The Rroma
Lev Tcherenkov, Stéphane Laederich

The Rroma

Otherwise known as Gypsies, Gitanos, Tsiganes, Tigani, Çingene, Zigeuner, Bohémiens, Travellers, Fahrende etc.

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Rroma are usually presented in a fragmentary and parcelled fashion, after all one has Rroma, Sinti, and Cale and there are hundreds of so-called groups. The social organisation of these groups, their language, traditions - all are presented as being fundamentally different. Thus, as a result, one gains the impression that the Rroma - or Gypsies - are not at all one ethnocultural minority but a mosaic of different ones.

The book's concept can be summarised as a presentation of a unified view of the various Rroma groups, their history and culture. It regroups the various groups into four broad metagroups, based mostly on their common language and historical experience and we are underlining the common points rather than presenting the differences and small local variations. This overview in a single book of all the various Rroma groups is a first in the literature.

The main tool - and in this, this book differs from all other written so far - is the extensive use of Rromanes - the language of the Rroma - and its various dialects as well as of other languages to analyse and present a clear picture of the history of the Rroma from their Indian origins to the current times. Whenever the lack of documents and written traces about Rroma and their ancestors forces one in the realm of conjectures, the book turns to Rromanes as a thread and as a hint as the layered structure of this language, with various layers of new acquisitions and lexems provides one with the perfect analysis tool. Hence, the conclusions are sometimes different than the ones of other experts.

The entire book, gives Rroma a voice and, the comments and information from over hundred and fifty of them are included here. The book's aim is to present a European minority and culture to both the general public and specialists alike.  

Bevorstehende Veranstaltungen

Bibliographische Angaben

Seitenanzahl 1098 arabisch, 34 römisch
Zeichnungen 24
Format 15.5 x 22.5 cm
Bindung Buch, Broschiert
ISBN 978-3-7965-2090-7
Erscheinungsdatum 06.12.2004


Lev Tcherenkov, born 1936, is one of the best specialists in Rromanes, and his over forty-five years of experience and life with Rroma gives him both the overview and the experience needed for this book. He has written several articles on Rroma, their language and traditions. He speaks Rromanes - in all its variants - as well as Russian, Polish, Lithuanian, Latvian, Slovakian, Czech, Serbo-Croatian, Hungarian, German, French, Italian, Spanish, English, Greek, and Turkish and understands several other languages. He studied at Moscow University and he currently works as a senior researcher in the Russian Russian Research Institute for Cultural and Natural Heritage «D.S.Likhatchev» in Moscow.

Stephane Laederich, born 1961, has been working for the last ten years with Rroma all over Eastern Europe on behalf of various nongovernmental organisations and in search of Rroma musicians for productions in the West. He speaks Rromanes, English, German, French, and Russian and understands several other languages. He studied in Zurich and obtained his Ph.D. in 1989 from Boston University, after which he taught at various US and European universities. He is currently the executive director of the Rroma Foundation in Zurich.