toprakların aziz hatıralarıdır [The muhajirun are the dear memento of our lost lands27].”

18One of the most prominent examples of national institutions shaped by text of muhacirlik is the Turkish Settlement Law from 1934 (İskan Kanunu No. 2510), which regulated questions of immigration to Turkey and the migrants’ naturalization, settlement, and assimilation into Turkish culture. The law was valid until 2009, with few amendments. In the text of the law, one could conclude, Muhacirlik is literally acculturated:

  • 28  Translated by the author from the original text in: İskân Kanunu No. 2510 (14 June 1934/7.

“Accepted are individual settlers of Turkish origin (Türk soyundan) or nomadic individuals who want to enter the country from abroad with the aim of settling in Turkey, together with settlers or nomadic individuals and tribes which are of Turkish origin, as well as those settlers who are connected to Turkish culture (Türk kültürüne bağlı), and wish to enter on condition of obtaining the opinion of the Ministry of Interior (and on its command), on condition of obtaining the opinion of the Ministry of Health and Welfare, by virtue of this Act and by order of the Ministry of Health and Social Assistance. These [individuals] are called refugees (Muhacir28)”.

  • 29  Yılmaz, Mustafa: “Coğrafya Kaderdir”: Mültecilik/Muhacirlik, Sürgün ve Göç Üzerine Etik, Estetik v (...)
  • 30  The name of this dernek – the only one in Turkey which still includes “Yugoslavia” in its name – a (...)
  • 31  Borančić, Šefkija (2005): Muhadžiri. Skopje/Istanbul: Kulturni Centar Bošnjaka u Republici Makedon (...)
  • 32  Redžović Bajraktar, Bećir (N.D.): Od Biševa u Sandžaku do seobe u Tursku [From Biševo in Sandžak t (...)
  • 33  Azemović, Zaim/Škrijelj, Redžep: Plač muhadžirskih pisama, in: Rožajski Zbornik, Godina XI, Broj 1 (...)
  • 34  URL: http://www.muhacirinsesi.com/

19Yet, it is important to keep in mind that the usage of the word muhacir (and its popular cacographies, such as macer by muhacirs in Thrace, e.g.) in everyday speech in Turkey varies with other, even more common notions, such as mülteci, göç (göçmen, göç eden), sığınmacı – not only depending on the social and religious situatedness of the respective interlocutor, cultural diplomat, medium – but also across time29. My Bosniak interlocutors in Istanbul often referred to themselves as Yugoslavya göçmenleri (migrants from Yugoslavia) when asked about their experiences upon their arrival in Turkey in the 1960s and 1970s, and one of their present day homeland associations, the Yugoslavya Karadağ Göçmenleri Sosyal Dayanışma Kültür Derneği in Bayrampaşa (founded in 2013), still bears the reminder of having come from Yugoslavia as a göçmen – thus, as a refugee, but without the religious connotation of muhacir30. On the other hand, the notion of muhacir is used by muhacirs themselves, as in the novel Muhadžiri by the Bosniak muhacir Šefkija Borančić from the Republic of Macedonia (where his family stranded on their way to Turkey), published as a cross-border activity by the homeland associations Bosna Sancak Derneği (abbr.) from Bayrampaşa and the Kulturni Centar Bošnjaka from Skopje31; in the novelized autobiography of Bećir Redžović Bajraktar [Bekir Bayraktar], a Bayrampaşa-based muhacir originating from Rožaje in the Montenegrin Sandžak32; or in the local history magazine Rožajski Zbornik, penned by the Sandžak intellectuals Zaim Azemović and Redžep Škrijelj from Rožaje33. It also appears in a sizeable number of media, such as the web portal muhacirinsesi, to name only one example34.

  • 35  A speech by RTE on Alija Izetbegović can be retrieved from Youtube: Aliya « Bosna Osmanlı emanetid (...)
  • 36  Like most Turkish TV series, “Aliya” can be watched on YouTube, where it was shared by the user TR (...)

