“Greatˮ Bulgaria – Metaphor or (Possible) reality


Nikolay Poppetrov. “Great” Bulgaria – metaphor or (possible) reality Boundaries and content of a national project

Macedonian Review, 2016, № 2, p. 18-28

What is the concept of “Great Bulgariaˮ? Another metaphor, which politicians and publicists handle; concept to mobilize public opinion on various political purposes, outside of the borrowed or at least prevalent in external model (Greater German Reich) or felicitous term, behind which a never expressed but possible geopolitical project hides? Let us try to reconstruct the story. 

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 Widespread allegation of Bulgarian national claims after the First World War is bringing them to peaceful revision of the territorial clauses of the Neuilly Peace Treaty of November 27, 1919, ie to return by Romania of Southern Dobrudzha and by Yugoslavia of the Western outlands as well as giving a territorial outlet to the Aegean Sea. This understanding is found in numerous texts of politicians, journalists, researchers from the 20s and 30s of XX century, as well as Bulgarian history during the communist regime and after it – until now. Peaceful revision is identified by contemporaries also with achieving the primordial Bulgarian ethnic boundaries, within which also Macedonia enters, incidentally. These statements coincide with the popular play by the time between the two world wars: “We don’t give what is ours – we don’t want what belongs to others...ˮ 


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