World is their playground

PhotographerAristoula Beti
Prize2nd Place in One-shot:harmony / Documentary
Entry Description

Pomaks are a muslim minority of Western Thrace in Greece. They are not a homogeneous group with uniform ethnic responses. The representation of their identity is constructed by using criteria such as oral language and its Slavic elements, muslim religion, etc. Until 1996, if you wanted to visit Pomak villages, you had to pass a border control inside Greece and also take license from the Police Directorate of Xanthi. For years, Muslims faced an unacceptable policy of discrimination and persecution, which made the muslim minority a proponent of the propaganda of the Turkish Consulate in Komotini, but also a field of action and exploitation by the Greek extremist-nationalists. Being in such a state, Pomaks of Greece have proved capable of preserving traditional responses, while undergoing rapid changes the last years. In this photograph, a Muslim woman swings a young Christian girl in the Greek-Bulgarian borders, near Kottani village.