Nathalie Clayer


Research Professor, CNRS & EHESS/CETOBAC, Paris


Nathalie Clayer is Research Professor at EHESS, Paris and a Senior Research Fellow at CNRS-CETOBAC, Paris. Her main early research theme was the history of Muslim mystical brotherhoods in the Balkans and, more generally, in the Ottoman Empire. While deepening her research on Albanian Islam, she became interested in questions of identity and nationalism. Current events have also pushed her towards studies concerning Islam at the heart of post-communist transformations. Furthermore, she has turned to the study of the transition from empire to nation-state. Her research has concerned, on the one hand, the political and social transformations in the final years of the Ottoman era and, on the other hand, the question of religion, power and state formation in inter-war Albania. This led her to work also, on a comparative basis, on the management of religious plurality in Turkey, as well as on the broader issue of Kemalism. In recent years, her work has focused on five main issues: religious pluralism; mobilisation and the formation of the state; networks, transfers and mobilities; space; and biographical approaches.

Her publications include Aux Origines du Nationalisme Albanais (Paris: Karthala, 2007), L’Autorité Religieuse et ses Limites en Terres d’Islam (Leiden: Brill, 2013, coedited with Alexandre Papas and Benoît Fliche; Les Halvetis dans l’Aire Balkanique de la fin du XVe siècle à nos jours (Leiden: Brill, 1994), ‘The Bektashi Institutions in Southeastern Europe: Alternative Muslim Official Structures and their Limits’, Die Welt des Islams, 52 (2012): 183-203; ‘Sufi Printed Matter and Knowledge About the Bektashi Order in the Late Ottoman Period’, in R. Chih, C. Mayeur-Jaouen, R. Seesemann, eds., Sufism, Literary Production, and Printing in the Nineteenth Century, Wurzburg: Ergon, 2015: 351-3.

Publications related to the project’s theme

Nathalie Clayer, ‘The Pilgrimage to Mount Tomor in Albania: A Changing Sacred Place in a Changing Society’, in Tsypylma Darieva, Thede Kahl, Svetoslava Toncheva, eds., Sakralität und Mobilität im Kaukasus und in Südosteuropa, Vienna: Verlag der Österreichischen Akademie der Wissenschaften, 2017: 125-42

Nathalie Clayer, ‘Saints and Sufis in Post-Communist Albania’, in Kisaichi Masatoshi, ed., Popular Movements and Democratization in the Islamic World, London & New York: Routledge, 2006: 33-42

Nathalie Clayer, ‘Les Miracles des Cheikhs et Leurs Fonctions dans les Espaces Frontières de la Roumélie du XVIe siècle’, in D. Aigle, ed., Miracle et Karâma: Hagiographies Médiévales Comparées, Turnhout: Brepols, 2000: 435-58

Nathalie Clayer, with Alexandre Popovic, ‘Le Culte d’Ajvatovica et son Pèlerinage Annuel’, in H. Chambert-Loir & C. Guillot, eds., Le Culte des Saints dans le Monde Musulman, Paris: École Française d’Extrême Orient, 1995: 353-65

Nathalie Clayer, ‘Quand l’Hagiographie se Fait l’Écho des Dérèglements Socio-Politiques: Le Menâkıb-nâme de Münîrî Belgrâdî’, in G. Veinstein, ed., Syncrétismes et Hérésies dans l’Orient Seldjoukide et Ottoman (XIVe-XVIIIe siècle), Paris: Peeters, 2005, p. 363-381

Nathalie Clayer, ‘The Myth of Ali Pasha and the Bektashis: The Construction of an “Albanian Bektashi National History”’, in S. Schwandner-Sievers & B.J. Fischer, eds., Albanian Identities: Myth and History, London: Hurst, 2002: 127-33

Nathalie Clayer, ‘Münîrî Belgrâdî: Un Représentant de la ‘Ilmiyye dans la Région de Belgrade, Fin XVIe Siècle–Début XVIIe Siècle’, in S. Prätor & C.K. Neumann, eds., Frauen, Bilder und Gelehrte: Studien zu Gesellschaft und Künsten im Osmanischen Reich, Festschrift Hans Georg Majer, Istanbul: Simurg, 2002: 549-68

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