Balcanis

BA, HR, MK, SI

Srdja Pavlovic looks at the cult of the paranormal that purveys Serbian society and argues that the current obsession with the supernatural is fuelled by the Serbian government as a distraction from its own shortcomings and failures.

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Bojana Kunst in this article looks at conceptualisations of the dancing body, by focusing on the problem of how the body of the Other is performed and how physicality can be understood as a way of performing. The physical, she concludes, is deeply connected with the question of representation.

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As all post-communist countries, the Balkans have been going undergoing profound transformations in the past decade that affect not only their political outlook but their social structures as well. Rastko Mocnic tracks some of the changes that are currently changing the sociological landscapes of the Balkans and questions the prevalent assumption that such transitions are the inevitable by-product of what the West refers to as “modernisation”.

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The different meanings attributed to the game of soccer in the recent decades in Slovenia are more than a reflection of the variable fortunes of Slovenian clubs and its national team. From this point of departure the author scrutinizes the most important shifts in the meaning of soccer in the country, arguing that these have more to do with existing relations of power between Slovenia’s ethnic majority and minorities, rather than with the game itself. The radical devaluation of soccer in the period between the late 1960s and late 1990s, for instance, could be interpreted as a means of saving the emerging Slovenian nationalist discourse from its threatening inconsistencies,whilst also legitimizing the existing ethnic cleavages in the Slovenian society. By now, its implications for inter-ethnic relations in Slovenia are no less important: Although the national team was to a significant extent comprised of first – or second generation immigrants, the Slovenian nationalist discourse almost completely disregarded this fact, and appropriated their success as a sign of typically “Slovenian” vitality.

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