Accepted paper:

Performing Yugonostalgia in the realms of post-memory

Author:

Ana Letunic (Academy of Dramatic Art )

Paper short abstract:

This paper analyses how the phenomenon of nostalgia for Yugoslavia among younger generations, that do not have a lived experience of the former country, can be an agent of liberation from oppression of contemporary hegemonic discourses and practices.

Paper long abstract:

The starting point of the research was the interest in the phenomenon of nostalgia for Yugoslavia among younger generations that do not have a lived experience of the former country. While most authors dismiss nostalgia as 'false' and 'irrelevant', my argument is that Yugonostalgia can be a resistance strategy since, during the 1990's, the former Yugoslav countries underwent the 'terror of forgetting' in order for new nationalisms to arise and most of the socialist memory was 'confiscated'. In the first part of the paper, I provide the reader with the historical context surrounding Yugoslavia, the formation of the pan-Yugoslav identity and its decay. Another argument I present is that the project of Yugoslavia in itself was a nostalgic idea since it contained desires of a viable supranational unity. Further on, I analyse the concepts surrounding nostalgia and post-memory, mostly relying on work by Svetlana Boym and Marriane Hirsch. After reflecting on the rise of regional artworks based on post-memory I find that their particularities lie in the narrative transition from macro to micro histories and the questioning of the East/West binary.

panel P005
Forms of memory transitions: processes and possible outcomes