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Urban Muslim Migrants in Istanbul
Identity and Trauma Among Balkan Immigrants. Library of Modern Middle East Studies
Some fled following World War II, and travelled east by train to Istanbul with no more than a suitcase. And yet 50 years later, one of their migrant associations was second only to the Red Crescent in providing aid to the urban poor of Istanbul.Frances Trix analyses the development of the oldest such association, originally founded to welcome new migrants as they arrived from Skopje after World War II, and shows how Islam is central to its structure and practices. Her wide-ranging study variously focuses on its leadership, the growing role of women in the organisation, and the importance of music and poetry in coping with exile. In so doing, she raises wider questions concerning the preservation and articulation of identity amongst migrant communities. Urban Muslim Migrants in Istanbul is a rare ethnography of an Islamic urban group based on extensive archival research and interviews in various languages across Istanbul, Skopje and Kosovo. Trix's unique approach brings a human element to the study of forced migration, conflict and trauma and it is an important book for academics and policymakers interested in the Balkans, the Middle East, Turkey and migration studies.
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What Reviewers Are Saying
'... a beautifully written, lively, detailed discussion of the history of Balkan migrants in Istanbul. It is through, well documented, has a historical and contemporary perspective, and people in the story come out as real people. There is no such book like it on the topic.' - Esra Ozyurek, Associate Professor and Chair for Contemporary Turkish Studies at the European Institute, London School of Economics, '... gracefully and very accessibly written, highly scholarly, ethically and personally engaged without sentimentalizing its subject.' - Margaret Mills, Professor Emeritus, Center for Folklore Studies, Ohio State University