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Wiberg, Håkan
Vankovska, Biljana
Year of Publication: 
Series/Report no.: 
DIIS Working Paper 2005:15
The paper studies how nation, state and religion - in particular: churches - are related among Orthodox South Slavs: Bulgarians, Serbs, Macedonians and Montenegrins. The close relations between (self-conceived) nations and churches go back to the Ottoman Empire, and seem to have been strengthened by the conflicts in Former Yugoslavia since 1990. The close relation between state and nation go back to how the Ottoman empire was dissolved and have also been strengthened by the same conflicts, even though all states proclaim themselves as nondiscriminatory in this respect. The close relation between church and state also has long historical roots, but is more ambiguous today, with elements of competition as well as cooperation - and the latter is seen by many as having gone too far under communism. It is notable that where there are attempts to stabilise a separate identity - in Macedonia and Montenegro - establishing separate churches is a part of this on par with defining separate languages, rewriting history, etc. and the churches are seen as important national symbols even among quite secularised groups; and the same is true for the resistance against separation from the Serbian Orthodox Church.
Document Type: 
Working Paper

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