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Workshop - The Real and the Imagined in the Contemporary Balkans

In lieu of completing their fellowship term (February  1st – June 30th 2012), the NIAS Theme Group The Real and the Imagined in the Contemporary Balkans will be giving a presentation of their research results, to be held on June 19th, 2012, between 10.00 and 18.00, at NIAS.


About the Theme Group

The project “The Real and the Imagined in the Contemporary Balkans” centres on contemporary social, cultural and symbolic realities and experiences in the former Yugoslav territories, and these territories’ communication with the West. The ‘Balkans’ in our title is simultaneously a ‘symbolic continent’ (Bakic-Hayden & Hayden, 1992) against which the regional and the European imaginary and self-imaginary is continuously redefined; a territory whose history of war and violence is only one relevant history and it is interwoven with the histories of socialism and post-socialist transformations; and a social and cultural space where the issues of justice, democracy and participation inside and outside its borders are being actively negotiated and transformed far beyond the classical political domains.

Individual Theme Group research projects address cultural and symbolic processes by which competing histories and identities are continuously re-imagined and re-constructed, be it in personal narratives of migrants, in courtrooms, in rooms of religious worship, in offices of politicians, or in concert and cinema halls. The Theme Group argues that nationalism is still a relevant force, but other social dynamics and the narratives about them generated by globalisation and the re-shaping of Europe, have significant influence on individual countries and the region as a whole, as well as on specific groups of the population. 


About the Speakers

Presentations by, amongst others:

Dino Abazović: The Politics, Religion and the Reconciliation Issue in Bosnia and Herzegovina
Marlies Glasius: Expression of Justice or Political Trials? Discursive Battles in the Karadzic Case
Maria Koinova: Diasporas and Contextualized Transnationalism: Bosnian Diaspora in the Netherlands and its Transnational Linkages to Bosnia-Herzegovina
Dubravka Žarkov: Cinematic Ontologies of War: Representing Bosnia and the (Inter)National Self
Vjekoslav Perica:  Nations vs. Generations – Symbolic Discourses of Heroism in post-Yugoslav States
Mitja Velikonja: Rock’n’Retro – Yugoslav and Partisan Motifs in Contemporary Slovenian Music

The complete programme and detailed list of guest speakers and participants can be found here.

If you are interested in attending the seminar, please contact Dubravka Žarkov for more information.