Papers of BAS, Humanities and Social Sciences

Vol. 4, No 1, 2017

ETHNOLOGY

THE FESTIVE DAYS OF THE BULGARIAN COMMUNITY IN CHICAGO – MODELS OF CULTURAL HERITAGE IN MIGRATION

Nikolai Vukov and Mariyanka Borisova

Abstract: The current paper presents the main representations and forms of the Bulgar­ian cultural heritage that is preserved, distributed and reproduced by various traditional and newly-found Bulgarian migrant institutions and organisations in Chicago. The emphasis is on holidays and festivals that are organised by Bulgarian schools, churches, folk groups, and cul­tural associations in Chicago, which put in the focus of their work the Bulgarian language, tra­ditions and history. All these can be regarded as means of spending free time and of providing entertainment on festive days, but can also be seen as indicative of maintaining links with the culture of origin and of reasserting cultural and historical identity. Based on authors’ fieldwork observations of the Bulgarian institutions in Chicago in 2015 and on their continuous explora­tions among immigrant communities after 1989, the paper elicits some of the models through which Bulgarian cultural heritage shapes up as a consolidating factor for Bulgarians abroad.

Key words: migration, migrant community, cultural heritage, festive days