chapter  3
19 Pages

The Copts

ByMario Apostolov

Although integrated into the body of the modern Egyptian nation, the Egyptian Christians (the Copts) have survived as a strong religious community, proud of its contributions to Christianity. The Copts are an inalienable element of Egyptian society; while other minorities were leaving Egypt after 1921, millions of Copts stayed. Yet since 1920 the Copts lingered between participatory nationalism and a rigid traditional identity, anchoured in their ecclesiastic institution. This ambiguity demonstrated by a religious minority in the Arab country that is closest to the image of a nation state is the main subject in this chapter.