Sy Adyghe! I am a Circassian! Statement of "Haekure Habzaere" newspaper editorship
29 July 2010 - 11:05 am - NatPress
As a result of the genocide committed by the Russian state, instead of the united, integral nation, on the historical Native land only small, separated ethnic islands of Circassians - by the banks of Terek, Baksan, Malka, Zelenchuk, Laba, Kuban, and the Black sea coast - remained. During the Soviet time the decision to declare the rests of the dispersed people was made as four separate peoples: Adygs, Kabardians, Circassians and Shapsugs (despite of the general self-name and the one language), having created for them four different autonomies:
1. Circassian (Adygeyan) autonomous area (center - Krasnodar, since 1936 – Maykop town). In 1927 it was renamed into Adygeyskaya autonomous region.
2. Circassian autonomous region (center – Cherkessk town). In 1957 it was transformed into Karachaevo-Circassian autonomous region.
3. Kabardian autonomous region (center - Nalchik). In 1922 it was incorporated with Balkarian area into Kabardino-Balkarian autonomous region.
4. Shapsugian national area (center – Tuapse town, subsequently – Lazarevskoye settlement). In 1944 Shapsugian national area was transformed into Lazarevsky area of Sochi.
Dividing of the one people into four parts and almost a centenary propagation corresponding that action, caused a huge harm to the national consciousness, culture, and spirituality of Circassian people.
On March, 29th, 2010 the International Circassian Association addressed to the Institute of ethnology and anthropology of the Russian Academy of Sciences with inquiry, are Ubyhs, Shapsugs, Adygs, Circassians and Kabardians the one Circassian people.
On May, 25th, 2010 the reply of the Institute of ethnology and anthropology of the Russian Academy of Sciences was received.
We publish its text in full.
by the Deputy director
doctor of historical degree
on May, 25th 2010
The ethnonym ‘Circassian’ and toponym ‘Circassia’ as designations of the people and its country in North-Caucasus appeared in the Armenian, Georgian, Arabian, Persian, Turkic, and some other historical sources since the XIII century, having superseded the previous ethnonymic nomenclature - Kerkets, Zihs, Djiks, Kashags, Kases, Kasogs, Djarkases, and so on. The ethnonym ‘Circassian’ became common in the European and the Russian sources in the ХV-ХIХ centuries.
At the same time the local population invariable named itself ‘Adyghe’ though, probably, local names with which separate ethnopolitical formations – Natuhay, Abadzeh, Jane, Kabarday, and so on identified themselves - played their role anyway. Nevertheless, despite of the certain distinctions of social, cultural, language character, from the historical-ethnographic point of view, that is the one Circassian (Adygeyan) people.
The historical collisions of the XIX-XX centuries connected with the disasters of the Caucasian war, violent eviction of significant part of Circassians into the Ottoman empire, administrative transformations carried out by the imperial government, and then – by the bodies of the Soviet authority of the RSFSR and the USSR, led to formation in Russian Federation of the four territorially divided parts of Circassian people for which different ethnographic designations - Adygs, Circassians, Kabardians, Shapsugs - were fixed.
Rather recent (on the historical measures) territorial dissociation did not lead to loss in the people’s historical memory of the genetic and the cultural generality among these ethnic groups. Modern researches show that the ethnic identity and the basic layer of the traditional culture of Shapsugs, Adygs, Circassians and Kabardians are common. That testifies to that it is possible to consider the named groups as subethnoses of the one - Circassian (Adygeyan) people.
As to Ubyhs, that people had lived up to the middle of the XIX century in the upper flows of the rivers Sochi and Shahe, and almost completely moved to the Ottoman empire. According to the kept written historical documents Ubyhs named themselves ‘eakh’, though in that case the sources fixed only local name of that ethnic group.
The present not numerous descendants of Ubyhs, or those who considers himself as such (they were registered by the census-2002 in Russian Federation), are carriers of the All-Circassian identity, share Circassian (Adygeyan) cultural traditions, identify themselves with the basic part of the modern Circassian (Adygeyan) people.
Head of Caucasus department of the IEA of the Russian Academy of Science,
member-correspondent of the Russian Academy of Science, doctor of historical degree
Editorship of the newspaper "Haekure Habzaere" supports the statement of the Circassian web-site eLot.ru administration, and, in its turn, declares the following.
With Recommendations of the scientifically-practical forum "We are Adygs Circassians" (1991, Maykop);
With the Decision of the First All-Circassian congress (March, 28th, 1992, Nalchik);
With the Reply of the Institute of ethnology and anthropology of the Russian Academy of Science (May, 25th, 2010, Moscow)
Ascertaining that "Shapsugs", "Adygs", "Circassians", "Kabardians" are the one people:
- with the unvarying self-name "Adyghe", and with outer name "Circassian";
- with the one history;
- with the one culture;
- with the one mentality;
- with the one historical territory,
And aspiring to overcome the further dissociation of the people, editorship of the newspaper "Haekure Habzaere" DECLARES:
All the publications in Russian, published on the pages of our newspaper, will be corrected for using the name of our people and its derivatives of the one, scientifically given reason, historically proved writing by the principle:
Circassian (masculine gender)
Circassian (feminine gender)
The Given rule will be applied in all the materials of the newspaper, except for cases when the subethnic accessory would have basic value for text interpretation. Editorship of the newspaper calls the authors and all the readers in articles, issues, letters, as well as in their daily life to adhere to this principle.
Newspaper "Haekure Habzaere", web-site "Circassia – Adyghe Haeku"