Cultural Change in Traditional Dances

in Florina, Greece

A Pilot Study

by Joan Friedberg


Both Slavic-Macedonian and Albanian influences are evident in the musical repertoire in the Florina region of Greece and have contributed to the development of the region’s dances. In particular, the unique 12/8 musical meter, which has possible Albanian roots, has diffused into the musical repertoire and is the meter of the region’s most popular dance, the Pušteno (pronounced "pooshteno"). A preliminary survey of participatory dances in five Florina villages is used to define the current repertoire and provides evidence of cultural change resulting in the Hellenization of the repertoire.


Florina is a border town in the northwest corner of Greece and is also the name for the prefecture. Just 17 kilometers to the north is the border with the Republic of Macedonia. The border with Albania lies about an hour's drive to the west, just beyond Lake Prespa.

Enclaves of Slavic-speaking citizens whose ancestors first settled in this region some 1,400 years ago still inhabit outlying villages. Elements of folklore in the Florina region are the legacy of these Slavs as well as other ethnic groups who have inhabited the region.

At various times during its turbulent history, these native-born citizens have emigrated to Yugoslavia, Canada, Australia and the United States. Many have later returned and brought with them diverse cultural elements as well as the common bond of xenitia (literally, "foreign lands," referring to the common experience of living and working abroad).

Florina’s geographical location on the frontier bordering two other nations as well as internal colonization and acculturation have influenced both the dance structure and repertoire of the region.

Cultural Identity and the Dance

On August 14, 1993, I attended a panegyri (Saint's Day festival) on the day preceding the Dormition of the Virgin (KoimhsiV thV Qeotokou) in the Florina village of Polypótamos (Neret), formerly a Slavic village.1 I arrived at dusk, but the panegyri didn’t get underway until after dark.

As I waited, older village women wearing black capes emerged from the shadows and, like blackbirds, wandered into the village square and perched on the sidelines. Smoke filled the night air with smells of cooking. I waited as hour after hour passed, but no one danced. The few times people danced, they did a Syrtos. After I had waited for hours, suddenly the band began to play a Pušteno, and several men got up and began to dance. This dance was played and danced five times during the course of the evening.

Late into the evening, while dancing the Syrtos, men frequently broke away from the leading position in line to give money to the band for a special request. Requests seemed to fall into two categories: 1) traditional Macedonian ballads, and 2) requests for dances that were fun or offered an opportunity to show off.

Some of the Slavic-Macedonian songs and dances were identical to those of their ethnic cousins in the Republic of Macedonia.2 However, in two instances, Slavic-Macedonian songs and tunes were played by request, but rather than dancing the dances traditionally associated with this music in the Republic of Macedonia, the dancers instead did Greek dances.

In Polypótamos, for example, the men gave the band money, and the band subsequently played and sang traditional Slavic-Macedonian songs such as: "Mi Go Zatvorile" (You Shut Me Out), "Lazi Vere Lazi" (Lying Vera) and others. The men, however, danced a Syrtos rather than a Lesnoto, which is the dance you would see to these songs in the Republic of Macedonia and elsewhere. (This dichotomy also occurs on videos I’ve seen taken at panegyria in other predominantly Slavic Florina villages.)

The same disparity occurs when Macedonian Rom music is played. Throughout the Florina area, Tikino Oro (Tiki's dance), a Macedonian Rom tune, has become quite popular. However locals dance a Záramo (Slavic: "za ramo" means "on the shoulders") to it rather than the Rom dance, Cocek. Another popular Rom tune, Ramo Ramo (in Romani, Ramo is a man's name), to which Macedonian Roma people dance a Cocek, is danced as a Syrtos by Floriniotes. Again, though the music is non-Greek, the dancers do a Greek dance to it. In fact, the Greek pop icon Georgos Dalaras sings a version of the tune, renamed "Loyia Kleidomena," with Greek lyrics, played in a Syrtos rhythm.

