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Author: Michał Moch   |   Pages: 119–132



The article has got two important parts and dimensions. The first is rather methodological and concentrates on giving ideas that could refresh and enrich the interdisciplinary research on ethnic issues in the Arab world. The author's point of view is the one of an Arabist who combines philology with the methods of contemporary social sciences. In the second part of the text the methodological context is practically utilized in the analysis of chosen examples. This would be the case of the Maronites of Lebanon - their collective identity and politics of history conducted by their elites. Lebanon itself is a unique example of Muslim-Christian 'confessional democracy' in a region dominated by the Arab-Muslim civilization. However uniquely diversified, it can also serve as an example of a more universal social phenomena concerning the entire Arab world. The Maronite question is very interesting in this context, because it illustrates a rare situation in which minority, ethnic and religious community, becomes the dominant group - only to return finally to the role of a minority fighting for its place in the society.


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