CONVERSION TO ISLAM IN THE REGION OF CANDIA DURING THE SECOND HALF OF THE 17TH CENTURY
Conversion to Islam in the region of Candia during the years of the Cretan War and the period after the surrender of the city is a remarkable field of historical research because it refers to a “movement” not only from one religious identity to another but also from one religious community to another and from one tax regime to the other. The purpose of the announcement is the study of conversion to Islam in the region of Candia, focusing on the social and economic mobility of the local people. Τhe role of Islam in the formation of the Muslim community will be highlighted and the issue of the geographical origin of the converts examined.
In the first part of the annoucement I focus on the main features of the religious “movement” according to Islamic law and I refer to the steps in the process to be followed by the convert.
In the second part of the annoucement I briefly analyze the factors of the social and economic mobility of non-Muslims and the reasons that motivated the local community. In the third part of the annoucement I focus on the historical sources where we can find a limited number of conversions to Islam.These records give us valuable information on the religious, socio-economic and geographical origin of the converts. Within this context, I will also analyze the issue of social inclusion: in what way and to what extent could the new Muslims participate in and contribute to the functioning of their new community.