Religious Extremism vs. Multiculturalism in Bosnia and Herzegovina
Poligrafi Journal, Vol. 22, No. 85-86, p. 7-29, 2017
23 Pages Posted: 6 Jan 2018
Date Written: December 15, 2017
This paper begins with a survey of historical, cultural and civilization dynamics in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Since ancient times, Bosnia has been at the crossroads of different cultures, civilizations, religions and traditions, which inevitably affected the creation of a unique Bosnian multicultural model. Pilarska is right in asserting that “such tradition joints the elements of the Christian and Muslim culture, creating a specific content-related and cultural borderland stemming from the Greek-Byzantine (Orthodox), Western-European (Catholic and Ottoman (Islamic) provenance.” Many critics often question this model and multicultural discontinuity. However, common socio-cultural characteristics have never disappeared because in today’s Bosnia and Herzegovina after a bloody war, multiculturalism ensures the continuation of peace, equal opportunities and mutual tolerance, civil rights and multiethnic coexistence. Actually, in the past two decades, multiculturalism contributed a lot to peace-building and state-building. Multiculturalism and interfaith dialogue can be regarded the avenues towards successful tackling of extremism and terrorism. In this regard, besides the state and state institutions, the religious communities have contributed a lot towards peace and coexistence in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Content analysis of leading newspapers clearly illustrates that all religions stand together in the face of extremism and terrorism.
Keywords: religious extremism, multiculturalism, Bosnia and Herzegovina, religious leaders, media analysis
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