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Moreover, the talk about national character started to focus increasingly on the flip-side of the heroic Dinaric type. The Jeremiads of and were used and discarded, marginalized and ridiculed, co-opted and silenced, and then finally robbed of agendas and rhetorics of the old generation of Serbian intelligentsia by a chameleon regime. The tunes were practically identical. His performance, however, added the theme of Oriental, or more specifically, Turkish taintedness 3.

Far more than just an argument over the musical taste, this constituted a claim to power. When it comes to expressing such deep self-recrimination, nothing in Serbian repertory of themes could be as powerful as the entangled complex of the Turkish Taint. Finally, in contrast to the previous few years of nationalist euphoria, the talk about national character started to focus increasingly on the flip-side of the heroic Dinaric type — the fawning servility of the rayah mentality. And that is a heavy impression For him it bespoke of a tragic lack of moral fiber, of integrity and backbone.

And he immediately associated this most recent event with the situation in , after the Communist takeover. How treason, cowardice, sycophancy, falsehood, and deceit started to appear, mass joining of the Communist party by people who never thought they would turn into Communists, and who calculated it to be a good move bringing some social privileges and a better life Such lack of backbone does not agree with the entrenched self-image of Serbs as heroic, independent, and proud people and Gostuski now starts to doubt even the most hallowed instances of Serbian heroism.

I wondered how could a people who makes so much of its heroism, its courage and honor, who proved through history I started to doubt, I am telling you sincerely, I started to doubt even the Kosovo battle, even the Salonika front, and all these heroic and honorable deeds of the Serbian people and I asked myself how could something like this happen So that, it is not too far fetched to conclude that with this damage we have become, in the majority, a genetic trash, because those who remained were mostly deserters and dodgers, and people of bad character, and that, of course, through generations has been reproduced.

The first is to blame fifty years of Communism for having broken the moral backbone of Serbs. This is a complaint often made, and it is probably familiar in most post-communist societies. Similarly, the highlanders could be seen as brave, proud, of superior mettle, or obversely, as violent, primitive, or arrogant. First because they were the ones who refused to be cast in chains preferring instead to be in a centuries long mountain hideaway, guilty because they settled the more fertile and richer regions.

Guilty of thinking that Serbia is a free country for the Serbs born outside of it as well. Their other, and much graver sin is that They have established their own networks These circles are very fond of pointing out how the new Communist elite which flooded Serbia after the WW II, disinherited the old bourgeois elite and purged them physically, was overwhelmingly composed of the highlander Dinarics from outside of Serbia proper.

If only we were that lucky! Those others [highlander newcomers] do not have the breadth [of view] and do not know how to look. Some hard people and harsh. They proclaimed force and power for justice, deception and corruption for morality, malice and envy for customs, Asiatic howling for music, and pistols and revolvers for national costume This is the essential difference between the comrades and the gentlemen gospoda. I am not losing hope that you will understand the importance of good manners and home upbringing In that sense, the Dinaric character and Rayah mentality could be seen not as characterizing different populations, but as being two sides of the same coin, or two phases of the same character structure, in a way, for instance, that mania and depression could be just different phases of the maniacal-depressive disorder.

The analogy is not spurious, for psychiatric diagnoses of the national character became a prominent type of stories Serbs told themselves about themselves in the last few years.

Inclined to strong imagination, his emotional life at odds with thinking, at times omnipotent It is impossible not to notice a similarity between the behavior of the Serbian Dinaric and the behavior of an average adolescent. To liken national character to that of an adolescent is like comparing those lacking culture or civilization with children, lunatics, women, and with nature. Indeed, one might say, he is half-baked, neither here nor there, he needs finishing, polishing, refinement, maturing, cultivation.

He was talking about culture in the sense of self-perfection of the individual, the harmonious and comprehensive development of the person, that is to say in the sense of bildung. The cultural model is, however, developed by the older, or more fortunate nations, rather than the individuals, and should be emulated by the nations that lack it.

Greenfeld would say 30 , by definition superior to model imitators. In practice, the two are mostly amalgamated and mixed in various proportions and permutations, but sometimes they come to be distinguished and even opposed to each other The story of how Kultur as a weapon of inter-class distinction in Germany was transformed into the inter-national distinction between French civilization and German Kultur is one of the founding stories of modernity 32 , and the two axes of comparison have been conflated ever since.

Once nationalised, culture became democratized, then massified, and mechanically reproduced thus causing the cultural angst of a new breed of cultural critics from Simmel, through Benjamin to Sapir and Adorno. It became heavily contentious and emotion-laden. What do you mean I mean by culture? And then with a pained expression of revulsion mixed with indulgence towards the character flaws of his own people he abruptly turned and left.

It is noticeable that in the capital city there is no more middle stratum. It plunged into the chasm of poverty. The elite is now determined by wealth and property, not by spiritual superiority. And without the elite of spirit and of knowledge there is no entrance into the 21 st century. From the half-world of the [criminal] underground, from the provincial suburbs, from the twilight of metropolis, from the hell of war — there emerged the riders of the cultural apocalypse.

More or less everything that was objectionable in spiritual and moral terms appeared at the very center of the degraded reality. Like some formless and terrifying shadows, the new primitives accompany the times of crisis, anxiety, fear and emptiness.

