Skip to main content
×
×
Home

Producing and Maintaining Minority “Groupness” through State Effects: Teaching in Croatian in Serbia

  • Andrew Hodges (a1)
Abstract

This article ethnographically examines the situation surrounding the teaching of Croatian in Serbia. It analyzes the discourses and efforts of minority activists in promoting Croatian culture and language in various ways, specifically drawing on fieldwork conducted in a school where three mutually intelligible language varieties—Serbian, Croatian, and Bunjevac—were taught. Instruction in Croatian has been offered in Serbia since 2002 through a minority rights framework. However, prior to the wars of Yugoslav succession in the 1990s, those identifying as Croat were not considered a minority in [the] Socialist Yugoslavia, as it was a South Slavic federation. The number of children enrolling in Croatian minority programs in Serbia is small, and of those who attend them, a significant number do not come to identify as Croatian, a fact that many minority activists consider to be a problem. The article is organized in four parts. First, the context and various perspectives are introduced through an ethnographic vignette. Second, the research context and legal and institutional framework are introduced. Activist perspectives are then discussed, including tensions present. Finally, Michel-Rolph Trouillot’s concept of “state effects” is presented and elaborated with respect to the case study, and the various efforts of activists in trying to promote and/or maintain Croatian “groupness” are evaluated.