Many of the Slavic-Macedonian songs played by Florina bands are known widely in Florina due to the influence of broadcasts from Radio Skopje. Slavic-speakers seem to embrace these songs in their mother tongue. From my informal contact with musicians in the region, I have found the musicians I met to be largely Slavic speakers. An exception was in the village of Flambouro, which in former times had an Albanian-speaking population, and in which the musicians claimed to be Greek Epirotes or of Pontian heritage. In Slavic-speaking villages, the musicians may be compelled to play songs from Radio Skopje by people who pay for special requests of these popular songs.3

Albanian legacies of former times and the cultural influence of Vlachs who inhabit the region can also be observed in the music, the dances and in the traditional costumes, the Albanian remnants specifically in the villages of Drossopigi (Belkameni), Flambouro (Negovan), and Lehovo.4 In terms of music and dances, these influences are pervasive in the Florina region. The music may have originally derived from Albanian and other Rom musicians who have blurred ethnic distinctions in the musical repertoire in order to play a wide range of musical styles to please their various patrons. Today local musicians do the same.

Music and Dances in the 12 Meter

The Pušteno (spelled Poustseno by Greeks) is known by many names, including: Litos, Levendikos, Kucano, Nešo, Bufsko, Bufiko and others.5 It is the most characteristic and popular dance of Florina. According to local historians, the Pušteno is a national dance that celebrates Greek Macedonia's liberation from Ottoman rule in 1913. Due to its extraordinary popularity, its unique and ususual rhythm, and its geographical distribution, the Pušteno is a dance that merits further study.

The Pušteno has an asymmetrical musical meter of 12/8 (3-2-2, 3-2).6 The geographic distribution of this musical meter provides strong empirical evidence that it derives from Albanian tradition and has diffused to surrounding regions, since its occurrence closely coincides with areas that are, or have been, inhabited by ethnic Albanians. The meter is common in songs as far north as Kosovo, in Western Yugoslavia, where 90 percent of the population is (or was until recent events) ethnic Albanian, as well as in music of both Gegs (in the North) and Tosks (in the South) of Albania and the Republic of Macedonia, and as far south as the Voiou region (south of Kastoria) of Greece.7 There is some variety in the rhythmical patterns of music within the 12 meter, to the extent that many of the songs and instrumental tunes in this meter in other regions differ considerably from the rhythms found in the musical repertoire in the same meter in the Florina region. For example, in the Albanian/Yugoslav border region around Dibra (Dibër, Debar), strident Albanian heroic ballads as well as pop tunes have a 12/8 meter in an inverted (3-2, 3-2-2) construction.8 The 12/8 meter is also common in the Lake Prespa region, encompassing three nations, though the playing style varies widely.9 In Bitola, 33 kilometers to the north of Florina, the 12/8 meter (3-2-2, 3-2) tends to smooth out into an 11/8 (3-2-2-2-2).

The 12 meter appears in songs of the Republic of Macedonia and, infrequently, in Bulgaria, but, aside from Western Greek Macedonia, the 12 meter is not found in music of other regions of Greece. In fact, the 12/8 meter, at first glance, seems to be alien from meters commonly known to Greek music. However, in those rare circumstances when such tunes are written, they are customarily written as alternating 7/8 and 5/8 measures, meters which, when not combined, occur frequently in music throughout Greece and the Balkans. Upon further analysis, if we combine two measures of 7/8 (3-2-2, 3-2-2), which is the meter of the Greek Kalamatianos, and simply drop the last beat, the result is a 12 (3-2-2, 3-2). Therefore, one could also argue that the 12/8 is merely a variation of 7/8. However, the lack of the appearance of the combined 12/8 meter in Greece outside of Western Greek Macedonia, where there has been some diffusion of Albanian melodies as well, seems to substantiate the Albanian derivation theory.

