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Linked biographies in changing times: Syriac Christians in Vienna

Linked biographies in changing times: Syriac Christians in Vienna
Linked biographies in changing times: Syriac Christians in Vienna
This article examines the intersection between history and biography in an intergenerational context. It is based on ethnographic research among immigrant Syriac Christians in Vienna who originate from Turkey. Two historical experiences of crisis and rupture have been particularly relevant for identity construction: first the Christian massacres in eastern Anatolia in 1915?16 that depleted and
traumatised the community; and second the massive processes of dispersal that set in with the migrations to Western Europe in thepost?1960 period. In taking a narrative approach the paper looks at biographies as negotiations of history and belonging. It argues that the impact of history on personal lives is socially mediated and that a biographical perspective needs to take this into account, both methodologically and analytically. The ethnography draws on the family as a key context for such “linked biographies”.
syriac Christians, biographical narrative, transmission, community endangerment
0046-2616
469-478
Armbruster, Heidemarie
44560127-8f08-4969-8b47-e19f21f23c37
Armbruster, Heidemarie
44560127-8f08-4969-8b47-e19f21f23c37

Armbruster, Heidemarie (2014) Linked biographies in changing times: Syriac Christians in Vienna. Ethnologie Francaise, 44 (3), 469-478. (doi:10.3917/ethn.143.0469).

Record type: Article

Abstract

This article examines the intersection between history and biography in an intergenerational context. It is based on ethnographic research among immigrant Syriac Christians in Vienna who originate from Turkey. Two historical experiences of crisis and rupture have been particularly relevant for identity construction: first the Christian massacres in eastern Anatolia in 1915?16 that depleted and
traumatised the community; and second the massive processes of dispersal that set in with the migrations to Western Europe in thepost?1960 period. In taking a narrative approach the paper looks at biographies as negotiations of history and belonging. It argues that the impact of history on personal lives is socially mediated and that a biographical perspective needs to take this into account, both methodologically and analytically. The ethnography draws on the family as a key context for such “linked biographies”.

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More information

e-pub ahead of print date: July 2014
Published date: July 2014
Keywords: syriac Christians, biographical narrative, transmission, community endangerment
Organisations: Modern Languages

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 375917
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/375917
ISSN: 0046-2616
PURE UUID: 9c909087-f26b-42db-8f80-80568b8886be

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 20 Apr 2015 13:11
Last modified: 06 Oct 2020 23:31

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