The Construction of National Identity through Cybernetic Process: The Example of “K’na” Dance Event in Greek and Turkish Thrace

Open access

Abstract

The research field of this paper is the area of Thrace, a large geopolitical-cultural unit that was divided – due to political reasons – in three subareas distributed among three different countries: Bulgaria, Turkey and Greece. A dance event that used to take place before the border demarcation but is still performed in the Greek and Turkish Thrace is that of “K’na”, a wedding dance event danced by the people of both border areas, despite of the changes in their magical-religious beliefs and the changes brought by socio-economic and cultural development. In particular, the aim of this paper is the study of the “construction” of the national identity of inhabitants both of Greek and Turkish Thrace, as this is manifested through the dance practice within the wedding event of “K’na”, through the lens of sociocybernetics. Data was gathered through ethnographic method as this is applied to the study of dance, while its interpretation was based on sociocybernetics according to Burke’s identity control theory. From the data analysis, it is showed that the “K’na” dance in Greek and Turkish Thrace constructs and reconstructs the national identity of the people who use them as a response to the messages they receive via the communication with “the national others”. In conclusion, the “construction” of the identity results from a continuous procedure of self-regulation and self-control through a cybernetic sequence of steps.

If the inline PDF is not rendering correctly, you can download the PDF file here.

  • Adshead J. & Layson J. (eds.). (1986). Dance history. A methodology for study. London.

  • Buckland Th. J. (1999). Introduction: Reflecting on dance ethnography. In T. Buckland (Εd.) Dance in the Field. Theory Methods and Issues in Dance Ethnography (pp. 1-10). Great Britain: Macmillan Press Ltd.

  • Burke P. J. (1991). Identity processes and social stress. American Sociological Review56 836–849.

  • Burke P. J. (1991b). An identity theory approach to commitment. Social Psychology Quarterly54 239-251.

  • Burke P. J. (1995). Identities and self-verification in the small group. Social Psychology Quarterly 58 61-73.

  • Burke P. J. (1996). Social identities and psychosocial stress.In H. Kaplan (eds.) Psychosocial Stress: Perspectives on Structure Theory Life Course and Methods. Orlando FL: Academic Press.

  • Burke P. J. (1997). An identity model for network exchange. American Sociological Review 62 134-150.

  • Burke R. J. &. Cooper C. L. (2000). The organization in crisis: Downsizing restructuring and privatization. Oxford: Blackwell Publishers.

  • Burke P. J. & Freese L. (1989). Identity and social structure. Annual meeting of the American Sociological Association. San Francisco CA.

  • Burke P. J. & Gecas V. (1994). Self and identity. In K. Cook G. Fine & J. (eds.) House Sociological Perspectives on Social Psychology. Boston: Allyn and Bacon.

  • Burke P. J. & Reitzes D. C. (1981). The link between identity and role performance. Social Psychology Quarterly44 83–92.

  • Burke P. J. & Stets J. (1994). Inconsistent self-views in the control identity model. Social Science Research23 236-262.

  • Burke P. J. & Tully J. (1977). The measurement of role/identity. Social Forces55 881–897.

  • Burke W. W. (1980). Systems theory gestalt therapy and organization development. In T.G. Cummings (eds) Systems Theory for Organizational Development (pp. 20 222. New York: Wiley-Interscience.

  • Chatzopoulos K. (2015). The integration of Thrace in Greece. In M. Dimassis P. Valsamidis I. Bakittzis A. Papazoglou & A. Nisam (eds.) Representations and Separations (pp. 411-418). Komotini: Democritus University of Thrace School of Classical and Human Studies.

  • Chilari A. (2009). Local and national identity in motion: The example of Tsakonikos dance in Leonidio Arcadia. Unpublished postgraduate dissertation. Athens: TEFAA University of Athens.

  • Cowan J. (1998). Idioms of belonging: Multilingual (co) localization of local identity in a Greek community in Macedonia. In D. Gefou-Madianou (ed.) Anthropological theory and Ethnography. Modern trends (pp. 583-618). Athens: Ellinka Grammata

  • Dimopoulos K. (2011). Components of the field and gendered dance practices. The lowland and mountainous communities of Karditsa Thessaly and the period 1920-1980. Master thesis. Athens: Department of Physical Education and Sport Science National Kapodistrian University of Athens.