Other Florina dances are also found in the 12 meter. Starsko Pušteno (Slavic: Old Pušteno, Gk: Gerondikos) is a dance in 12/4 with the same step pattern as Pušteno. (The word "pušteno" refers to a genre as well as a specific dance.) It was traditionally danced by the old men beginning in a very slow tempo and gradually increasing in tempo. A stage version, renamed Gerondikos, as choreographed and widely taught by Simos Constandinou, breaks off into pairs, as often seen in Albanian dances.10 But the Starsko Pušteno is rarely seen anymore in any participatory context in the Florina region. According to my acquaintance and informant in Florina, folklorist Vangeli Mitrou, you can sometimes still see the old men dancing the Starsko Pušteno at a wedding, but these rare glimpses of the dance have all but disappeared. I did not observe either old men or old women (with one exception at a wedding) dancing at all in Florina.11 For as yet undetermined reasons, the younger generations of men do not do this dance, and it therefore, by attrition, may be becoming extinct as a participatory dance. It was not until my third visit to Florina, in August 1999, that I finally witnessed the Starsko Pušteno in a participatory setting at a panegyri in the village of Kato Ydroussa (Kotori). The man leading the dance was middle-aged.

Berance (12/8 meter) is a Pušteno-type dance as danced in the Lake Prespa region in the Republic of Macedonia.12 It is closely related to Starsko Pušteno, and they may indeed have originally been one and the same dance, although they are now structurally different. In the village of Alona, in the past when old men danced in a slow 12/4 meter, the dance was known by its Slavic names: Starskoto (the old dance) or Teškoto (the "heavy" dance).

In the Republic of Macedonia, a variation of Berance is known as Camce or Camceto. These names translate as "dance of the Cams" (pronounced "Chams") or "the dance of the Cams," a Slavic name that non-Cam people gave to the dance, attributing it to the Cams. The Cams were a subgroup of ethnic Tosk Albanians. This name attribution provides further evidence that the 12/8 musical meter is most common in regions inhabited by ethnic Albanians.

Berance is not danced in Florina. However, at church picnics and parties sponsored by St. Mary's Macedonian Church of Whittier, California, immigrants from the Lake Prespa area (to the west) to the small town of Resen to the north (in the Republic of Macedonia) dance the Berance with the style of native dancers. At one of these events a man began dancing the Berance with a great deal of improvisation. He was originally from the village of Ljubojno, north of Agios Germanos just beyond the Greek border.

This man’s dance expression and style, as well as his long absence from his homeland (he lived in Australia for many years) provoke the romantic notion that one might see in his dancing a reflection of an earlier time in Florina, since he could not have been influenced by changes that may have taken place in his village.

Beratis (Beratiko, Bairatis, Beratçe) is another dance in 12/8 meter.13 In Flambouro, they also dance a Beratis in a 7/8 rhythm. Both are danced in the basic 2-measure step pattern similar to the dance Sta Dio. I first observed these dances in the Florina village of Flambouro, in former times an Albanian village, at the panegyri of Our Lady the Life-Giving Spring (Giorth Zwodocou PhghV) on April 28, 1995. The 12/8 Beratis had the unusual characteristic of starting with a lift and step on the left foot. My initial reaction was that the leader was starting on the wrong foot, because most dances from Greece and the Southern Balkans begin on the right foot.14 Yet, as I watched, I saw that 30 or 40 dancers were following the leader. A source in Flambouro told me the dance was called Beratis (not to be confused with the Beratis in 8/8 from Epirus). The melody is the closely similar to, if not the same, as the Albanian tune Goranxë. In a return visit to Flambouro in August 1999, I again witnessed this local village dance. In other Florina villages, people generally dance the standard, three-measure Pušteno to this tune.

Florina’s Music and Dance Repertoire

In an attempt to determine and define Florina’s traditional dance repertoire, I reviewed my audio and video recordings taken during brief visits to Florina in August 1993 and in April 1995. I then made a list of every dance at each event. (See Appendix A.) The villages where these events occurred are: Polypótamos, Psarades, Andartiko (Zelevo), Flambouro and Skopiá (Nevoljani). This data has since been supplemented by reviewing videos shot by other people in other Florina villages, including Alona (Armensko), Atrapós (Karpešina), and Xino Nero (Ekšisu), although there is no guarantee that these other videos include every dance.

