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Choreographies of Shared Sacred SitesReligion, Politics, and Conflict Resolution$
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Elazar Barkan and Karen Barkey

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780231169943

Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.7312/columbia/9780231169943.001.0001

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Introduction

Introduction

Chapter:
(p.1) Introduction
Source:
Choreographies of Shared Sacred Sites
Author(s):

Elazar Barkan

Karen Barkey

Publisher:
Columbia University Press
DOI:10.7312/columbia/9780231169943.003.0001

This introductory chapter sets out the book's purpose, namely to explore the politics of the “choreography of sacred spaces” within the framework of state-society relations and to examine the positions, roles, and agency of various actors and institutions in an attempt to differentiate between the political and the religious features of the shared or contested space. It seeks to understand whether sharing and contestation are politically or religiously motivated. The chapter then discusses the three main areas of research that this book explores. It starts with issues of coexistence that are fundamental to understanding the kinds of arrangements that can be found within shared sacred sites and the consequences of those arrangements. It then examines characteristics of shared sacred sites, including narratives, centrality, and indivisibility, to underscore how such features are theorized in the literature. Finally, it discusses the various ways in which state-society relations, state structures, and the impact of state policies contribute to sharing sacred sites.

Keywords:   sacred spaces, shared sacred sites, state-society relations, coexistence, state structures, state policy, sharing

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