20As for the Bosnian context, the muhacir-ensar-binary as a trope of migration from an unsafe to a safe place, encapsulating the motif of the helpers and the helped, with Turkey figuring as the safe haven (“Medina”) for Bosnia’s endangered Muslims (Bosniaks), prominently reappears in a reoccuring commonplace in the Bosnian and Turkish media: Bosnia’s first (Bosniak) president Alija Izetbegović, on his deathbed, reportedly “gave” Bosnia and Bosniaks into Turkey’s present-day President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s (RTE) custody (“emanet etti”/“u amanet ostavio”). Both Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Alija Izetbegović’s son and Bosniak member of the tripartite Bosnian Presidency, Bakir Izetbegović, repeat this story every now and then when the Bosniak-Turkish relations are exhibited35. The person Alija Izetbegović is also the subject of a recent Turkish TV series produced by TRT, the production of which was officially announced on the occasion of last year’s (2017) annual commemoration of the victims of the Srebrenica genocide from 11.7.199536.

  • 37  Ensar’dan geçen yollar AKP’ye çıkıyor: Ensar Vakfı’nın ilişkilerinin haritası ve analizi, in: Birg (...)
  • 38  Beykoz’da Ensar ve Muhacir iftarda buluştu, Ensar Vakfı, 1. Temmuz 2016, http://www.ensar.org/beyk (...)
  • 39  I borrowed the approach to semantically fragment historiographic narratives from Hayden White’s Me (...)
  • 40  Like Ahmet Davutoğlu’s (untranslated) Strategic Depth: Davutoğlu, Ahmet (2014): Stratejik Derinlik (...)

21Finally, the ensar-muhacir-trope has been re-popularized in most recent years by the high profile Ensar Vakfı, an Islamic inspired foundation mainly active in the field of education, known in Turkish public for its proximity to the AKP-government (as well as a sex abuse scandal37). The war in neighbouring Syria and the fact that Turkey is host to millions of Syrian (and other predominantly Muslim) refugees has resulted in a re-translation of muhacirlik on numerous occasions where “helpers” offer their assistance to the “helped”, war-victims, such as the increasingly popular open-air iftar-charities in Istanbul’s streets demonstrate38. Tropes of muhacirlik39 – amongst them the ubiquitous metaphor of the bridge, as well as kinship-metaphors like brotherhood, heritage, relatives, ancestry – are equally structuring key documents of Turkish foreign policy40 and the publications of cultural and public diplomats active in the Balkans and in Turkey, which cannot be displayed here in length.

Conclusion

22As the selection of examples presented in this article could show, national boundaries are transcended by Bosniak-Turkish cultural diplomats’ discoursive running to and fro between Sarajevo and Ankara, largely enabled by the use of Online Social Networks like Youtube and the increased mobility between Bosnia and Turkey. This makes the Bosniak-Turkish figuration a primary example of a cosmopoliticized space of action. To readdress the original question which role history plays in that discoursive interplay, it is obvious that the memory of loss, forced migration, and – in the case of present-day Bosnia – the recent trauma of genocide and victimhood for being Muslims play a crucial role. Yet, the course of history as a natural “chain of events”, eventually interrupted by the pre-1990s and pre-AKP period, cannot explain the relatively recent intensity of Bosniak-Turkish relations. The “agency” of history is rather to be found in the fragmented stories, such as the trope of the helpers and the helped, the Muhacir and the Ensar, which are adapted and made sense of in the contemporary context.

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Notes

1  In 2016, the Bosnian journalist Emina žuna delivered a detailed overview of the discourse of the “Islamization of Sarajevo” by well-known Bosnian public intellectuals like Esad Duraković, Nenad Veličković, Jasmina Čaušević, Jakob Finci, Tarik Haverić and others. The main topic in the discourse is the increased number of Arab tourists and land acquisition, and to a less degree the Turkish presence. Žuna, Emina: Islamizacija Sarajeva – između mita i stvarnosti, in: Tacno.net (7.10.2016). URL: http://www.tacno.net/uncategorized/islamizacija-sarajeva-izmedu-mita-i-stvarnosti/ (last retrieved: 10.5.2018).

2  “Yugosphere” is a notion coined by Tim Judah. Cf. Judah, Tim: Good news from the Western Balkans: Yugoslavia is dead long live the Yugosphere, in: LSEE Papers on South Eastern Europe (2009), URL: http://www.lse.ac.uk/LSEE-Research-on-South-Eastern-Europe/Assets/Documents/Publications/Paper-Series-on-SEE/Yugosphere.pdf (last retrieved: 25.7.2018).

3  Tanasković, Darko (2010): Neoosmanizam. Povratak Turske na Balkan [Neo-Ottomanizam. Turkey’s Return to the Balkans]. Belgrade: JP Službeni Glasnik.

