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Tomislav Gotovac, Streaking, 1971. Collection Sarah Gotovac / Courtesy Tomislav Gotovac Institute, Zagreb

Tomislav Gotovac, Streaking, 1971. Collection Sarah Gotovac / Courtesy Tomislav Gotovac Institute, Zagreb

Events - Talks

The Study Sessions: Humour in former Yugoslavia

The soft underbelly of the official state rhetoric

28 Jan 2016

Led by Dr Maja Mikula, this study session will look at the ways former Yugoslavs ‘laughed up’ at authorities, ‘laughed down’ - often benevolently - at particular ethnic and minority groups within the country’s diverse cultural tapestry; and ‘laughed together’ with others, sometimes at their own perceived idiosyncrasies, to re-affirm allegiance to their imagined communities. Parallels will be drawn with the popular humour in other socialist countries during the Cold War period.
 
Ideology thrives on our most intimate experiences and uses laughter as a particularly effective instrument to keep us in check.  But laughter is capricious and unpredictable, and ultimately eludes social control. In former Yugoslavia, a vibrant popular culture of laughter co-existed with the official state rhetoric of self-management, brotherhood and unity.
 
 
Dr Maja Mikula is Senior Lecturer in Global Studies at Nottingham Trent University. Her research and publications focus on national identity, borders, transnationalism, digital technologies, new media, popular culture and everyday life, with a focus on Europe's eastern peripheries
 
 
6.30pm-8.30pm
 
Free, The Studio

 

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