Copyright
Corresponding author
*Corresponding author. Email: hodges@ios-regensburg.de
References
Hide All
Althusser, Louis. 2006. “Ideology and Ideological State Apparatuses (Notes towards an Investigation).” In The Anthropology of the State: A Reader, edited by Aradhana Sharma and Anil Gupta, 86111. Malden, MA: John Wiley & Sons.
Anderson, Benedict. 2006. Imagined Communities: Reflections on the Origin and Spread of Nationalism. London, UK: Verso
Archer, Rory, and Rácz, Krisztina. 2012. “Šverc and the Šinobus: Small-Scale Smuggling in Vojvodina.” In Subverting Borders: Doing Research on Smuggling and Small-Scale Trade, edited by Bettina Bruns and Judith Miggelbank, 5983. Wiesbaden, Germany: Springer.
Belić, Bojan. 2014. “Bunyev (S): A Linguistic Frontier to Be?Filoloske Pripombe 12 (1): 603618.
Billig, Michael. 1995. Banal Nationalism. London, UK: Sage Publications.
Bourdieu, Pierre. 1991. Language and Symbolic Power. Cambridge, UK: Polity Press.
Brubaker, Rogers. 2004. Ethnicity without Groups. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
Černelić, Milana. 2005. “Pristupi Istraživanju Bunjevačkih Identiteta.” Studia Ethnologica Croatica 17: 2549.
Davis, Christina. 2012. “‘Is Jaffna Tamil the Best?’ Producing ‘Legitimate’ Language in a Multilingual Sri Lankan School.” Journal of Linguistic Anthropology 22 (2): 6182.
Đurašković, Stevo. 2015. “Nation-Building in Franjo Tuđman’s Political Writings.” Politička Misao 51 (5): 5879.
Đurašković, Stevo. 2016. “National Identity-Building and the ‘Ustaša-Nostalgia’ in Croatia: The Past That Will Not Pass.” Nationalities Papers 44 (5): 772788.
Gellner, Ernest. 2006. Nations and Nationalism. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press.
Helms, Elissa. 2013. Innocence and Victimhood: Gender, Nation, and Women’s Activism in Postwar Bosnia-Herzegovina. Madison, WI: University of Wisconsin Press.
Hodges, Andrew, Abercrombie, Amelia, Balažev, Marina, Costa, James, Kapović, Mate, Marković, Jelena, Petrović, Tanja, and Spasić, Ivana. 2016. “Croatian Language Standardization and the Production of Nationalized Political Subjects through Language? Perspectives from the Social Sciences and Humanities.” Etnološka Tribina: Godišnjak Hrvatskog Etnološkog Društva 46 (39): 345.
Hodges, Andrew. 2017. “The Importance of Being Patriotic: Enregistered Connections in Croatian Minority Activism.” East European Politics and Societies 31 (3): 615636.
Hromadžić, Azra. 2015. “Dissatisfied Citizens: Ethnonational Governance, Teachers’ Strike and Professional Solidarity in Mostar, Bosnia–Herzegovina.” European Politics and Society 16 (3): 429446.
Ilić, Marija, and Belić, Bojan. 2014. “Eine neue Sprache entsteht, die bunjewakische ‘Sprache’ oder ‘Sprachmund’ in der Grundschule.” In Südosteuropa Jahrbuch, Band 40, edited by Christian Voß and Wolfgang Dahmen, 93114, Munich: Verlag Otto Sagner.
Jansen, Stef. 2016. “First as Tragedy, Then as Teleology: The Politics/People Dichotomy in the Ethnography of Post-Yugoslav Nationalization.” Conflict and Society 2 (1): 164180.
Kapović, Mate. 2011. “Language, Ideology and Politics in Croatia.” Slavia Centralis IV/2, 4556.
Lane, Pia. 2011. “The Birth of the Kven Language in Norway: Emancipation through State Recognition.” International Journal of the Sociology of Language 209: 5774.
Larson, Jonathan. 2009. “Cosmologies of Criticism: Taste, (Dis) Trust, and Uses of Literature in Slovak Secondary Schools.” Critique of Anthropology 29 (4): 447469.
Madacki, Saša, and Karamehić, Mia. 2012. Dvije Škole Pod Istim Krovom: Studija O Segregaciji U Obrazovanju. Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina: Centar za ljudska prava Univerziteta u Sarajevu Asocijacija Alumni Centra za interdisciplinarne postdiplomske studije (ACIPS).
Malkki, Liisa. 1992. “National Geographic: The Rooting of Peoples and the Territorialization of National Identity among Scholars and Refugees.” Cultural Anthropology 7 (1): 2444.
Milroy, James. 2001. “Language Ideologies and the Consequences of Standardization.” Journal of Sociolinguistics 5 (4): 530555.
Nagel, Thomas. 1986. The View from Nowhere. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.
Peti-Stantić, Anita. 2008. “Jezik naš i/ili njihov.” Vježbe Iz poredbene povijesti južnoslavenskih standardizacijskih procesa. Zagreb, Croatia: Srednja Europa.
Rácz, Krisztina. 2012. “By the Rivers of Babylon: Multiculturalism in Vivo in Vojvodina/Vajdaság.” Jezikoslovlje XIII (2): 585599.
Raič, Aleksandar, and Ostojić, Suzana. 2013. “Bunjevci and Croats in Serbia: Problem of Democratic Solution of an Ignored Ethnic Conflict.” In National Question in Central Europe: Democratic Responses to Unresolved National and Ethnic Conflicts, edited by András Lőrincz, 121134. Budapest: Institute for Cultural Relations Policy.
Schieffelin, Bambi B., Woolard, Kathryn A., and Kroskrity, Paul V.. 1998. Language Ideologies: Practice and Theory. New York: Oxford University Press.
Silverstein, Michael. 1979. “Language Structure and Linguistic Ideology.” In The Elements: A Parasession on Linguistic Units and Levels, edited by Paul Clyne, William Hanks, and Carol Hofbauer, 193247, Chicago, IL: Chicago Linguistic Society.
Trouillot, Michel-Rolph. 2001. “The Anthropology of the State in the Age of Globalization: Close Encounters of the Deceptive Kind.” Current Anthropology 42 (1): 125138.
Unkovski-Korica, Vladimir. 2016. “World War II and the National Question: The Origins of the Autonomous Status of Vojvodina in Yugoslavia.” Europe-Asia Studies 68 (10): 17121735.
Vuković, Petar. 2010. “Kako Skrbiti Za Hrvatski Jezik U Vojvodini?” In Godišnjak Za Znanstvena Istraživanja ZKVH-A, edited by Tomislav Žigmanov, 79103. Subotica, Serbia: Zavod za kulturu vojvođanskih Hrvat.
Vuković, Petar. 2014. “Jezični Program Bačkih Bunjevaca Nehrvata.” In Bunjevci u Vremenskom i Prostornom Kontekstu, edited by Jadranska Černelić and Milena Černelić, 161176. Zagreb: FF press.
Woolard, Kathryn A. 1985. “Language Variation and Cultural Hegemony: Toward an Integration of Sociolinguistic and Social Theory.” American Ethnologist 12 (4): 738748.
Woolard, Kathryn A. 2005. “Language and Identity Choice in Catalonia: The Interplay of Contrasting Ideologies of Linguistic Authority.” University of California San Diego Linguistic Anthropology Working Papers.
Žigmanov, Tomislav. 2011. “Osvajanje Slobode: Hrvati U Vojvodini Deset Godina Nakon Listopadskog Prevrata 2000.” Subotica, Serbia: Hrvatsko Akademsko Društvo.
Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Nationalities Papers
  • ISSN: 0090-5992
  • EISSN: 1465-3923
  • URL: /core/journals/nationalities-papers
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×

Keywords

Metrics

Altmetric attention score

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed