Negotiating Alevi Cultural Heritage: Stateless Cultural Assets of Marginalized Groups between Hegemonial Definition and Self-Standardization
Project leader: Dr. phil. Robert Langer (Department of Languages and Cultures of the Near East)
Funding line: Cultural Heritage and History
The project explores the complex processes of definition, creation, and construction of ‘cultural heritage’ in transcultural contexts. The research is based on a corpus of historical handwritten manuscripts from Alevi family archives and aims at testing the concept of ‘cultural heritage’ as an analytical tool, interpreting it as a process of negotiation; a process in which understandings of material and immaterial cultural practices and goods undergo continuous and drastic adjustments, especially with reference to socio-religious marginalization, national and transnational Migration, and experiences in the diaspora.
Thus, we have to grasp the allocation of function and (emotional) value inscribed in the present corpus if we are to describe and analyse the various modes of (re-)claiming the material as ‘cultural heritage’. Which Strategies do the agents of cultural heritage-production employ? What is the ratio between emotional need and strategic employment of this cultural heritage regarding questions of integration and recognition? How do the humanities contribute to the construction of ‘cultural heritage’ researching it?