Islam: Romani or Roma People (Gypsies): The Indigenous Muslims / Moslems and Potential Islamic State ISIS/ISIL or Daesh and Al Qaeda Terrorist Militants in the Balkans and Europe

Islam: Romani or Roma People (Gypsies): The Indigenous Muslims / Moslems and Potential Islamic State ISIS/ISIL or Daesh and Al Qaeda  Terrorist Militants in the Balkans and Europe

flag_of_the_romani_people-svg

The Romani (also spelled Romany; /ˈrməni/, /ˈrɒ/), or Roma, are a traditionally nomadic ethnic group, living mostly in Europe and the Americas and originating from the northern regions of the Indian subcontinent,[52][53][54] presumably from where the states Rajasthan, Haryana, and Punjab exist today.[53][54] The Romani are widely known among English-speaking people by the exonymGypsies” (or “Gipsies“), which some people consider pejorative due to its connotations of illegality and irregularity.[55]

Romani people
Flag of the Romani people.svg

Romani flag created in 1933 and accepted by the 1971 World Romani Congress
Total population
2–20 million[1][2][3][4]
Regions with significant populations
 United States 1,000,000 estimated with Romani heritage
(5,400 per 2000 census[5])[6]
 Brazil 800,000[7]
 Turkey 700,000–5,000,000[8]
/~2,750,000/[9][10]
 Spain 650,000–1,500,000[8][11][12][13]
 Romania 621,573–2,000,000[8][14][15]
 France 350,000–500,000[16][17]
 Bulgaria 325,343–800,000[18][19]
 Hungary 315,583–990,000[20][21]
 Greece 300,000–350,000[22]
 United Kingdom 90,000–300,000
/~225,000/[8][23]
 Russia 182,766–1,200,000[8][24]
 Serbia 147,604–500,000
/~250,000/[25][26]
 Italy 120,000–180,000[27]
 Germany 120,000–140,000[8][28]
 Slovakia 105,738–600,000[8][29][30]
 Macedonia 53,879[8][31]
 Sweden 50,000–100,000[32]
 Ukraine 47,587–400,000[8][33]
 Czech Republic 40,370 (Romani speakers)[34]–300,000[35]
 Argentina ~300, 000[36]
 Portugal 40,000–70,000[8][37]
 Kosovo 40,000[38]
 Netherlands 32,000–48,000[8]
 Poland 15,000–60,000[8][39]
 Moldova 12,778–200,000[8][40]
 Croatia 16,975–40,000[8][41]
 Bosnia and Herzegovina 8,864–60,000[8][42]
 Albania 8,301–150,000[8][37][43]
 Canada 5,255–80,000[44][45]
 Finland 11,000–50,000
 Australia 5,000–25,000[46]
 Mexico 15,850[47]
 Colombia ~8,000[48]
 Slovenia 2,300[49]
 Lithuania <3,000[50]
Languages
Romani language, Para-Romani varieties, languages of native regions
Religion
Of the religious predominantly Christianity[51]
Islam[51]
Shaktism branch of Hinduism[51]
Related ethnic groups
Dom, Lom, Domba; other Indo-Aryans

Romani are dispersed, with their concentrated populations in Europe – especially Central, Eastern and Southern Europe including Turkey, Spain and Southern France. They originated in Northern India and arrived in Mid-West Asia, then Europe, around 1,000 years ago,[56] either separating from the Dom people or, at least, having a similar history;[57] the ancestors of both the Romani and the Dom left North India sometime between the sixth and eleventh century.[56]

Since the 19th century, some Romani have also migrated to the Americas. There are an estimated one million Roma in the United States;[6] and 800,000 in Brazil, most of whose ancestors emigrated in the nineteenth century from eastern Europe. Brazil also includes some Romani descended from people deported by the government of Portugal during the Inquisition in the colonial era.[58] In migrations since the late nineteenth century, Romani have also moved to other countries in South America and to Canada.[59][page needed]

turalde

In February 2016, during the International Roma Conference, the Indian Minister of External Affairs stated that the people of the Roma community were children of India. The conference ended with a recommendation to the Government of India to recognize the Roma community spread across 30 countries as a part of the Indian diaspora.[60]

The Romani language is divided into several dialects, which add up to an estimated number of speakers larger than two million.[61] The total number of Romani people is at least twice as large (several times as large according to high estimates). Many Romani are native speakers of the language current in their country of residence, or of mixed languages combining the two; those varieties are sometimes called Para-Romani.

