Wednesday, 26 July 2017

Bury Me Standing: The Gypsies and Their Journey (1995) | By Isabel Fonseca

After spending four years among the Roma of Eastern Europe, Isabel Fonseca wrote a rich book about the way of life of the community that makes up the European Union’s largest ethnic minority.

Going around gypsy settlements in Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Germany and as far as Albania, Fonseca records the stories of all kinds of characters.

Her book describes in detail the Roma's traditions and the way they have been layered with their modern ideas and life – on anything from food and music to religion and taboos. Bury Me Standing is a good cultural guide for journeys to the numerous Roma-populated regions in Bulgaria and Romania. It would also be a useful read for the local ethnic majorities, which – despite a long-term cohabitation, don’t know the Roma communities well and continue to feel a traditional hostility towards them.




Balkan Culinary Wars III: Other People’s Meatballs

Ćevapčići from Leskovac, köfte from İzmir or Bulgarian kebapche? Greek keftedes too, please!
Full Story

Curiosity Chest

The Balkans' Street-Renaming Obsession

The battle over renaming streets in Eastern Europe since the fall of communism reflects their importance as symbols of identity, history and power. Full Story

Useful Reads

Through Another Europe (2009) | Edited by Andrew Hammond

When Henry Blount journeyed through Bosnia in the 1630s, two things struck him: the purity of the water and the great height of the Bosnians, which, he noted, “made me suppose them the offspring of those old Germans noted by Tacitus and Caesar for their huge size.”
Full Story


Romania Places Eurovision Hopes on Elena Gheorghe

Elena Gheorghe will represent Romania at the Eurovision semifinal in Moscow in May with the song "The Balkan Girls" after winning the national competition against 11 other acts on January 31. Full Story