The most popular dances (based on, and in order of, frequency) at the panegyria and at weddings are: 1) Pušteno, Gk: Poustseno, danced either to instrumental tunes or to songs sung in Slavic (Makedonski); 2) Syrtos in 7/8, danced to popular Slavic-Macedonian songs as well as to popular Greek songs; 3) Záramo, danced to Slavic-Macedonian songs as well as to Rom tunes; 4) Sta Dio; 5) the Pontian dance Tik Tromahton.

Many dances that are a part of the Florina repertoire obviously originated in other areas. Two foreign-born dances are the Tango (Argentina) and the Waltz (Vienna). The Tango and Waltz are not danced at the panegyria. I observed these at a wedding reception near Skopiá, and they may have been played by special request. Pan-Macedonian dances such as Eleno Mome, Maritsa, and Pajduško are known to be of Bulgarian origin but are commonly danced in Florina and have become a part of the standard repertoire in a wide-ranging area.15 Pontian dances, such as Tik Tromahton and Kotsari, originated in the Black Sea region and have a distinctive character all their own.

Excluding the above dances, and in addition to the dances in the 12 meter already discussed, the remaining repertoire includes the following dances:

Gaida Florina (2/4 meter). Gaida is a men's dance that takes its name from the goatskin bagpipe by the same name and is well-known throughout Macedonia in various forms. In Florina it starts out very slowly, with the leader improvising crawls, turns, and jumps. It eventually becomes quite fast and segues into a Hasapsko (aka Hasapiá) that is danced with tight, syncopated hopping steps in a style similar to the Serbian U-šest (in six), but traveling only in the line of direction. (Sometimes the music for this also sounds suspiciously like an U-šest tune.) I observed it at a wedding reception in Andartiko on August 15, 1993. Záramo, mentioned earlier, is also a men's dance, with similarities to Gaida. According to Pavlos Koufis (see bibliography), dancers will not request Záramo but instead use the Slavic term "za ramo" to instruct the dancers to hold shoulders. Záramo is danced to many popular Slavic tunes. Both Gaida and Záramo may segue into a Hasapsko.

Menousis (2/4 meter). Menousis is a man's name and a tragic ballad from Epirus. I observed this unique dance at a panegyri in Polypótamos on August 14, 1993 and at a wedding reception in Andartiko on August 15, 1993. (This dance is also found among Moslem Albanians of the Lake Prespa region in the Republic of Macedonia.)16 In the Menousis of Florina, the step pattern is somewhat different than the way it is danced in Epirus. In the Florina version, the dancers take three small steps backward, followed by two pas-de-bas and a step and touch. Reliable informants from Florina have told me this dance is not traditional in Florina but was introduced by a visiting dance teacher. Nevertheless, in Polypótamos, a circle of perhaps 30 or 40 people were dancing it, so it seems to have found its way into the participatory repertoire.

Makedonía (aka Cetvornata, ie: "the one in four") (4/4 meter). The dance, widely known in Bulgaria and in the Republic of Macedonia as Maritsa, is a part of the standard dance repertoire at almost every dance occasion in a wide-ranging area. In Florina, it is danced to the tune "Makedonía," a Greek Macedonian patriotic song from the post-Balkan War period.17 In this case, a dance originating in Bulgaria has been adapted to Greek music, the reverse of what occurs with Syrtos. Nevertheless, the result is again a Hellenizing influence on the folklore, creating a cultural "hybrid."

Raïkos (aka Rajko Kokorajko) (7/8 meter). "Rajko" is a common Slavic man’s name. "Kokorajko" is a Slavic word for "dandy." The name seems to be a take-off of the popular tune "Zajko Kokorajko," (rabbit dandy). Raïkos seems to show up frequently in performing groups but only occasionally at panegyria or weddings, making it suspect as a traditional dance of this region. However, there could be a possible connection of both to the dance Arap. Raïkos has the same step pattern as Arap but without the lifts. In some Florina villages, Záramo is danced whenever the band plays the tune "Zajko."