  • Dimopoulos Κ. Tyrovola V. & Koutsouba M. (2009). The end of a ritual or the beginning of new social structures? The case of Bright Tuesday in the community of Lazarina Karditsa Thessaly. In Proceedings of the 23rd World Congress on Dance Research (pp. 1-6). Malaga: International Dance Council-CID

  • Dimopoulos K. (2017). Timeless and synchronous processes in the “game” of gender identity construction. Dance and gendered transformation in the community of Megala Kalyvia Trikala Thessaly. PhD thesis. Athens: Department of Physical Education and Sport Science National Kapodistrian University of Athens

  • Ellestad J. & Stets J. E. (1998). Jealousy and parenting: Predicting emotions from identity theory. Sociological Perspectives41 639-668.

  • Erixon S. (1967). Urgent-ethnological tasks. Ethnologia Europaea 1163-169.

  • Filippidou E. (2010). Recycling the tradition: The dance in Nea Vyssa northern Evros. Alexandroupolis: Municipality of Vyssa.

  • Filippidou E. (2011). Dance and identity search. Αcculturation and retribalization strategies of Inoi Gkagkavouz in Evros. Master thesis. Athens: University of Athens Department of Physical Education and Sport Science.

  • Filippidou E. Koutsouba M. & Tyrovola V. (2013). Interweaving dance ritual and identity: The dance at the “k’na” ritual as a reference point for the formation of the local cultural identity at the Greek region of Evros. Science of Dance 6 19-40. Available at http://www.elepex.gr/images/stories/ektostomos/filippidou-kna-full-text-gr.pdf.

  • Filippidou E. (2018). Crossing the borders uniting the people. Cybernetic dance approach at the “k’na” Thracian wedding event in Greece and Turkey. PhD thesis. Athens: University of Athens Department of Physical Education and Sport Science.

  • Fountzoulas G. (2016). Dance and politics: Positions and contrasts in the dance event “Gaitanaki” in Skala and in Dafni Nafpaktia Greece. Master thesis. Athens: TEFAA University of Athens.

  • Fountzoulas G. Koutsouba M. Hapsoulas A. & Lantzos V. (2017). The transformation of the intangible cultural heritage of dance through state education and politics in the ritual of a rural Greek community. Mediterranean Journal of Social Sciences 8(1) 243-251. Available at http://www.mcser.org/journal/index.php/mjss/article/view/9687/9326.

  • Geertz C. (2003). Thick description: Toward an interpretive theory of culture. In C. Geertz (ed.) The interpretation of cultures. Selected essays (pp. 1-30). New York: Basic Books

  • Gefou-Madianou D. (1999). Culture and ethnography. From ethnographic realism to political criticism. Athens: Ellinika Grammata.

  • Giurchescu A. & Torp L. (1991). Theory and methods in dance research: A european approach to the holistic study of dance. Yearbook for Traditional Music23 1-10.

  • Giurchescu A. (1994). The Power and the Dance Symbol and its Sociopolitical Use. In I. Loutzaki (ed.) Dance and its Socio-Political Aspects. Dance and Costume Proceedings from the 17th Symposium of the Study Group on Ethnochoreology (pp. 15-23). Nafplion: Peloponnesian Folklore Foundation & International Council for Traditional Music.

  • Giurchescu A. (2001). The power of dance and its social and political uses. Yearbook for Traditional Music33 109-121.

  • Greek parliament. (2000). Thrace 2000 80 years of integration with Greece. Athens

  • Holt T.R. & Turner E.J. (eds.). (1972). The methodology of comparative research. New York: The Free Press.

  • Hutchinson A. (1977). Labanotation. The system of analyzing and recording movement. London: Dance Books.

  • Kalogeropoulou S. (2013). Greek dance and everyday nationalism in contemporary Greece. Master dissertation. New Zealand School of Physical Education Sport and Excersice Sciences. University of Otago.

  • Koutsouba M. (1991). The Greek Dance Groups of Plaka: A Case of “Airport Art”. M.A. dissertation. Guildford: Department of Dance University of Surrey.

  • Koutsouba M. (1997). Plurality in motion: Dance and cultural identity on the Greek Ionian Island of Lefkada. Ph.D. thesis. London: University of London.

  • Koutsouba M. (1999). “Outsider” in an “inside” world or dance ethnography at home. In T. Buckland (ed.) Dance in the Field: Theory Methods and Issues in Dance Ethnography (pp. 186-195). London: Macmillan Press.

  • Koutsouba M. (2003). Identity and anthropological aspects of traditional dance. In N. Giftulas and others. (ed.) Arts II: Overview of Greek music and dance: Greek dance practice: traditional dance (Volume E pp. 33-45). Patras: Hellenic Open University

  • Koutsouba I.M. (2005). Notation of dance movement. The passage from prehistory to the history of dance. Athens: Propobos.