4  IN MEMORIAM – Posljednji intervju profesorice Lamije Hadžiosmanović za STAV: Neoosmanizam ne postoji, in: Stav (9.5.2016), URL: https://www.faktor.ba/vijest/in-memoriam-posljednji-intervju-profesorice-lamije-hadziosmanovic-za-stav-neoosmanizam-ne-postoji-foto-161537 (last retrieved: 25.7.2018).

5  Rucker-Chang, Sunnie: The Turkish Connection: Neo-Ottoman Influence in Post-Dayton Bosnia, in: Journal of Muslim Minority Affairs, 34/2 (2014), pp. 152-164, URL: https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/pdf/10.1080/13602004.2014.911586 (last retrieved: 7.3.2015).

6  Pačariz, Sabina (2016): The migrations of Bosniaks to Turkey from 1945 to 1974. The case of Sandžak. Sarajevo: Center for Advanced Studies.

7  Pezo, Edvin (2013): Zwangsmigration in Friedenszeiten? Jugoslawische Migrationspolitik und die Auswanderung von Muslimen in die Türkei (1918 bis 1966). München: Oldenbourg Verlag.

8  For a more detailed literature review cf. Schad, Thomas: From Muslims into Turks? Consensual demographic engineering between interwar Yugoslavia and Turkey, Journal of Genocide Research, 18:4 (2016), pp. 427-446.

9  Cf. Bandžović, Safet (2014): Bošnjaci i Turska: deosmanizacija Balkana i muhadžirski pokreti u XX stoljeću. Sarajevo: Author’s edition and Baklacıoğlu, Nurcan Özgür: Yugoslavya’dan Türkiye’ye Göçlerde Sayılar, Koşullar ve Tartışmalar [Figures, Conditions and Discussions in Migrations from Yugoslavia to Turkey], in: Erdoğan, M. Murat and Ayhan Kaya (Eds.) (2015): Türkiye’nin Göç Tarihi. 14. Yüzyıldan 21. Yüzyıla Türkiye’ye Göçler [Turkey’s History of Migration. Migrations to Turkey from the 14th to the 21st Century]. Istanbul: İstanbul Bilgi Üniversitesi Yayınları, pp. 191-220.

10  Cf. Baklacıoğlu, Nurcan Özgür: Dual Citizenship, Extraterritorial Elections and National Policies: Turkish Dual Citizens in the Bulgarian-Turkish Political Sphere, in: Ieda, Osamu (Ed.) (2006): Beyond Sovereignty: From Status Law to Transnational Citizenship? 21st Century COE Program Slavic Eurasian Studies No. 9. Sapporo: Slavic Research Center/Hokkaido University, pp. 319-358.

11  Baklacıoğlu, Nurcan Özgür: Between neo-Ottomanist kin policy in the Balkans and Transnational Kin Economics in the EU, in: Journal on Ethnopolitics and Minority Issues in Europe, Vol. 14, No 3 (2015), pp. 47-72.

12  Cf. Kaya, Ayhan and Ayşe Tecmen: The Role of Common Cultural Heritage in External Promotion of Modern Turkey: Yunus Emre Cultural Centres. Working Paper No: 4 EU/4/2011, Bilgi University Istanbul (European Institute Jean Monnet Center Center of Excellence), URL: http://eu.bilgi.edu.tr/media/files/working-paper4_2.pdf (last retrieved: 26.1.2015).

13  Öktem, Kerem: Global Diyanet and Multiple Networks: Turkey’s New Presence in the Balkans, in: Journal of Muslims in Europe, Volume 1, Issue 1 (2012), pp. 27-58.

14  Eisenstadt, Shnuel N.: Multiple Modernities, in: Daedalus 1/129 (2000), 1-29.

15  For a discussion of methodological nationalism in the social sciences, cf. Beck, Ulrich and Natan Sznaider: Unpacking cosmopolitanism for the social sciences: a research agenda, in: The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 57, Issue 1 (2006), 1-23.

16  Noiriel, Gérard (2001) : État, nation et immigration. Vers une histoire du pouvoir. Paris : Gallimard, p. 103.

17  Faist, Thomas/Fauser, Margit/Reisenauer, Eveline (2014): Das Transnationale in der Migration: Eine Einführung. Bad Langensalza: Beltz Juventa.