Also worth mentioning is a ritual use of the dance Zeibekiko at weddings. In August, 1993, at a wedding in Antartiko, the groom danced the Zeibekiko within the confines of a flour sifter as guests threw drachmes into it, a comical as well as perhaps a symbolic dance forewarning of the groom’s new domestic status.

In the village of Alona, the dance Omorfoula (Lidšeno)(Beautiful Girl) is second in popularity (frequency of being danced) only to Pušteno and has similar footwork but is in a 2/4 meter.18 This dance has been taught at dance workshops by Simos Constandinou along with some others -- Sympethera (mother-in-law), Koutsos (limping), Aravoniasmata (engagements) (Sivo Si Kojdes), and Tsotsou .19 Sympethera and Tsotsou are closely related in step and style to Omorfoula. These and other dances are danced only in the villages of Alona and Akritas (Buf), although they are frequently exhibited by performing groups.20


It is unclear without further research whether the phenomenon of Greek dances being danced to Slavic, Albanian, and Macedonian Rom music in Florina occurs due to diffusion of Slavic, Albanian, and Rom musical influences from its nearby neighbors to Greece or is due to a natural acculturation process of Slavo-Macedonians to their acquired status as Greeks. These processes, in addition to factors such as cultural repression and xenitia, may have encouraged cultural divergence apparent in the dance repertoire in the Florina region.21 This divergence appears to have resulted in a change of repertoire resulting in a partial change of cultural identity.

An in-depth study in the Florina region would be required to verify the theories presented here, and oral history interviews with the local people, in particular elderly people from the villages, would undoubtedly provide further insights into the history and development of Florina’s dances.

References and Notes

1 Koufis, (1994), p. 58

2 On Aug. 2, 1982, I observed the following dances at an Illinden picnic in Trnovo, a monastery outside Bitola: Zaramo, Berance, Pajduško, Eleno Mome, Pravo, Maritsa and Sitno. These same dances are danced by immigrants from Bitola and the Lake Prespa region at picnics and dinner dances at St. Mary’s Macedonian Church in Whittier, Calif. Of these, Zaramo, Pajduško, Eleno Mome and Maritsa (Makedonía) are danced in Florina.

3 Ethnomusicologist Jane Sugarman (Asst. Professor, Music, SUNY, Stony Brook) reveals that most songs she has heard at family gatherings in the now Republic of Macedonia have been learned from Radio Skopje rather than from oral tradition. (Private communication). The same must certainly be true in Florina for many of these songs. For example, according to Sugarman’s record data, "Lazi, Vere, Lazi" -- the best-known recording, by Miteva-Uzunov, with the Dragi Mitev orchestra, on RTB 12 972, is notated as a folk song from the Strumica district and recorded in 1974. Many other songs often played by Florina bands, in the genre of songs such as "Makedonsko Devojce" and "Yugoslavijo" can similarily be traced to pop recordings issued in the Republic of Macedonia. I listened to some of these songs broadcast from Radio Skopje on the radio while in Florina. In one taxi ride with a Slavic Macedonian driver, as soon as we were safely outside of town, he cranked up the volume on his radio when the politically-charged song "Nema Drugi Makedonija" (There is no other Macedonia) came on the radio.

4 These three villages are located southeast of Florina. Lithoxoou (in Koufis, 1994, p. 61) lists these three Florina villages as Albanian-speaking villages. In regard to costumes, notes in the Folk Museum in Florina say Albanian costumes were worn in the villages of Lehovo, Drossopigi and Flambouro. Hatzimichali says: "The costume of the villages Drossopigi and Flambouro, (which) has similarities with that of Epirus, reinforcing the theory that the inhabitants of these villages came originally from Epirus." Hatzimichali, n.d., p. 282. In 1904, the Greek Epirot martyr Paul Melas organized Greek resistance in the Florina villages of Neret (now Polypótamos), Negovan (now Flambouro), and Belkameni (now Drossopigi). Christian Cham Albanians who fought on the side of the Greeks may account, in part, for Albanian cultural influence here. See Ruches (1967), p. 94-5.

