Projects financed by the Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development of the Republic of Serbia :

- Project 177026

Cultural heritage and identity

The protection of the cultural heritage is one of the extremely current topics in the process of the formation of different identities, cultural politics and development strategies of the contemporary world. This is the reason why it is crucial to analyze on the one hand the way in which cultural heritage is defined and used, and on the other hand to research what is excluded from the process of preserving and representing the past experiences (in the other words, what is not cultural heritage). This theme unquestionably speaks about the ways in which the state, or any other type of community, wants to represent itself - to the others, and to its own members. Therefore the research of shaping, preserving and presenting what is considered to be cultural heritage is totally discursive, and consequently changeable. Accordingly, diachronic analysis of the way in which cultural heritage is conceptualized, gives the answers to the following questions: what did we want to be in certain periods (how did we want to look like) and how the strategies of identity and representation did change, as well as in which ways were they carried out in the legislation and in practice.

The special emphasis in this complex project will be on the discourses through which the images of the past have been constructed, and on the ways in which they correspond with the contemporary popular/high cultural patterns.

Leader: Lјiljana Gavrilović

Researchers: Miroslava Lukić-Krstanović, Lada Stevanović, Zorica Divac, Miroslava Malešević, Ivan Đorđević, Srđan Radović, Vesna Trifunović, Jovana Diković, Sonja Žakula, dr Marina Simić.

- Project 177027

Multiethnicity, multiculturalism, migrations – contemmporary processes

Multiethnicity and migrations, together with multiculturalism as one of »identity policies«, are strikingly important problems of contemporary world at the global level. Social organization of multiethnicities, multicultural policy, migrations which contribute ethic and cultural non-homogeneity, pose, above else, the questions of belonging / not-belonging, collective and individual rights and collective and individual identities. These questions essentially challenge the way in which nation state has been understood and has functioned from the 19th century until today. Both in Serbia and in the surrounding region, these questions are attributed with certain specificities depending on social-cultural context. The project shall deal with these issues from the perspective of ethnology – social and cultural anthropology, meaning that it shall focus on cultural processes, primarily the processes of construction of identities, everyday culture and life and subjective experiences of the protagonists in these complex processes. The aim of the project is to monitor various meanings and functions of (multi)ethnicity and migrations in post-socialism, i.e. in the time of transition, globalization and Euro-integration, first of all of the Serbian society. The focus of research on the society of Serbia in no way excludes other questions which enable comparisons and parallels involving the region, as well as the question of the diaspora – particularly the wave of emigration from Serbia / Yugoslavia during the 1990s and, in final instance, observation of ethnicity and migrations in the global context.

Leader: Mladena Prelić

Researchers: Miroslava Lukić-Krstanović, Mirjana Pavlović, Jadranka Đorđević Crnobrnja, Gordana Blagojević, Sanja Zlatanović, Miroslav Niškanović, Aleksandar Krel, Marta Stojić, Goran Bašić, Jelena Tošić

- Project 177028

Identity strategies: Contemporary culture and religiosity

A revival of religion at the end of the 20th cent. was for the most part, an unexpected event. This is supported by a review of the past circumstances- the intellectual heritage of the past, two centuries long modernization paradigm based on principles of rationalism and secularization, as well on the faith about unlimited progress and human potential. An epilogue of moderna, reflected in negotiation of boundaries and creation of global market and economic and cultural capital, has gained its counterbalance in a return of religious concepts to the historical scene. Multifaceted meanings, complexity and often, a dramatic tone of the return reflected the crisis of the sense of the cotemporary world.

In Serbia, this return to religion was especially intensive during the 1990's. This process could be reviewed at the two basic levels. Firstly, the return signified an increase in interests about mystical and occult knowledge, which has brought about an expansion of Eastern cults and meditation techniques, divination and related alternative medical practices. However, the mainstream of the religion revival refers to the return of the Serbian Orthodox Church into the public scene as well as an increased significance of the Orthodox teachings. At the level of individual, this designated an increase of participation in church rituals and higher frequency of practices of the traditional religious rituals within families. At the collective level, this process assumed a formation of new patterns of collective identity, suggested, supported and constructed mainly from "above"; a closer alliance of the Serbian Orthodox Church and the state aided to this. Furthermore, the church was often an organizer or one of the main participants in different public events- protests, rallies, manifestations etc.

Leader: Aleksandra Pavićević

Researchers: Dragana Radojičić, Jelena Čvorović, Ivica Todorović, Milina Ivanović-Barišić, Milesa Stefanović Banović, Marijana Mitrović, Đurđina Šijaković, Branko Ćupurdija, Milica Bakić Hayden, Jelena Čvorović, Mihailo Smiljanić, Nina Aksić.

- Project 47016

Interdisciplinary research of Serbian cultural and linguistic heritage. Creation of multimedial Internet portal "The Lexicon of Serbian Culture"

Leader: Dragana Radojičić

Subproject: Ethnological and anthropological readings of traditions.

