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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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Three Ways of Sharing the Sacred

Three Ways of Sharing the Sacred

Choreographies of Coexistence in Cyprus

(p.69) 2 Three Ways of Sharing the Sacred
Choreographies of Shared Sacred Sites

Mete Hatay

Columbia University Press

This chapter examines religious sites in Cyprus where the everyday practices of “peaceful coexistence” always threatened to break down. It considers three basic types of sites: spaces of (temporary) submission, where members of both communities knew of and believed in the efficacious power associated with the site, but where the site clearly “belonged” to one community and its clergy; contested shared spaces, where members of both communities believed in the power of the site but where there was an unresolved dispute, usually based on competing accounts of the site's origins, over which community could legitimately claim authority; and economic spaces, or those sites believed by only one community to have efficacy but which may have been tolerated by the other community for pragmatic reasons, usually the economic benefit that their presence brought. The chapter concludes by using these sites to reflect on how the variety of practices and attitudes toward them can help us think about debates over tolerance and its varieties.

Keywords:   religious sites, peaceful coexistence, Cyprus, sacred sites, temporary submission, shared spaces, economic spaces, Islam

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