Image result for romani people

Image result for romani people

Names

Exonyms

Endonyms

  • Rom means man or husband in the Romani, it has the variants dom and lom, related with the Sanskrit words dam-pati[lord of the house, husband], dama[to subdue], lom[hair], lomaka(hairy) loman, roman [hairy]. romaça [man with beard and long hair].[67]
  • Another possible origin is from Sanskrit डोम doma [member of a low caste of travelling musicians and dancers].
  • Sanskrit सिनधु (sindhu) is a river or stream of water in general. In particular, it denotes the river Indus and the country around it (commonly called Sindh).[citation needed]

Image result for romani map

Romani usage

In the Romani language, Rom is a masculine noun, meaning ‘man of the Roma ethnic group’ or ‘man, husband’, with the plural Roma. The feminine of Rom in the Romani language is Romni. However, in most cases, in other languages Rom is now used for people of all genders.[68]

Romani is the feminine adjective, while Romano is the masculine adjective. Some Romanies use Rom or Roma as an ethnic name, while others (such as the Sinti, or the Romanichal) do not use this term as a self-ascription for the entire ethnic group.[69]

Sometimes, rom and romani are spelled with a double r, i.e., rrom and rromani. In this case rr is used to represent the phoneme /ʀ/ (also written as ř and rh), which in some Romani dialects has remained different from the one written with a single r. The rr spelling is common in certain institutions (such as the INALCO Institute in Paris), or used in certain countries, e.g., Romania, to distinguish from the endonym/homonym for Romanians (sg. român, pl. români).[70]

b-zbbim-exu

Population and subgroups

Romani population

Main article: Romani populations

For a variety of reasons, many Romanies choose not to register their ethnic identity in official censuses. There are an estimated four million Romani people in Europe (as of 2002),[90] although some high estimates by Romani organizations give numbers as high as 14 million.[91] Significant Romani populations are found in the Balkans, in some Central European states, in Spain, France, Russia and Ukraine. Several million more Romanies may live out of Europe, in particular in the Middle East and in the Americas.[92]

Romani subgroups

Like the Roma in general, many different ethnonyms are given to subgroups of Roma. Sometimes a subgroup uses more than one endonym, is commonly known by an exonym and/or erroneously by the endonym of another subgroup. The only name approaching an all-encompassing self-description is Rom.[93] Even when subgroups don’t use the name, they all acknowledge a common origin and a dichotomy between themselves and Gadjo (non-Roma).[93] For instance, while the main group of Roma in German-speaking countries refer to themselves as Sinti, their name for their original language is Romanes.

Subgroups have been described as, in part, a result of the Hindu caste system, which the founding population of Rom almost certainly experienced in their South Asian urheimat.[93][94]

Debret, Jean-Baptiste (c. 1820), Interior of a gipsy’s house in Brazil.

Volkers, Emil (c. 1905), Camping gypsies near Düsseldorf, Germany.

Gypsies camping. Welsh Romanies near Swansea, 1953

Many groups use names apparently derived from the Romani word kalo or calo, meaning “black or “absorbing all light”.[95] This closely resembles words for “black” and/or “dark” in Indo-Aryan languages (e.g. Sanskrit काल kāla: “black”, “of a dark colour”).[93] Likewise the name of the Dom or Domba people of North India – to whom the Roma have genetic,[96] cultural and linguistic links – has come to imply “dark-skinned”, in some Indian languages.[97] Hence names such as kale and calé may have originated as an exonym and/or euphemism for Roma.

Image result for roma people

Other endonyms for Romani include, for example:

Diaspora

Main article: Romani diaspora

The Roma people have a number of distinct populations, the largest being the Roma and the Iberian Calé or Caló, who reached Anatolia and the Balkans about the early 12th century, from a migration out of northwestern India beginning about 600 years earlier.[110][111] They settled in present-day Turkey, Greece, Serbia, Romania, Moldova, Bulgaria, Macedonia, Hungary and Slovakia, by order of volume, and Spain. From the Balkans, they migrated throughout Europe and, in the nineteenth and later centuries, to the Americas. The Romani population in the United States is estimated at more than one million.[112]

There is no official or reliable count of the Romani populations worldwide.[113] Many Romani refuse to register their ethnic identity in official censuses for fear of discrimination.[114] Others are descendants of intermarriage with local populations and no longer identify only as Romani, or not at all.

As of the early 2000s, an estimated 3.8[115][page needed] to 9 million Romani people lived in Europe and Asia Minor.[116][page needed] although some Romani organizations estimate numbers as high as 14 million.[117] Significant Romani populations are found in the Balkan peninsula, in some Central European states, in Spain, France, Russia, and Ukraine. The total number of Romani living outside Europe are primarily in the Middle East and North Africa and in the Americas, and are estimated in total at more than two million. Some countries do not collect data by ethnicity.

