Redaktion: Florian Tuder
Religion in public space in Kosovo after 1989. Marta Kołczyńska
167 Religion in public space in Kosovo after 1989 Marta Kołczyńska The issue of religion in Kosovo is, characteristically for most Western Balkan coun- tries, rather unique. In Kosovo and in other countries of the region, religion means more than the encyclopedic definition of ‘human beings’ relation to that which they regard as holy, sacred, spiritual, or divine’.1 As a country disputed between Albani- ans and Serbs Kosovo itself has a political-religious character and as such is present in the public sphere in Serbia. The myth of Kosovo as the so-called ‘sacred land’ of the Serbs is, however, a separate subject. The focus of this paper is the functioning of religion in the public space in Kosovo after 1989, although earlier periods will also be mentioned. I will be dis- cussing the phenomenon of the presence of religion in public space in Kosovo on two levels: the first being Serbo-Albanian relations, and the second related to the meaning of religion to Albanians themselves. I decided to focus on the Albanian population of Kosovo and the regions with majority Albanian population, as I think that the Serbian-populated municipalities show patterns similar to those in Serbia proper. As no contemporary phenomena can be understood without studying the past, I will start with a sketch of historical developments, which led to the current religious and national structure in Kosovo, both of which are closely connected to each other. The second part of the paper will focus on the actual topic of...
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