عنوان مقاله [English]
This paper aims at studying the semantic system of mourning in Twelver Shiism as an important roots of Shiite identity, based on remembering the tragic aspects of its political and social history. A ritual which, apart its religious aspect, and in addition to its individual spiritual functions, has certain serious and significant social and political functions. The question is about the semantic system that nurtures and reproduces mourning as a social fact and about the social and political functions this ritualistic act has, apart from its individual spiritual functions.
The author seeks to answer these questions from the viewpoint of social constructionism which is concerned with social phenomena, not as obvious matters which are essential to society, but with respect to their particular meaning system and the factors that have created their semantic foundations.
Mourning is not a mere religious habit in this semantic system, but is rather a practice with these social and political functions: reproducing identity foundations, redefining and highlighting identity differences and distinctions, reproducing the concepts of Imamate and hope (hope of the return of a avenger who is a saviour), updating and reproducing the concepts of tyranny and tyrant in the political literature of Shiism, following the innocent Imams, forming and strengthening the spirit of martyrdom and martyrdom-craving, increasing inner coherence and solidarity, producing and maintaining political excitement and mobilisation (constant stimulation of religious and political feelings), forming and propagating a particular form of religiosity, enhancing the collective memory of Shiites.