Page 103 - MIGRATION

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101
MIGRATION, MEMORY, HERITAGE: SOCIO-CULTURAL
APPROACHES TO THE BULGARIAN-TURKISH BORDER
1) at the level of“constitutive dispositions of habitus”which generate not only correct actions
and practices, but also disappointments, tensions, conflicts and contradictions, psychological
traumas and suppressed intentions;
2) at the level of objective structures and theways inwhichsocial order im-printsonbodiesby
“collect[ing], channel[ing], reinforce[ing] or counteract[ing] psychological processes depending on
whether there is a homology, redundancy, and reinforcement […] or, to the contrary, contradicition
and tension” (Bourdieu 1999: 512).
Such duality entailed in the mechanisms of inheriting requires endogenical tracing of the
ways inwhichthe two levels“fit”soas toensure thepossibility for
“ontological complicity”between
biographical and social
illusio
(sometimes, as in the case of “Bulgarian-Turkish out-migrants”, for
instance, formed under different social conditions), i.e. how the
illusio
as that “which is worth dying
for” is internally determined and prompts the agent to investements in various objects, but is also
determined externally through the entire repertoire of objects which are socially predisposed to
merit that investment.
Inotherwords, the
socioanalytical layering
of themechanismsof
inheriting
whenstudying
migrant groups requires: 1) the articulation of the ways in which heritage is “preserved” at the level
of objective structures, i.e.
institutionally
; such an analysis will allow for
“understanding”
formal
discourses and the discourse practices of their speakers, which delineate the institutional level of
heritage discourse, explaining their ideological underpinnings and performative features; 2) the
articulation of the ways in which heritage is given/received at the level of the agent and everyday
practices, i.e.
habitually
; through a parallel socioanalytical layering of the autobiographical practices
of the agents participating as producers and/or consumers in the process of social production and
use of the heritage discourse on both sides of the Bulgarian-Turkish border. Such an analysis will be
revealing of the very contradictions entailed in the group of inheritors of ‘Thracian Bulgarians’ or of
‘Bulgarian-Turkish out-migrants’
as
“inheritors”
4
.
From this point arises the next analytical sphere of issues – I intentionally emphasize
the methodological requirement for “understanding” hereby alluding to another emblematic
methodological study, thatof
LaMisereduMonde
, byBourdieu
5
. In it theauthorgivesmethodological
reasons for the procedures of
praxeological understanding
on behalf of the researcher of the forms
of experience and practices of agents: “to understand” the process of giving/receiving“inheritance”
in the situation of border crossing – as is the case with the migrant groups and their successors
studied here – means to account for a number of viewpoints and perspectives in the (auto-)story
of the agents in the study. Such a research perspective entails a suspension of the relation to
“oneself” (including both the attitude towards one’s body and the relation to one’s name, identity,
social position, and biographical choices, or, generally, to “inheritance”) of the group of “Thracian
refugees” or that of “Bulgarian-Turkish out-migrants” as a specific form of experience:
4 I intentionally emphasize the
“as”
[
qua
] perspective, insofar as it is revaling of essences, and deriving from this
establishes essential identities as well (cf. Deyanov 2001).
5
Contradicitons of Inheritance
and
Understanding
are important methodological studies which form the basis
of Bourdieu’s later work
La Misere du Monde
. The latter discusses the new forms of « social suffering » evident among
those who are in a particular position of « misery » and is key for the situation of late modernity which Bourdieu
renders through the loss of « auto-
nomy
» of the fields (at the end of the present essay I discuss this issue in relation to
the loss of the specific
nomos
of the field of inheriting « Thracian heritage »).