Between Temptations of Turkish Slavery and Ethnic Solidarity: The Discourse on the Renegade Phenomenon in Ukrainian Folklore

Vortrag von Dr. Oleksandr Halenko (Kiew) im Rahmen der Vortragsreihe „Konvertiten, Renegaten, Neuosmanen im Osmanischen Reich“

Bild: Lviv National Art Gallery

Termin: 10.04.2019, 18.00 Uhr c.t
Ort: Hörsaal 221(AAI, Edmund-Siemers-Allee 1, Ost)

In the Ottoman Empire the vast majority of renegades did not change identity voluntarily, because they were slaves. The Ukrainian folklore voices complex motives of such involuntary renegades, as it accumulates collective experiences of the nation, which for a long time was a principal source of Ottoman slaves. On the one hand, scenes of physical and moral sufferings, apostasy and death illustrate threats of enslavement. On the other, praised are wealth, power, pride, luxury and even sensual pleasures, which were promised to all Ottomans, including renegades. Renegades also appear as protagonists of several epics (dumas) that accumulated broad popular discourse, developed in response to the devastating slaving raids of the Crimean Khanate. The stories and characters of renegades, unquestionably fictional, set praiseworthy examples of their continuing loyalty to Christian faith, family, and compatriots. Some remarkably promised to renegades absolution in exchange for assisting compatriots to regain freedom and to return home. Eventually, it was a desperate appeal to cooperation between compatriots, and such epics provide good example, how hard collective experience stimulated consolidation of a nascent nation.

Referent: Dr. Oleksandr Halenko studied European history in Kyiv. After the demise of the Soviet Union he independently engaged in Turkology with focus on the role of Turkic polities in the history of Ukraine. In 1996-1999 he served as deputy director of the Institute of Oriental Studies in Kyiv. He also taught at the National University of Kyiv-Mohyla Academy and conducted research on the Islamic collection at the Bogdan and Varvara Khanenko Museum of Art in Kyiv. Currently he is affiliated with the Centre for the Study of Civilizations in the Black Sea Area at the Institute of History of Ukraine. His recent publications include Tarih-i Naima: Reports on Ukraine. Translation and Studies (Kyiv, 2016); “Wine production, marketing and consumption in the Ottoman Crimea, 1520-1542”, Journal of the Economic and Social History of the Orient 47 (4), 507-547; “How a Turkish Empress Became a Champion of Ukraine”, Roxolana in European Literature, History and Culture, 125-140; “The Harsh Landscapes of“ Mother Sarmatia“: Steppe Ukraine through the Eyes of a 16th-Century Polish Diplomat”, Harvard Ukrainian Studies 32, 349-376.

Über TEZ

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