  • Koutsouba M. (2014). Places dance(s) and ‘realities’. Contexts and dance forms of Tsamikos dance in Greece. In E.I. Dunin & C.E. Foley (eds.) Dance and Place & Dance and Festival Proceedings of 27th Symposium of the International Council for Traditional Music (ICTM) Study Group on Ethnochoreology (pp. 99-106). Ireland: The Irish Academy of Music and Dance University of Limerick.

  • Lalioti V. (2002). Social memory and ethnic identity: Ancient Greek drama performances as commemorative ceremonies. History and Anthropology13(2) 113-137.

  • Lange R. (1980). The development of anthropological dance research. Dance Studies4 1-36.

  • Leonidou L. (2011). A geographic country. Greek idols in the epistemological reflections of European geography. Athens: Propobos.

  • Littlejohn S.W. & Foss K.A. (2012). Human communication theories. Athens: Pedio.

  • Luhmann N. (1990). Essays on Self-Reference. N.Y.: Columbia University Press.

  • Lydaki A. (2001). Qualitative methods of social research. Athens: Kastaniotis.

  • Manos I. (2002). Visualizing culture - demonstrating identity: Dance performance and identity politics in a border region in northern Greece. Germany: Universität Hamburg.

  • Margaris Z. (2004). L’ Immigration Albanaise en Grece. Danse et indentification. PhD Thesis. Paris: Université Paris 8.

  • McQuail D. & Windahl S. (1993). Communication Models for the Study of Mass Communication. London: Longman.

  • Nitsiakos V. & Mantzos K. (2002). Civilizing the tradition: Uses of polyphonic songs in Greece and Albania. At the Scientific Symposium The Present of the Past: History Folklore Social Anthropology (pp. 131-147). Athens: Society for Studies of Modern Greek Culture and General Education.

  • Ogurchov PA (1983). Comparative-historical method. In the Great Soviet Encyclopedia (pp. 298-299). Athens: Akadimos.

  • Parliamentary Papers Great Britain Turkey No 1. (1923). Lausanne Conference en Near East Affaires 1922-1923 Records of Proceedings and Draft Terms of Peace. London 817.

  • Paschalidis G. (2000). Cultural identity as a right and a threat. The dialectics of identity and the ambivalence of criticism. In Ch. Konstantopoulou L. Maratou-Alibranti D. Germanos & Th. Economou (Ed.) ”We” and “Others”. Reference to Trends and Symbols (pp. 73-83). Athens: Typothito.

  • Panopoulou K. (2001). The dancing identity of the Vlachs of Serres. PhD Thesis: Department of Physical Education and Sport Science Serres. Aristotle University of Thessaloniki.

  • Papakostas Ch. (2007). Dance-musical identity and otherness: The case of the Roma of Herakleia in the prefecture of Serres. PhD Thesis. University of Thessaly.

  • Rumley D. & Minghi J.V. (1993). The Geography of border landscapes. New York: Routledge.

  • Sarakatsianou Z. (2011). National groups and dance practices in Stenimachos Imathia Macedonia. The custom of Saint Tryphon as an indicator of local cultural identity. Unpublished postgraduate dissertation. Athens: TEFAA University of Athens.

  • Sklar D. (1991). On dance ethnography. CORD Dance Research Journal23(1) 6-10.

  • Stets J. E. (1995). Modelling control in relationships. Journal of Marriage and the Family 57 489-501.

  • Stokes P. (2006). Identity: articulating cybernetics and sociology. Kybernetes35 (1/2) pp. 124-147.

  • Stokes P. A. (2007). From management science to sociology: Cybernetics finalization and the possibility of a social science. Kybernetes. 36(3/4) 420-436.

  • Stocking G. (1992). The Ethnographer’s magic and other essays in the history of Anthropology. Μadison: The Univervity of Wisconsin Press.

  • Swann W. B. & Hill C. A. (1982). When our identities are mistaken: Reaffirming self conceptions through social interaction. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology43 59–66.

  • Thompson P. (2002). Voices from the past: Oral history. Athens: Pletron.

  • Topaloglou L. & Petrakos C. (2008) Attitudes and perceptions of the border for the initial conditions of cross-border interaction: Problem or advantage. Research Series14 (7) 119-142.

  • Vrizas K. (2005). Global communication. Political Identities. Athens: Gutenberg.

  • Watzlawick P. Beavin J. H. & Jackson D. D. (1967). Pragmatics of human communication: A study of interactional patterns pathologies and paradoxes. New York: Norton.

  • Wilson M. T. & Donnan H. (1998). Nation state and identity at international borders. In Border Identities. Nation and State at Intrnational Frontiers. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Search
Journal information
Metrics
All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 0 0 0
Full Text Views 243 243 17
PDF Downloads 132 132 10