Acculturation Strategies and Dance: Identity Construction Through the Example of “Zonaradikos or Omouslamas” Dance of The Gagaouz of Thrace, Greece

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dance, Zonaradikos, identity, acculturation


The aim of this paper is to study the different manifestations of the dance practice of the Gagaouz of Inoi of Evros as tactics in search of their ethnic identity. In particular, with reference to the analysis of the main dance of the repertoire of the Gagaouz and all of Thrace, Zonaradikos or Omouslamas and based on the fluid nature of identity formation, this paper aims to investigate the attitudes with which members of this ethnic group, as subjects of social action, self-identify, construct and reconstruct their ethnic identity, depending on the circumstances, each time belonging to different ethnic groups. Data was gathered through ethnographic method as this is applied to the study of dance, while its interpretation was based on the theoretical perspective of constructivism under the analytical terms of "acculturation" according to the multicultural model proposed by Berry. From the data analysis, it is showed that the Gagaouz, through dance, choose on the one hand to have a Thracian ethnic identity and on the other Gagaouz ethnic identity and on a third level they identify themselves as Thracian Gagaouz, experiencing a social reality which seeks to have multiple identities at the same time.


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Author Biography

Eleni Filippidou, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens

Eleni Filippidou is a postdoctoral researcher at the School of Physical Education and Sport Science of the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens with a scholarship from the Hellenic State Scholarship Foundation and Lecturer in the Department of Physical Education and Sport Sciences and Techniques of the French College Idef-Universite Paris13. She is a graduate of the Department of Physical Education and Sport Science of the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens and holds a Postgraduate and Doctoral Degree in Folklore-Anthropology of Dance at the same university.


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How to Cite

Filippidou, E. (2022). Acculturation Strategies and Dance: Identity Construction Through the Example of “Zonaradikos or Omouslamas” Dance of The Gagaouz of Thrace, Greece. Journal of Ethnic and Cultural Studies, 9(2), 216–233.



Original Manuscript
Received 2021-11-13
Accepted 2022-04-30
Published 2022-05-13