The focus of the subproject is on decoding and analyzing traditions and identities in Serbia and the surrounding regions, including models and strategies that have helped to define, keep and transform the particular traditions, under the influence of history and societal pressures. The analyzed and interpreted data on cultural heritage and identity practices will be presented in the encyclopedic part of the digital Lexicon of Serbian Culture and in anticipated scientific papers, to be integrated with the internet library. The research will include: concepts of tradition in the past and present; everyday life, rituals and customs, mythology, religion and new religions, identity and cultural practices in the rural and urban cultures and subcultures at the local, national and regional level; gender identities, media and identity practices; dualism and parallelism of the customary and civic law, folk and alternative medicine, demography and reproductive strategies, collective memory patterns; models of the cultural and morphological variations between different populations, range of variables and variations of the cultural and biological characteristics, analysis of the social and micro-evolutionary processes that have caused them, especially migrations.

Subproject leader: Milina Ivanović-Barišić

Researchers: Dragana Radojičić, Aleksandra Pavićević, Lada Stevanović, Ivica Todorović, Ivica Todorović, Milesa Stefanović Banović, Branislav Pantović, Vesna Trifunović, Toma Tasovac, Đurđina Šijaković, Đorđina Trubarac Matić, Nina Aksić, Petrija Jovičić.

Projects financed by the Ministry of Culture and Information of the Republic of Serbia:

The digitalization of archived field data from Prizren

The archived field data collected in Prizren, owned by the Library of the Institute of Ethnography SASA, which dates back around 60 years has not yet been systematized.

The research which led to the data was conducted not only by ethnologists, but also by scholars in different, related disciplines (sociology, architecture, musicology and others). The research team for the monograph on Prizren consisted of prominent scholars such as Vojislav Radovanović, Dušan Nedeljković, Borivoje Drobnjaković, Mirko Barjaktarović, Hristifor Crnilović, Petar Vlahović, Srebrica Knežević, Milka Jovanović, Vidosava Nikolić Stojančević, Mark Krasnići, Dragoslav Dević, Milica Ilijin, Branislav Kojić, Branko Maksimović, Slobodan Nenadović, Zoran Petrović, Branko Milenković, Milisav Lutovac, Cvetko Kostić, Petar Šobajić, Radoslav Pavlović, Darinka Zečević, Željko Kumar, Vladimir Đurić, Leposava Žunić, Rada Marković and others.

The project refers to the digitalization of archived data collected in the field in Prizren, owned by the Institute of Ethnography SASA, and its publication as part of the digital platform Digitalization implies the transfer of ethnographic notes, photographs, negatives, tape recordings, video cassettes, manuscripts, geographic and topographic maps, sheet music and music scores into digital format according to archival principles. The variety of data owned by the Institute of Ethnography SASA allows for multifaceted research and multidisciplinary connections: on the culture of living (blueprints of houses), food culture, the typology of dances and songs (tape recordings and sheet music), crafts and customs of larger ethnic communities, linguistics (etymology, onomastics), history (oral history) in the former Prizren area. Certain segments of the data will be systematized into collections, for example personal collections (A. Deroko) and will interact with other types of data, which will enable it to be used both as scientific data and to be displayed to the public through exhibitions and publications. The electronic database of ethnographic notes and archival data will enable future generations of researchers to get to know the existing data and the principles behind it. This will further the approach to this branch of science through practical training for the entry of new ethnographic data into the database and the use of the data which is already stored in it.

Leader: Dragana Radojičić

Intangible cultural heritage in the multiethnic Banat communities

Banat is a region characterized by a distinctive cultural diversity (ethnic, linguistic, religious...). So far, research in ethnology and other related disciplines has pointed to, among other things, the wealth of intangible cultural heritage, such as customs and rituals, folklore etc. The aim of this project is to – through researching the wider cultural context such as the network of various identities, cultures, traditions – isolate, document, analyze and present those elements of intangible cultural heritage which are considered especially significant by the local communities as well as by the experts in the relevant fields. It may ensue that some of the cultural elements are not only significant and specific as valuable heritage of particular ethnic groups that comprise the multi-ethnic community of the Banat region, but also those that transcend their individual boundaries and which are, to the contrary, the result of inter-ethnic communication and cohabitation of these entities. Researches will pay special attention to the non-material elements of cultural heritage which are the specific local product of cultural borrowing and acculturation among different ethnic cultures. 
The aim of this project is also to help raise community members’ awareness of their cultural values, which could, in turn, help protect the heritage in the field. In addition, another specific goal of the project is to isolate the most valuable elements which would be suggested for protection at the national level and consequently for inclusion into the National Registry of Intangible Cultural Heritage of the Republic of Serbia.

Leader: Mladena Prelić

Researchers: Miroslava Lukić-Krstanović, Mirjana Pavlović, Gordana Blagojević, Sanja Zlatanović, Aleksandar Krel;

External researcher: Biljana Sikimić (Institute for Balkan Studies SASA)

International projects

Archive: previous projects

International projects

International cooperation