This lecture outlines a number of parameters to illustrate the way that the Alevi Turkish community has become established in Europe from its origins in the 1960s until today, with a particular emphasis on Germany and Austria. It suggests that this population movement gives rise to a series of fascinating questions in terms of the way that the hitherto predominantly oral Alevi Turkish culture becomes scriptualized in its new urban settings. This in turn enables us to reconsider old questions such as the diffusion and transformation of cultures across national and regional boundaries. But leaving these theoretical considerations aside, the community’s migration to Europe has been a marked success in human terms. Understanding this, and what has made it so, provides us with a clear case study that can serve as an exemplar in an increasingly contested area of debate.
David Shankland is a specialist on the anthropology of modern Turkey. A former Visiting Professor at the University of Vienna, he is Director of the Royal Anthropological Institute, London, and Honorary Professor (Anthropology) at University College London. He is currently Stadt Wien ifk Fellow.
Ende: 08.01.2024, 00:00