Page 128 - MIGRATION

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MIGRATION, MEMORY, HERITAGE: SOCIO-CULTURAL
APPROACHES TO THE BULGARIAN-TURKISH BORDER
On the other hand, insofar as they provide the ideological “background” for the,
metaphorically speaking, “
small narratives
”of the everyday agents acting in the field of inheritance,
they are the condition underlying the possibilities not only of the official, but also of the semi-formal
discourse practices of the agents who are involved in the semi-official publicity of the meta-field of
symbolic representation. Here I consider those discursive practices by means of which the agents
act in the field of inheriting, exchanging “places”, “occasions”, and “events” and perpetuating the
business of “social investment”, thus in practice transforming their social capital into symbolic and
ensuring its subsequent return capitalization
37
. In other words, we have to take into account from
a methodological perspective the difference between “
grand narratives
of
and
about
the group
and the number of “
small narratives
” which have absorbed their
ideology
. Such meta-narratives in
the form of specific ideological discourses, as I already pointed out, can be observed on both sides
of the border.
The ideological dimensions of the two discourses gain legitimizingmight from their specific
symbolic efficacy and serve as conditions for the possibility of legitimacy for the two associations
– both in the eyes of official power and in the eyes of their constituent members. Therefore, the
symbolic efficacy of the two discourses
legitimizes
the particular associations as formal institutions,
while, in their turn, they are also
legitimized
by an
historical ideological
illusio
(since this, in terms
of Lyotard, “grand narrative” gains symbolic power from the past) which can be articulated in the
following manner: “
Let’s not forget what we are!
38
Here is the point to remind ourselves of the motto of UTSB which is printed on the logo
of the
Thrace
newspaper – “
Don’t forget, but do not avenge
”. At the same time, in the official
declaration circulated by the Federation of Bulgarian Out-migrants in Edirne we read,
We will never forget the tragic events of 1989. Let us bow to the memory of the victims of
the campaign for forceful renaming of the Bulgarian Turks, of all repressed and forcefully evicted
from their birth country hundreds of thousands of people.
We will invest every possible
effort to ensure they teach a lesson to our contemporaries and never happen again
(Emphasis mine S.P.).
The object in both ideological expressions is that historical ideological
illusio
which lies
at the core of my
thesis statement
that both groups attempt to both enforce their memory as
true memory
” about “then”, i.e. the time of migration, and control “
historical truth
” in the official,
37 Asweobserved, such“
occasions
”arebeingorganizedonboth sides of theborder – folklore festivals, openings
of memorials and monuments, reconstructions of churches, of out-migrant old houses; “
places
” – celebrating St
George’s Day in the St George church in Edirne, marking the 3
rd
of March at the Bulgarian Consulate in Edirne, the
opening of a Bulgarian cultural center at the University of Thrace in Edirne; or “
practices
” – the official marking of the
20
th
anniversary from the moment of out-migration to Edirne and the conference organized to this aim, going to a
“Sunday school” in Bulgarian, participation in folklore events promoting Bulgarian Strandja folklore “on the other side
of the border”, “traveling to the roots” (here I am using the title of the exhibition in Tzarevo so as to gesture at the so-
called “trips to the birthplaces of the Strandja people”) and so on and so forth. All the above-listed occasions, places
and practices are described in the analytical reports from our project. These occasions, places and practices attract,
seemingly and as if by chance, individuals whose capitals are possibly most homogeneous and who get down to the
business of capitalizing on their social capitals and their subsequent conversion into other forms of capital.
38 This is yet another derivation of the social form of identity “Become what you are”, following Bourdieu.