18  Cf. Ulrich Beck (2016): The Metamorphosis of the World. Cambridge/Malden: Polity Press.

19  Elias, Norbert (2014): Was ist Soziologie? Bad Langensalza: Beltz Juventa and Baur, Nina and Ernst, Stefanie: Towards a process-oriented methodology : modern social science research methods and Norbert Elias’s figurational sociology, in : The Sociological Review 2011, pp. 117‑139.

20  URL: https://www.kofi.uni-bremen.de/en/approach/

21  URL: https://www.kofi.uni-bremen.de/en/approach/

22  URL : https://www.kofi.uni-bremen.de/en/approach/

23  Schad, Thomas: The Rediscovery of the Balkans? A Bosniak-Turkish Figuration in the Third Space between Istanbul and Sarajevo. Working Paper No 8 (December 2015), Bilgi University Istanbul (European Institute Jean Monnet Center Center of Excellence), URL: https://eu.bilgi.edu.tr/media/files/WORKING_PAPER_10-180518-2.pdf (last retrieved: 16.12.2015).

24  Davutoğlu, Ahmet (2014): Stratejik Derinlik. Türkiye’nin Uluslararası Konumu. Istanbul: Küre Yayınları.

25  Davutoğlu celebrates Eid in Bosnia and Herzegovina, calls Sarajevo home, in: Today’s Zaman (30. August 2011), URL: http://www.todayszaman.com/diplomacy_davutoglu-celebrates-eid-in-bosnia-and-herzegovina-calls-sarajevo-home_255359.html (last retrieved : 22.3.2015).

26  Schad, Thomas: From Muslims into Turks? Consensual demographic engineering between interwar Yugoslavia and Turkey, in: Journal of Genocide Research, 18: 4 (2016), 427-446. URL: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/14623528.2016.1228634 (last retrieved : 31.5.2017).

27  This sentence can be found on the walls of homeland associations, on their homepages, and in the public discourse in the media, as in this article on Izmir’s population of Balkan origin: Kaybedilmiş toprakların cefakar insanları, Yeni Asır, 2 octobre 2014, http://www.yeniasir.com.tr/yasam/2014/10/03/kaybedilmis-topraklarin-cefakar-insanlari (last retrieved: 27 january 2017). Often, “dear memento” is replaced with “national memento” (milli hatıralar).

28  Translated by the author from the original text in: İskân Kanunu No. 2510 (14 June 1934/7.

Teşrinievvel 1336), Resmî Gazete, No. 2733, Yayımlandığı Düstur: Tertip 3, Cilt 15, Article 3, available at: http://www.resmigazete.gov.tr/arsiv/2733.pdf. Retrieved 11. September 2016. Quoted from Schad, Thomas (2016): From Muslims into Turks (ibid), p. 433.

29  Yılmaz, Mustafa: “Coğrafya Kaderdir”: Mültecilik/Muhacirlik, Sürgün ve Göç Üzerine Etik, Estetik ve Psiko-politik Bir Değerlendirme, in: Haksöz Dergisi, Sayı : 296 (15 November 2015).

30  The name of this dernek – the only one in Turkey which still includes “Yugoslavia” in its name – also reflects the rivaling identity-discourses in the Montenegrin Sandžak, where a majority of the Slavic speaking Muslims identifies as Bosniaks, whereas a minority group retrieves its identity claims from Yugoslavia’s Muslim nation (muslimanski narod), represented by the organization Matica Muslimanska Crne Gore. In this article on muhacirinsesi, the members of the association are visited by Bayrampaşa’s AKP-mayor Atila Aydıner, informing the members about the municipality’s activities in Montenegro. İrfan Sancaklı (Kurpejovic): Başkan Aydıner Karadağlılar Derneğinde, 08 Aralık 2013, URL: http://www.muhacirinsesi.com/haber/sanat/baskan-aydiner-karadaglilar-derneginde/764.html, (last retrieved: 25 july 2017).

31  Borančić, Šefkija (2005): Muhadžiri. Skopje/Istanbul: Kulturni Centar Bošnjaka u Republici Makedoniji/Bayrampaşa Bosna Sancak Kültür Yardımlaşma Derneği.

32  Redžović Bajraktar, Bećir (N.D.): Od Biševa u Sandžaku do seobe u Tursku [From Biševo in Sandžak to the emigration to Turkey]. Istanbul: Author’s Edition.

