Mahalle

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Ser-Shahar mahalle in Ordubad (Azerbaijan) with view of the mosque of the 18th century S@rs@h@r m@scidi. Ordubad s@h@ri 01.JPG
Ser-Shahar mahalle in Ordubad (Azerbaijan) with view of the mosque of the 18th century

Mahalle (Arabic : محلةmaḥallä, Persian : محلهmaḥallä) (abbreviated mh. or mah.) is an Arabic word, adopted into Turkish (mahalle), Albanian (mahallë or mahalla, or mëhallë or mëhalla), Bengali (মহল্লা, moholla) Bulgarian (махала, makhala), Greek (μαχαλάς, mahalás), and Romanian (mahala), which is variously translated as district, quarter, ward, or "neighborhood." [2] It is an official administrative unit in many Middle Eastern countries. In the Ottoman Empire, the mahalle was the smallest administrative entity. The mahalle is generally perceived to play an important role in identity formation, with the local mosque and the local coffee house as the main social institutions. It lies at the intersection of private family life and the public sphere. Important community-level management functions are performed through mahalle solidarity, such as religious ceremonies, life-cycle rituals, resource management and conflict resolution. [3]

The mahalle is represented in the municipality and government by its muhtar. The muhtarlık (the office of muhtar) has been designed as the smallest administrative office, with representative and enforcement powers at the local level. However, in some cases, the muhtar acts as not only the representative of the government towards the community but also the head of the community towards the government and subverts official government policies through intricate face-to-face mahalle-level relationships. [3]

It is also the smallest urban administrative division in Iran. Each city is divided into a few Mantaqes, (Persian : منطقه), which is then divided into Nahiyes (Persian : ناحیه), further subdivided to Mahalle (Persian : محله), usually having a Mahalle council (Persian : شورای محله), a quarter mosque, and a small parkette.

In September 2017 a Turkish-based association refers to the historical Mahalle by organizing a festival with the title Mahalla in the frame of parallel events of the 15th Istanbul Biennial. This festival in Istanbul features cultural initiatives of the civil society and artists from the Middle East and Europe, the Balkan and Turkey. Against the background of the ongoing migration crisis all participants of the festival are concerned in their work in various ways with themes of hospitality, identity formation, homelessness, migration and fluctuation, the changing of an existing order and the dissolution of borders. The second Mahalla Festival took place 2018 in the frame of Valletta European Capital of Culture in Malta. [4]

See also

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Ak Kavuk, Nicosia Place in Nicosia District, Cyprus

Ak Kavuk is a Neighbourhood, Quarter, Mahalla or Parish of Nicosia, Cyprus and the mosque thereof. It is spelled as Akkavuk in Turkish and Ακ Καβούκ or Άμπου Καβούκ in Greek. Both alternative names appear in English. Jeffery uses both, while the Cyprus Gazette in 1923 uses the form "Abou Kavouk".

A village is the smallest settlement unit in Turkey.

Administrative divisions of Nicosia

Nicosia within the city limits is divided into 29 administrative units, according to the latest census. This unit is termed in English as quarter, neighbourhood, parish, enoria or mahalla. These units are: Ayios Andreas, Trypiotis, Nebethane, Tabakhane, Phaneromeni, Ayios Savvas, Omerie, Ayios Antonios, St. John, Taht-el-kale, Chrysaliniotissa, Ayios Kassianos (Kafesli), Kaïmakli, Panayia, St Constantine & Helen, Ayioi Omoloyites, Arab Ahmet, Yeni Jami, Omorfita, Ibrahim Pasha, Mahmut Pasha, Abu Kavouk, St. Luke, Abdi Chavush, Iplik Pazar and Korkut Effendi, Ayia Sophia, Haydar Pasha, Karamanzade, and Yenişehir/Neapolis. Some of these units were previously independent Communities. Ayioi Omoloyites was annexed in 1944, while Kaïmakli and Omorfita were annexed in 1968. Pallouriotissa, also annexed in 1968, was subsequently divided into the neighbourhoods of Panayia, and St Constantine & Helen.

References

  1. Саламзаде А. В. Проблемы сохранения и реконструкции исторических городов Азербайджана. — Б.: Элм, 1979. — С. 57. — 138 с.
  2. Mahallenin Anlamı Archived 2012-02-07 at the Wayback Machine (in Turkish)
  3. 1 2 uludağ sözlük (vbulletin dictionary)(in Turkish)
  4. "Mahalla Festival". InEnArt. Retrieved 2017-08-30.