Under communism, Tirana’s madrasa was shut down for 25 years. It reopened in 1990.

In Albania, Madrasas Even the Secular Love

A Turkish-based Islamic movement committed to interfaith dialogue, globalization, and making money is changing the face of the country’s school system.

Aspects of Durres: The 15th-century Venetian Tower in the foreground with the new building on the site of Prince William of Wied's home behind it. The cranes of the port are visible at top right.

Ancient Durres Battles to Preserve its Past

Unchecked growth in Albania’s Adriatic port city leaves history in the construction dust.

The ever-bustling Istiklal pedestrian street.

Turkey and the EU: Between hope and disillusion

Turkish society benefits more from the preparations for joining the European Union than it would from membership itself. The EU needs a prosperous Turkey more than Turkey needs the Union. In Istanbul, you often hear such views expressing both hope and disillusion in potential EU membership.

Srdja Popovic helped start the movement that overthrew Slobodan Milosevic by setting a turkey loose on the streets of Belgrade. Now he travels the world helping other activists.

The Exporters of Revolution

How the former student activists who toppled Yugoslav strongman Slobodan Milosevic are teaching the world’s oppressed to rise up.

Turkey: Where tradition and technology flourish

Turkey: Where tradition and technology flourish

Part 1 in a series on Turkey: Technological revolution and digital literacy Turkey is a predominantly Muslim country of 75 million with a 7 percent annual economic growth. Its inhabitants consider themselves to be a part of Europe and past surveys have shown that a majority of people want to belong to the European Union. [...]

Baba Mondi is the spiritual leader of the 3 million members of the Bektashi sect of Sufi Islam. Photo by Swiatek Wojtkowiak.

Candy from a Dervish

TIRANA | Baba Mondi foists one sweet after another upon me, as if this is his way of convincing me that Islam – or at least Sufism – is a religion of peace, and that we shouldn’t treat all Muslims as fanatics.

Many of Sarajevo's buildings still bear the scars of war.

Sarajevo Saviors

SARAJEVO | When Jovan Divjak walks along Sarajevo’s main street, Ferhadija, everyone recognizes him. To passers-by, this smartly dressed man in a white shirt is like a magnet. Everyone wants to be photographed with him, shake his hand, get his autograph. Yet Divjak is neither an artist nor a politician. He is an army general. [...]

The huge King Fahd Mosque in Sarajevo was built with money from the Saudi government. Photo by Aktron/Wikimedia Commons.

Bosnia’s Armies of God

They are everywhere. Often lavishly built and ridiculously tall, some look like architectural pranks. Sometimes they are built on former school or kindergarten grounds or in the front yards of houses whose owners have been chased off. Often they glitter in their unseemlyopulence right in the middle of a neighborhood that has obviously seen better days. Very [...]

Women’s World

Women’s World

Some say that nowhere in the world do women enjoy a better life than here – although Iceland’s reputation as a “women’s paradise” seems an inaccurate cliché since the country is hardly the Garden of Eden. Nonetheless, the position of Icelandic women, as well as their male counterparts, is quite remarkable.

The Fifth Attempt

The Fifth Attempt

After four failed bids, one-time nationalist stalwart Tomislav Nikolic is finally Serbia’s president. Perhaps the biggest concern accompanying Tomislav Nikolic’s election as Serbia’s president is his unreadability. The nationalist politician who said five years ago that he would rather see Serbia become a Russian province than a European Union member assured the West during the recent campaign [...]