33  Azemović, Zaim/Škrijelj, Redžep: Plač muhadžirskih pisama, in: Rožajski Zbornik, Godina XI, Broj 11, (2002), p. 99‑115.

34  URL: http://www.muhacirinsesi.com/

35  A speech by RTE on Alija Izetbegović can be retrieved from Youtube: Aliya « Bosna Osmanlı emanetidir, koruyun ve sahip çıkın » Başbakan Erdoğan, URL: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0GUThKRt9Es, published by seribaz on 22 october 2013 (last retrieved: 13 may 2018).

36  Like most Turkish TV series, “Aliya” can be watched on YouTube, where it was shared by the user TRT Televizyon: Alija 1.Bölüm, URL: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RHh8ZMur4ZU, published by TRT Televizyon on 30 january 2018 (last retrieved on 14 may 2018).

37  Ensar’dan geçen yollar AKP’ye çıkıyor: Ensar Vakfı’nın ilişkilerinin haritası ve analizi, in: Birgün (19. April 2016), URL: http://www.birgun.net/haber-detay/ensar-dan-gecen-yollar-akp-ye-cikiyor-ensar-vakfi-niniliskilerinin-

haritasi-ve-analizi-109527.html (last retrieved: 25 July 2017).

38  Beykoz’da Ensar ve Muhacir iftarda buluştu, Ensar Vakfı, 1. Temmuz 2016, http://www.ensar.org/beykozda-ensar-ve-muhacir-iftarda-bulustu_H986.html (retrieved: 1st december 2016); İsmail Ersan: Muhacir ve ensardan etkilenip “yardım köprüsü” kurdu. Hürriyet, 9 Şubat 2015. URL: http://www.hurriyet.com.tr/muhacir-ve-ensardan-etkilenip-yardim-koprusu-kurdu-37058501 (retrieved: 25 april 2017); ’Sur’daki Muhacirlere Ensar Olalım Kampanyası’, Anadolu Ajansı, 26 january 2016, URL: http:// aa.com.tr/tr/yasam/surdaki-muhacirlere-ensar-olalim-kampanyasi/510682 (retrieved: 22 july 2017).

39  I borrowed the approach to semantically fragment historiographic narratives from Hayden White’s Metahistory, cf. White, Hayden (1975): Metahistory. The historical imagination in nineteenth century in Europe. Baltimore and London: The Johns Hopkins University Press.

40  Like Ahmet Davutoğlu’s (untranslated) Strategic Depth: Davutoğlu, Ahmet (2014): Stratejik Derinlik. Türkiye’nin Uluslararası Konumu. Istanbul: Küre Yayınları.

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Thomas Schad, « A Communicative Figuration Between Sarajevo and Istanbul in the Course of Gentrificating Turkey’s Post-Ottoman Hinterland »Anatoli, 9 | 2018, 127-139.

Référence électronique

Thomas Schad, « A Communicative Figuration Between Sarajevo and Istanbul in the Course of Gentrificating Turkey’s Post-Ottoman Hinterland »Anatoli [En ligne], 9 | 2018, mis en ligne le 05 décembre 2020, consulté le 13 avril 2021. URL : http://journals.openedition.org/anatoli/702 ; DOI : https://doi.org/10.4000/anatoli.702

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Auteur

Thomas Schad

Thomas Schad is currently a doctoral fellow at the Berlin Graduate School Muslim Cultures and Societies and affiliated with Humboldt Universität Berlin’s Department of Southeast European History. After a two-year stay as a project coordinator in Bosnia-Herzegowina, where he was working for German and local NGOs (2000‑2002), he decided to study East-European Studies, Bosnian/Croatian/Serbian and Political Science. The main focus of his studies was the history of the post-Ottoman Balkans and Turkey. He has spent one academic year at Istanbul University (2006‑2007) and graduated from Freie Universität Berlin and Humboldt Universität Berlin in 2011 (Magister Artium). He published a chapter of his M.A. thesis as an article in the Journal of Genocide Studies. From 2009‑2013, he was employed at the International Office of Freie Universität Berlin, to finally commence his doctoral research on cultural diplomacy between Bosnia and Turkey in October 2013. For his research, he spent one year each in Turkey and Bosnia (2015‑2016), and a sample of his research outcome was published as a working paper at Istanbul Bilgi University’s European Institute. He is a member of aMiMo at IFEA-Istanbul and author of the Blog Dunyalook, URL : https://thomasschad.wordpress.com/

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