CREES Brown Bag. “Nationalism, Myth, and Politics: Russians and Serbs in the Dissolution of the Soviet Union and Yugoslavia.”
Veljko Vujacic, William G. and Jeanette Williams Smith Associate Professor of Sociology, Oberlin College. Sponsors: CREES, CES-EUC.
This talk explores the different reactions of “core nations”—Russians and Serbs—to the dissolution of the Soviet Union and Yugoslavia, two multinational communist federations that shared important institutional features. The main puzzle revolves around the question of why most Serbs (unlike Russians) rejected the existing borders among republics as legitimate borders of internationally-recognized states, as well as the transformation of Yugoslavia into a confederation of independent states. While acknowledging the importance of contextual institutional and leadership factors in explaining this outcome, this talk seeks an answer in the very different and historically-rooted perceptions of the relationship between the nation and the state in Russia and Serbia.