Mary NeuburgerFeb 23, 2012
The Orient Within
Muslim Minorities and the Negotiation of Nationhood in Modern Bulgaria
Cornell University Press 2004
Eastern Europe has never had the draw for scholars or tourists of France, Italy, Germany, or Great Britain, and within eastern Europe Bulgaria has invariably been overshadowed by Poland and the former Habsburg territories in the north and the more volatile region of former Yugoslavia. Just because Bulgarian history has not been at the center of European events, however, does not mean its history is any less interesting or valuable for understanding how humans deal with change. Indeed, at a time when western Europe wonders how to deal with its immigrant Muslim minority, the experience of Bulgaria's indigenous Muslim population offers a valuable perspective on how ideas about modernity and otherness get negotiated without necessarily leading to an all out clash of civilizations. Mary Neuburger demonstrates this well in her book The Orient Within: Muslim Minorities and the Negotiation of Nationhood in Modern Bulgaria (Cornell University Press), which originally appeared in 2004 but is now available in paperback.