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University Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Resources for the Study of the Macedonian Language: Home

Supporting materials for students in their first year of studying Macedonian

Country Overview

 

From CIA - The World Factbook.  Accessed online at https://www.cia.gov/the-world-factbook/countries/north-macedonia/ on January 6, 2021.

 
Introduction ::Macedonia
 

North Macedonia gained its independence peacefully from Yugoslavia in 1991 under the name of "Macedonia." Greek objection to the new country’s name, insisting it implied territorial pretensions to the northern Greek province of Macedonia, and democratic backsliding for several years stalled the country’s movement toward Euro-Atlantic integration. Immediately after Macedonia declared independence, Greece sought to block Macedonian efforts to gain UN membership if the name "Macedonia" was used. The country was eventually admitted to the UN in 1993 as "The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia," and at the same time it agreed to UN-sponsored negotiations on the name dispute. In 1995, Greece lifted a 20-month trade embargo and the two countries agreed to normalize relations, but the issue of the name remained unresolved and negotiations for a solution continued. Over time, the US and over 130 other nations recognized Macedonia by its constitutional name, Republic of Macedonia. Ethnic Albanian grievances over perceived political and economic inequities escalated into a conflict in 2001 that eventually led to the internationally brokered Ohrid Framework Agreement, which ended the fighting and established guidelines for constitutional amendments and the creation of new laws that enhanced the rights of minorities. In January 2018, the government adopted a new law on languages, which elevated the Albanian language to an official language at the national level, with the Macedonian language remaining the sole official language in international relations. Relations between ethnic Macedonians and ethnic Albanians remain complicated, however.

North Macedonia's pro-Western government has used its time in office since 2017 to sign a historic deal with Greece in June 2018 to end the name dispute and revive Skopje's NATO and EU membership prospects. This followed a nearly three-year political crisis that engulfed the country but ended in June 2017 following a six-month-long government formation period after a closely contested election in December 2016. The crisis began after the 2014 legislative and presidential election, and escalated in 2015 when the opposition party began releasing wiretapped material that revealed alleged widespread government corruption and abuse. Although an EU candidate since 2005, North Macedonia has yet to open EU accession negotiations. The country still faces challenges, including fully implementing reforms to overcome years of democratic backsliding and stimulating economic growth and development. In June 2018, Macedonia and Greece signed the Prespa Accord whereby the Republic of Macedonia agreed to change its name to the Republic of North Macedonia. Following ratification by both countries, the agreement went in to force on 12 February 2019. North Macedonia signed an accession protocol to become a NATO member state in February 2019.

Geography ::Macedonia
 
Southeastern Europe, north of Greece
 
 
41 50 N, 22 00 E
 
 
total: 25,713 sq km
country comparison to the world: 149
land: 25,433 sq km
water: 280 sq km
 
slightly larger than Vermont
 
total: 766 km
border countries: Albania 151 km, Bulgaria 148 km, Greece 246 km, Kosovo 159 km,
Serbia 62 km
 
0 km (landlocked)
 
none (landlocked)
 
warm, dry summers and autumns; relatively cold winters with heavy snowfall
 
mountainous territory covered with deep basins and valleys; three large lakes, each
divided by a frontier line; country bisected by the Vardar River
 
lowest point: Vardar River 50 m
highest point: Golem Korab (Maja e Korabit) 2,764 m
 
low-grade iron ore, copper, lead, zinc, chromite, manganese, nickel, tungsten, gold, silver,
asbestos, gypsum, timber, arable land
 
arable land: 22.01%
permanent crops: 1.79%
other: 76.2% (2005)
 
550 sq km (2003)
 
6.4 cu km (2001)
 
total: 2.27
per capita: 1,118 cu m/yr (2000)
 
high seismic risks
 
air pollution from metallurgical plants
 
party to: Air Pollution, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol,
Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer
Protection, Wetlands  signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
 
 
landlocked; major transportation corridor from Western and Central Europe to Aegean
Sea and Southern Europe to Western Europe
 

Intensive Language Programs

The American Association for Teachers of Slavic and East European Languages (AATSEEL) website has a page that describes intensive programs in Slavic and East European languages as well as in the languages of the Republics of the former Soviet Union. The listings include those programs offered in U.S. (and some Canadian) colleges and universities as well as in programs abroad. This is a free service provided by AATSEEL to such programs.

Each language has its own page, and programs are divided into the following categories: Summer Programs in the U.S., Summer Programs Abroad, and Semester/Year Programs Abroad. Information is added to this page as it is received, so check frequently for updates.

The website has a table which allows you to click on the language you are interested in, and it directs you to links to the program/school websites teaching the language.