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Interdenominational Interaction in Ottoman Cyprus (Orthodox, Catholics, Armenians, Jews)

Ioannis Zelepos - Researcher, Institute for Byzantine Studies, Byzantine Art History and Modern Greek Studies, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität, Munich

 

Abstract

The co-existence of different religious communities under conditions of relatively tolerant political rule is a historical constant in Cypriot society, as well as in other Ottoman- but also Venetian-controlled regions of the Eastern Mediterranean in the early modern period. Research on this phenomenon has focused mainly on institutional aspects and on interdenominational contact in the form of grassroots syncretism and religious conversions. Less attention has been given, however, to the implications on normative discourses of the religious communities themselves regarding the giving of meaning to alterity and the definition of identity in a multi-denominational environment. This paper investigates, on the basis of selected sources, religious auto- and hetero-stereotypes from this perspective.

 

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