Contested Ethnic Identity

The Case of Macedonian Immigrants in Toronto, 1900–1996

by Chris (Hristo) Kostov (Author)
©2010 Monographs XII, 318 Pages
Series: Nationalisms across the Globe, Volume 7


During the twentieth century Macedonia had a very turbulent history. Essentially, the region became the apple of discord among the Balkan states. Ethnic identity formation among immigrants from Macedonia to Canada followed the political developments in the Balkans.
This book illustrates the late emergence of an ethnic Macedonian community in Toronto and the roots of the clash between the Macedonian, Greek and Bulgarian ethnic communities. The author tackles a number of important questions: When did the Macedonian ethnic identity start in Canada? What was the ethnic affiliation of the first Macedonian immigrants’ cultural organizations and churches in Toronto? Why did they use the Bulgarian language? Why do their first churches continue to be called Macedono-Bulgarian churches? Did all immigrants have one monolithic ethnic identity?
The author relies upon three different types of literature: national identity development and theories; Balkan history; and ethnic studies of the Bulgarian, Macedonian and Greek settlements of Toronto. Oral interviews, conducted in Toronto by the author and other researchers, enhance this volume. The book sheds light on a much contested subject which continues to fuel debate from Skopje, Athens and Sofia to Toronto and Melbourne.


XII, 318
ISBN (Softcover)
Publication date
2011 (March)
Macedonian Immigrants in Toronto Ethnic Identity Bulgarian language immigrants from Macedonia to Canada
Oxford, Bern, Berlin, Bruxelles, Frankfurt am Main, New York, Wien, 2010. XII, 318 pp., num. tables and graphs

Biographical notes

Chris (Hristo) Kostov (Author)

Chris Kostov is a historical research consultant for the Canadian federal government. He obtained his PhD in history from the University of Ottawa in 2009. He has specialized in modern Central and Eastern European history, the history of Canadian immigration and Native American Studies. He is the author of Terror and Fear: British and American Perceptions of the French-Indian Alliances during the Seven Years’ War (2005).


Title: Contested Ethnic Identity