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5 The Ribnovo Wedding: A Pomak Tradition

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Chapter Summary

This chapter talks about the wedding tradition in Ribnovo. It provides a step-by-step analysis of one truly remarkable ritual, as part of the Pomak culture, which is by no means unknown. The chapter discusses an introduction of Ribnovo as a place and community the way the author saw it during visits in 2004, 2009, and 2013, and a descriptive narrative of the traditional wedding rituals with special emphasis on the bride's decoration and dowry. It analyzes the wedding tradition as a major rite of passage. The chapter examines the Ribnovo wedding in the context of claiming and preserving Pomak culture. First, because the wedding ritual, as practiced in Ribnovo, is unique, beautiful, and forgotten elsewhere in the Rhodopes, it naturally stands out as an important heritage attribute. Second, the chapter safely claims the Ribnovo wedding as a Pomak tradition, because the community itself identifies as Pomak.

Keywords: community; Pomak culture; Ribnovo; wedding tradition



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