Al-Maqam foundation for development of humanities and cultural projects, St. Petersburg, Russia
European University at St. Petersburg, St. Petersburg, Russia;
University of Amsterdam, Amsterdam, the Netherlands
TRANSREGIONAL HISTORY OF A MUSLIM FAMILY: ORAL AND WRITTEN TESTIMONIES ON THE DESCENDANTS OF MUHAMMAD SHARIF AL-BULGHARI
Abstract.The main argument of this article is that familial history of migrants can shed a new life on the dynamics of religious politics on the remote areas of the Russian empire and the Soviet Union. On the basis of manuscript sources (Sufihagiographies, genealogies, travel accounts) and interviews with our contemporaries — members of the family of migrants from Central Russia to Khwarazm and northern Iran, we demonstrate how the idea of pious resettlement proved to be crucial in the identity of a migrant community, which played a central role in the local religious developments. Our article helps to debunk the prevailing national narratives that underline the ethnic borders and self-denominations, while for our informants religious identity and belonging to a respected sacred family has been much more important.
Keywords:migrations, Naqshbandiyya-Mujaddidiyya, Urgench, Khwarazm, Tatarstan, Tatar Sufis, hagiographies
Acknowledgement. This article is written in the framework of the NWO research program “The Russian Language of Islam” (project No. 360-70-490) and with support of the Russian Foundation for Basic Research (RFBR) (project no. 17-81-01042 a(ts)).
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Received by the Editorial Board:07.12.2017