What does race have to do with the Yugoslav region?
Like south-east Europe and Europe's ex-state socialist societies in
general, the Yugoslav region has legacies of nation formation, forced
migration and genocide that invite seeing its past and present through the
lens of ethnopolitical and religious conflict. Scholars of eastern European
countries and the USSR, not just the Yugoslav region, face the obstacle of
reconciling the predominance of ethnicity and the invisibility of race.
Scholars in Black European Studies at locations including Germany, the
Nordic countries and the Netherlands have had to confront exceptionalism in
order for the mainstreams of their own area studies to hear them. Much
scholarship on race, postcoloniality and whiteness on European peripheries
is indebted to academics and activists in German Studies, including
Afro-German women who started theorising their 'double
oppressions' in white German society in collaboration with Audre
Evidence from popular music shows that the Yugoslav region just like other
European countries does possess a 'deep reservoir' of notions of
modernity, morality, hierarchy and entitlement through which popular culture
and everyday discourse mobilise meaning. Wekker's search for the
affective legacies of racialised colonial imagination in the 'cultural
archive' reinforces Anikó Imre's argument that scholars of
European media ought to apply the lens of east European postcoloniality to
everyday popular culture as well as highbrow literature and cinema. The most
unambiguous examples of colonial racialised imaginaries in post-Yugoslav
entertainment, even more so than Cro-dance's tribalism and primitivism,
were occasional blackface performances on music television. Popular music
stands alongside transnational sport and film as a major vector for an
embodied transnational cultural politics of race, where what producers and
audiences perceive through transnational media is adapted or vernacularised
through their own perceptions of race and identity.
Race, as well as ethnicity, is an essential category for understanding the
micropolitics of postsocialism, and for situating the Yugoslav wars more
widely in late-twentieth-century European history. Post-9/11 Islamophobia
compounded late-twentieth-century Western cultural racisms that already
stigmatised Islam as incompatible with liberal democracy, along lines
inflected by specific national histories and experiences but with common
assumptions that Islam was incompatible with a secular Europe or West. The
forms of anti-Muslim racism combined the xenophobic opposition to
extra-European migration of late-twentieth/early-twenty-first-century
European cultural racism with the War on Terror's racialised
Islamophobia. The idea of 'postnational' defence in
twenty-first-century European security viewed national interests and defence
as 'multinational', 'achieved in solidarity with others well
beyond the borders'. The politics of racism and peacekeeping in the
Yugoslav wars exemplified how post-Yugoslav racisms mediated the
geopolitical reversal that many ex-Yugoslavs felt they had undergone.
This book explains theoretical work in postcolonial and postsocialist studies to
offer a novel and distinctive insight into how Yugoslavia is configured by, and
through, race. It presents the history of how ideas of racialised difference
have been translated globally in Yugoslavia. The book provides a discussion on
the critical race scholarship, global historical sociologies of 'race in
translation' and south-east European cultural critique to show that the
Yugoslav region is deeply embedded in global formations of race. It considers
the geopolitical imagination of popular culture; the history of ethnicity; and
transnational formations of race before and during state socialism, including
the Non-Aligned Movement. The book also considers the post-Yugoslav discourses
of security, migration, terrorism and international intervention, including the
War on Terror and the refugee crisis. It elaborates how often-neglected aspects
of the history of nationhood and migration reveal connections that tie the
region into the global history of race. The book also explains the linkage
between ethnic exclusivism and territory in the ethnopolitical logic of the
Bosnian conflict and in the internationally mediated peace agreements that
enshrined it: 'apartheid cartography'. Race and whiteness remained
perceptible in post-war Bosnian identity discourses as new, open-ended forms of
post-conflict international intervention developed.
In domains from the history of popular entertainment to that of ethnicity and
migration, ideas of race, as well as ethnicity and religion, have
demonstrably formed part of how people from the Yugoslav region have
understood their place in Europe and the world. Even within the expanding
history of state socialism and race, the impact of the 1990s wars on memory
and identity set the Yugoslav region apart; yet the geopolitics of
Non-Alignment had already distinguished Yugoslavia during the Cold War.
Miglena Todorova on twentieth-century Bulgaria anticipated much of the
transnational turn in Cold War history by centring race as part of identity
under state socialism. Habsburg cultural history has addressed race and
anti-blackness in consumer and leisure culture, far less across the wider
empire outside metropolitan, majority- German-speaking Vienna.