5 According to Slavic immigrants in the U.S., the name Levendikos for this dance is a fairly recent appellation. People in Florina never knew the dance by this name, nor did they know the name Gerondikos. These Hellenized names were adopted in recent decades by Simos Constandinou and others for political reasons.

6 The precise meter can vary depending on the tune and the way each band interprets the rhythm. Ethnomusicologist Mark Forry conducted an unpublished study in which he measured the exact beat patterns of one particular piece of music, and he concluded that, though the meter tended to vary considerably during the slow part of the piece, when the tempo got up to speed, the meter became a steady 12. (Private communication.) Also, in the last few years, a few newer recordings have emerged from Florina that are in a more up-beat tempo. While you can still hear the basic S+Q+Q, S+Q pulses, another way of conceptualizing or writing them is in alternating measures of a "Dajcovo" 9/16 and a "Rucenitsa" 7/16. This substantiates the premise that the older recordings are the offspring of the Albanian Berati, which is a genre that can be various meters but often is in the alternating 7/8 and 5/8 measures, sometimes switched. In contrast, the newer recordings in Bulgarian additive meters are influenced by pop tunes coming from the Republic of Macedonia and played by young Slavic-speaking musicians who are no longer influenced by the older Albanian musical styles.

7 For music of the Voiou region, see Karas, Simon, and Vouras, Mary, (Songs of Western Macedonia), SDNM109, Society for the Dissemination of National Music, Athens. (1974).

8 For example, "Xhamadani I Trimnisë" ("The Hero’s Jacket"), from North Eastern Albania, tells of the Albanian hero Mic Sokoli who died fighting the Turks in the 19th Century, and "Knojnë Pushkët Nëpër Kulla" ("The Rifles Sing Among the Houses"), from Dibër. Both are heroic war ballads of the Gegs sung in 12/8 (3+2, 3+2+2). (These recordings are from the private collection of Ian Price.) Pop songs, such as "Tefik Çanga," are also in this meter. Reineck, Janet, cassette, Songs and Dances from Kosovo, Dept.of Anthropology, UC Berkeley, Berkeley, CA. One traditional song from North-central Albania, "Martaneshin S’un e Shtroj" (Martanesh Will Not Be Subjugated), alternates between (3+2+2, 3+2) and (3+2, 3+2+2). Price, Ian, CD, Drita Albanian Folk Ensemble, Los Angeles, CA.(1993).

9 For examples, see Leibman, Robert Henry, LP, Traditional Tosk Songs and Dances from the Lake Prespa Area.

10 Psihountas, Marika, unpublished video of Mazoxi seminar in Crete, Los Angeles, CA. (1992). By "choreographed," I mean a choreographic composition made up of a fixed series of movements designed for presentational purposes. Though the movements may have derived from improvisations, they are no longer spontaneous variations. This process tends to have a homogenizing effect on the dance.

11 It seems curious to me that old people do not dance in this region, and I believe this is an area for further investigation.

12 Leibman (1992).

13 The names Beraçe (Albanian), Berance (Slavic Macedonian) Beratis (Greek) and Beratiko (Greek) all mean "from Berat," a town in central Albania, to the west of Florina. The dances most likely have acquired these names because the musicians have used them to denote the borrowing of Albanian melodies. It should not be assumed that the dances themselves derive from Berat. (This insight is from Jane Sugarman). Tunes with these names are also played in other musical meters. Various Beratis tunes are known in Greece in 7/8 and 8/8 (3+2+3) meters. Albanian Beratçes are also played in 7/8, and some older versions are known in 25/8 (7+7+11) meters.

14 "When the music strikes up and the dancers begin to move, with which foot do they begin and in which direction do they head? To the right or to the left. Forward or back? ... It turns out that the answer to this question is not the same throughout the Balkans and that it can represent an extremely significant statement about the cultural identity of the dancers. ... Most of the dances from Bulgaria, Greece and Albania begin with movement on the right foot to the right." - Leibman (1992), pp. 222-223. See also Holden and Vouras (1965, 1976) p. 6. Zervós dances occur in various regions of Greece, but they also travel to the left, or clockwise. Beratis travels to the right.