There, one can begin the story of their spiritual poverty, of the nature of their raw strength which is far from either culture or cultivation, removed both from emancipation and education. The nouveau riche take all that life offers, all they can grab These fishers in troubled water mutnolovci — foreigners to intellectuality, sensibility and morality, and very close to the aesthetic of kitsch — achieved the strategy of winning important positions in the society Immoderation, bad taste, grandomania and arrogance are marks of their life style.

A style without style. The refinement of the newly composed rich is laughable and caricatural. Full pockets, empty souls. The impression one gets from reading Bourdieu is of an almost crystalline structure of minute distinctions within which is waged a lively but highly ordered classification struggle. No sense there that every so often come catastrophe totally erases these distinctions and the very classes engaged in the struggle.

Urban development and the bourgeoisie have been experiencing tragic discontinuities in our regions 38 , the bourgeoisie had been few, short lived, and powerless, and to this day has not been able to impose itself as an agent of any kind of significant social change. In our society, as a distant province and a semi-colony of the Ottoman Oriental despoty, the bourgeoisie and enterpreneurship, as the carriers of the liberal orientation, could not have developed and entrenched themselves properly.

Instead of the bourgeoisie gradjanstvo the ruling stratum was the trading bourgeoisie of peasant origin whose cultural-ethical and political value orientations were not a milieu particularly advantageous for the economic and political modernization. In the whirlwinds of the Balkan, the First and the Second World wars, as well as in the first years after the Second World War, the already scarce bourgeoisie was significantly reduced in number.

Oriented towards the autocratic state and very much dependent on it, the thin stratum of the bourgeoisie mostly did not incline towards liberal ideas. The dissident, that is to say, the oppositionary groups which were more or less publicly active after , were most often of Marxist orientation, and that meant they were either against or ambivalent towards the bourgeoisie. What makes a Jeremiad like his, and the chorus of Jeremiads heard at the Conference so rich and revealing are the particular local twists on the generic themes.

He 42 is the peasant-urbanite, the half-breed, the eternal semi-. The Peasant Urbanite thus comes to stand for the whole of the present-day Serbian society rather than just for its uncultured stratum.

Nor were the emblems of national culture neglected. There is a video clip that shows almost all the icons of national culture in their chronological order, starting with archeological finds of Neolithic, Celtic and Roman times, through the medieval Serbian monasteries, images associated with the 19 th century romantic nationalism, and ending with fashionable Paris-based painters.

Completely empty of content as it was, that slogan was for this very reason all the more powerful. The phrase also carried with it an echo of a whole genre of expressions widespread in Communist regimes that named the unutterable center of power with precisely such shifters The slogan was a masterpiece of cynicism.

It took the whole inchoate experience of that period, with all its misery, trauma and impoverishment and brazenly declared that even all that was As It Should Be.

If the Ministry said what kind of a good thing culture was, it would have been open to argument. Instead, the slogan pre-emptied all argument, debate and negation, for culture is simply whatever is associated at any given moment with the throne — proximity to the throne is the only criterion of value.

Even though they talked about the same phenomena, and used the same phrases, these ancestors belonged to a generation of Serbian intelligentsia that essentially was in charge. A good recent example is offered by D. By rotating its cast of ideological surrogates through the musical chairs of power, the regime protects itself from its own positions and actions.

In this context, it probably means communist because communism often gets blamed for suppressing Serbian national consciousness, and more specifically, the consciousness of the unity of all the Serbs in the former Yugoslavia. Both terms exists in Serbian and denote roughly the same thing but their connotations are very different. Since he retired from clinical practice, he teaches pastoral psychology at the Belgrade Theological Faculty. The social strata were formed on the basis of covert privileges and corruption, independently from the social position and status, independently from education and the lifestyle.

What then is the social structure like today — when one becomes a millionaire or a pauper in a month! After being ousted, she became a highly respected historian of socialist movements in modern Serbia. This is where another important notion of what being cultured means could be found. According to that notion, culture is independent of education, even opposed to it.

After all, the culturedness of the volk is the supposedly the opposite of the culture of the educated and as interpreted by some of those educated actually superior to it. When Sapir says that an American Indian has better chances at being genuinely cultured than a telephone girl, he is embracing a similar notion of what being cultured means. The male is the uncultivated, raw and brutal primitive, who is then cultivated by the ethereal, fragile and cultivated girl from the urban elite gradjanski sloj The plot usually takes place at one or another of those upheavals and catastrophes when the new wave of highlanders, barbarians, etc.

This rather unintelligibly written book is one of the most powerful statements, or rather indictments of the national character and its half-bakedness.

The translation was done by Dale Pesmen who tried to make the untranslatable wordplay understandable in English.

Unlike English, the Serbian translation retains the same wordplay that exists in the original Russian. Where You Belong for whom and for what? This Institution acquired the reputation of seeing everything, hearing everything, knowing everything, and, if something was out of line, the Institution would be there in a flash. Both terms exists in Serbian and de This is wher Haut de page.


Bojan Jovanović - Karakterologija Srba

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Adamant And Treacherous: Serbian Historians On Religious Conversions

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