In 1796 a German politico-philosophical manifesto proclaims the 'highest act of reason' as an 'aesthetic act'. The ways in which this transformation relates to the development of some of the major directions in modern philosophy is the focus of this book. The book focuses on the main accounts of the human subject and on the conceptions of art and language which emerge within the Kantian and post-Kantian history of aesthetics. Immanuel Kant's main work on aesthetics, the 'third Critique', the Critique of Judgement, forms part of his response to unresolved questions which emerge from his Critique of Pure Reason and Critique of Practical Reason. The early Romantics, who, after all, themselves established the term, can be characterized in a way which distinguishes them from later German Romanticism. The 'Oldest System Programme of German Idealism', is a manifesto for a new philosophy and exemplifies the spirit of early Idealism, not least with regard to mythology. The crucial question posed by the Friedrich Wilhelm Joseph Schelling of the System of Transcendental Idealism (STI) is how art relates to philosophy, a question which has recently reappeared in post-structuralism and in aspects of pragmatism. Despite his undoubted insights, Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel's insufficiency in relation to music is part of his more general problem with adequately theorising self-consciousness, and thus with his aesthetic theory. Friedrich Schleiermacher argues in the hermeneutics that interpretation of the meaning of Kunst is itself also an 'art'. The book concludes with a discussion on music, language, and Romantic thought.
Often presented as a proto-totalitarian, Rousseau has traditionally been seen as an opponent of constitutionalism, checks and balances, and the separation of powers. Following a brief overview of the history of constitutionalism (from Moses to the French Revolution), this chapter compares Rousseau's political writings with the writings of constitutionalists like James Madison and Baron de Montesquieu. It shows that Rousseau shared the view that checks and balances are necessary for preventing the corruption of power and that he advocated a system of the separation of powers (and spoke highly of the British constitution. Yet, contrary to the other constitutionalists, Rousseau was a democrat. Whereas Montesquieu and Madison wanted the elites to check the elites (through the introduction of second chambers and constitutional courts), Rousseau emphasised that the executive ought to be checked by the people. He thus anticipated the political system that was instated by the American populists (including Theodore Roosevelt and Woodrow Wilson). However, unlike other constitutionalists, Rousseau did not believe that institutions themselves would be sufficient for creating a good polity. He ceaselessly emphasised that political education was necessary for creating a good society.
Previously unrecognised by scholars of nationalism, Rousseau was, in fact, the founder of the modern doctrine of nationalism. This chapter shows how Rousseau succeeded in developing a case for social cohesion and the necessity of having a common culture in a society. In developing a case for nationalism as a ‘civic profession of faith’ he continued—and redeveloped—a doctrine begun by Machiavelli, which was later to be further elaborated by Alexis de Tocqueville and present-day theorists and practitioners of social capital, like the political scientist Robert Putnam and the English politician David Blunkett. It is argued that Rousseau accomplished the feat of developing a new doctrine of civic religion (i.e., nationalism) and that he succeeded in combining a defence for this doctrine with a new place for Christianity (which was consistent with the original apolitical teachings of Christ). The chapter also presents an account of Rousseau's thinking on international politics, including something as timely as an account of his opposition against the establishment of a European superstate.
The reductionist assumptions that lead to the idea of folk psychology themselves involve serious methodological problems which are shown up by arguments from the aesthetic tradition. The ideas about the role and nature of self-consciousness from Immanuel Kant to the Romantics suggest that attempts to explicate subjectivity in the terms used to explain objective nature will themselves fall prey to the problems of reflection. Theodor W. Adorno is an apt figure to invoke in the context because, in the wake of Friedrich Nietzsche, he thinks, as does Martin Heidegger, that the ills of modernity are rooted in the attempt by the subject to dominate the world of objects. Richard Rorty characterises the development of modernity in terms of how the 'public', problem solving resources of natural science and 'projects of social cooperation' become separate from 'private' projects of self-development, in which he includes 'romantic art' and, possibly, religion.
This chapter outlines the major philosophical problem for Rousseau: the burden of modernity. It gives an account of Rousseau's place in the emerging world of modernity, and his opposition to secularism and scientism. It shows how his general philosophical—and theological—opposition to modernity underpinned his moral philosophy. Unlike liberal or utilitarian thinkers, Rousseau sought to base his moral judgements on emotions and sensibility, not on rational calculations. It is shown how this made him overcome the poverty of ethical theory that has characterised modernity—and how Rousseau invented post-modernism (with a pre-modern face). The chapter also contains a section on Rousseau's economic philosophy, in which it is shown that he—like Adam Smith—succeeded in transcending the economic theories of mercantilists and physiocrats. An analysis of the relationship between Rousseau and Burke is also presented. Often seen as adversaries, the chapter shows that Rousseau and Burke, in fact, were in agreement on the majority of issues, including opposition to revolutionary change, reverence for religion, and a preference for gradual reform.