15 According to an early British ethnographer, A.L. Lloyd, on Folk Music of Bulgaria, 12T107, Topic Records Limited, London (1964), Eleno Mome (Elena, my girl) originated in Pleven, North Bulgaria. Katzarova-Kukudova and Djenev (1958, 1976), p. 25, explain that Eleno Mome spread throughout Bulgaria after World War I. It was one of many dances that became diffused throughout different ethnic communities in Constantinople. Greek names for the dance are Kori Eleni or Elenitsa.

16 Video of Moslem Albanian wedding in London, Ontario, Canada, filmed by Jane Sugarman and Eran Fraenkel, June 28, 1986.

17 "It is a Greek dance brought to the village (Alona) after 1912." Koufis (1994), p. 100. Koufis doesn’t distinguish between the music and the dance. Ironically, though the song celebrates the expulsion of Bulgarians, the dance itself (Maritsa) originally came from Bulgaria.

18 The frequency observation comes from an American observer, Robert Gardner, who visited Alona on August 15, 1994, and is verified by viewing a video he shot there.

19 "Tsotsou" is a family name in Alona. The Tsotsou brothers are non-professional musicians. See also Koufis (1994), p. 63, 81, 144. Other dances, such as Subovoto and Stamkovoto, are variations of Pušteno named after individual dancers who preferred and stylized the dance. Koufis (1994), p. 87.

20 Koufis (1994) names 16 dances from Alona, pp. 80-102.

21 Regarding cultural repression, see Human Rights Watch/Helsinki (1994) and Danforth, Loring M. (1995). For an in-depth study on dance and politics in Florina, Greece, see a Ph.D. dissertation, "Visualising Culture - Demonstrating Identity: Dance Performance and Identity Politics in a Border Region in Northern Greece," by Ioannis Manos:


Danforth, Loring M., 1995 The Macedonian Conflict, Ethnic Nationalism in a Transnational World. Princeton University Press, Princeton, NJ.

Drandakis, Lefteris, 1993 Improvisation in the Greek Folk Dances, Athens.

Hatzimichali, Angelik, n.d. The Greek Folk Costume - The Costume of Florina, Benaki Museum, Melissa Publishing House, Athens.

Holden, Rickey, and Vouras, Mary 1965, 1976 Greek Folk Dances, Folkraft, Newark, NJ.

Human Rights Watch/Helsinki, 1994 Denying Ethnic Identity, The Macedonians of Greece, New York.

Jelavich, Barbara, 1983 History of the Balkans, Twentieth Century. Vol. 2, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge and NY.

Katzarova-Kukudova, Raina and Djenev, Kiril, 1958 & 1976. Bulgarian Folk Dances, Slavica Publishers, Inc. Cambridge, MA.

Koufis, Pavlos, 1994 Laografika, Alona - Armensko Florina, Athens.

Leibman, Robert Henry, 1992 Dancing Bears and Purple Transformations: The Structure of Dance in the Balkans, University of Pennsylvania.

Lithoxoou, Dimitri, 1991 Minority Question and National Consciousness in Greece. Liviathan. Cited in Koufis (1994).

Norwich, John Julius, 1996 Byzantium, The Early Centuries, Alfred A. Knopf, New York.

Ruches, P.J., 1967 Albanian Historical Folksongs, 1716-1943, Argonaut Inc., Chicago.

Syllabus for The 20th Annual Aman Institute, Los Angeles, CA. 1996

An earlier version of this manuscript was first published in Greek in the Proceedings of the 11th International Conference on Dance Research, "Dance Around the Mediterranean" by the International Organization for Folk Art (I.O.F.A./D.O.L.T.), a division of UNESCO. Athens, Greece, July, 1997.

(Note: Some diacritical marks necessary to write Slavic languages correctly in the Roman alphabet were unavailable in web fonts, as were equally necessary accent marks to write Greek correctly, in preparation of this manuscript.)

© Copyright, 1997

Last revised: August 16, 2008.

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