The Hidden Nation: Circassians in Jordan
The Hidden Nation: Circassians in Jordan This research looks at the Circassian diaspora in Amman, Jordan. Existing literature on the subject only studies the history of Circassians in Jordan. Literature that studies the current situation is sparse and inconclusive, and much of it does not include the most recent developments. This research includes the analysis of five interviews of Circassian Jordanians in Amman. Topics covered include family history, traditions and customs, language, relations with Arabs, greater cultural self-awareness as a result of globalized media and the Olympics controversy, and the future of Circassians in Amman. Most Circassians have been living in Jordan for more than a century. A horrific genocide killed hundreds of thousands of Circassians and forced many to Turkey and later the Levant. Circassians founded the modern city of Amman. The conservation of the culture has been challenging, but many aspects, such as dance, music, food, and symbols have survived. The preservation of the Circassian language has been one of the diaspora’s biggest failures. Circassians have largely intermingled with Arabs, but many still feel somewhat uncomfortable interacting with them. The rise of the Internet and social media, in addition to the 2014 Winter Olympics controversy, have sparked a cultural revival. Many Circassians are now more aware of their history. This new revival is still new and it is unclear whether it will make a lasting impact.