The Romani people identify as distinct ethnicities based in part on territorial, cultural and dialectal differences, and self-designation.[118][119][120][121]

*********

Religion

Christian Romanies during the pilgrimage at Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer in France, 1980s

Some Romani people are Christian, others Muslim, some retained their ancient faith of Hinduism from their original homeland of India, others have their own religion and political organization.[179]

Beliefs

The ancestors of modern-day Romani people were previously Hindu, but adopted Christianity or Islam depending on their respective regions they had migrated through.[180] Muslim Roma are found in Turkey, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Albania, Egypt, Kosovo, Macedonia, and Bulgaria, forming a very significant proportion of the Romani people. In neighboring countries such as Greece most of the Romani inhabitants follow the practice of Orthodoxy. It is likely that the adherence to differing religions prevented families from engaging in intermarriage.[181]

Balkans

Costume of a Romani woman (most likely Muslim Roma).

For the Roma communities that have resided in the Balkans for numerous centuries, often referred to as “Turkish Gypsies”, the following histories apply for religious beliefs:

  • Albania – The majority of Albania’s Roma people are Muslims.[186]
  • Bosnia and Herzegovina and Montenegro – Islam is the dominant religion among the Roma.[187]
  • Bulgaria – In northwestern Bulgaria, in addition to Sofia and Kyustendil, Christianity is the dominant faith among Romani people, though a major conversion to Eastern Orthodox Christianity among Romani people has occurred. In southeastern Bulgaria, Islam is the dominant religion among Romani people, with a smaller section of the Romani population, declaring themselves as “Turks”, continuing to mix ethnicity with Islam.[187]
  • Croatia – Following the Second World War, a large number of Muslim Roma relocated to Croatia (the majority moving from Kosovo).[187]
  • Greece – The descendants of groups, such as Sepečides or Sevljara, Kalpazaja, Filipidži and others, living in Athens, Thessaloniki, central Greece and Greek Macedonia are mostly Orthodox Christians, with Islamic beliefs held by a minority of the population. Following the Peace Treaty of Lausanne of 1923, many Muslim Roma moved to Turkey in the subsequent population exchange between Turkey and Greece.[187]

Muslim Romanies in Bosnia and Herzegovina (around 1900)

Other regions

In Ukraine and Russia the Roma populations are also Muslim as the families of Balkan migrants continue to live in these locations. Their ancestors settled on the Crimean peninsula during the 17th and 18th centuries, but then migrated to Ukraine, southern Russia and the Povolzhie (along the Volga River). Formally, Islam is the religion that these communities align themselves with and the people are recognized for their staunch preservation of the Romani language and identity.[187]

Most Eastern European Romanies are Roman Catholic, Eastern Orthodox, or Muslim.[189] Those in Western Europe and the United States are mostly Roman Catholic or Protestant – in southern Spain, many Romanies are Pentecostal, but this is a small minority that has emerged in contemporary times.[185] In Egypt, the Romanies are split into Christian and Muslim populations.[190]

*******

Muslim Roma or Muslim Gypsies are Romani people who adopted Islam. Romanies have usually adopted the predominant religion of the host country. Islam among Romanies is historically associated with life of Romanies within the Ottoman Empire. Correspondingly, significant cultural minorities of Muslim Roma are found in Turkey, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Albania, Egypt, Kosovo, Republic of Macedonia, Bulgaria (by mid-1990s estimates, Muslim Roma in Bulgaria constituted about 40% of Roma in Bulgaria.[1]), Romania (a very small Muslim Romani group exist in the Dobruja region of Romania, comprising 1% of the country’s Romani population)[2]), Croatia (45% of the country’s Romani population[3]), Southern Russia, Greece (a small part of Muslim Roma concentrated in Thrace), Crimea and the Caucasus. Because of the relative ease of migration in modern times, Muslim Roma may be found in other parts of the world as well.

After the collapse of the Ottoman Empire in the parts where Islam is no longer a dominant religion Muslim Roma have found themselves under double discrimination, both on ethnic (Antiziganism) and religious grounds.[4]

Muslim Roma throughout Southern Europe call themselves Horahane Roma (“Turkish Roma”, also spelled as Khorakhane, Xoraxane, Kharokane, Xoraxai, etc.) and are colloquially referred to as Turkish Roma or Turkish Gypsies in the host countries

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s