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"State pride": politics of LGBT rights and democratisation in "European Serbia"

Mikus, Marek (2011) "State pride": politics of LGBT rights and democratisation in "European Serbia". East European Politics and Societies, 25 (4). pp. 834-851. ISSN 0888-3254

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Identification Number: 10.1177/0888325411426886


This article analyses from an anthropological perspective the 2010 Belgrade Pride Parade, the first state-supported Parade in Serbia, as a part of the building of a democratic and European Serbian nation. In their discursive framing of the Parade and making claims on the state to take it under its auspices, the organising NGOs bound the event to the EU integration process of Serbia. This policy link helped them forge a political alliance with the state, but was also instrumentalised by the government to avoid an ideological conflict with the opponents of the Parade. Owing to the perception of the alliance as “elitist” and to the militarised and depoliticised nature of the state’s involvement, the event materially actualised and reified rather than transcended the enduring conflict of liberal and collectivist citizenship visions in Serbia. The article argues that the overall discourse of the government on Europeanisation is informed by the same top-down and instrumental logic. However, members of civil society develop political subjectivities which demand active citizen participation and critically engage with the discourse to restore its democratising potential. Similarly, the emerging “populist” politics of LGBT rights, illustrated by the pop singer Jelena Karleuša’s participation in the domestic debate, are better placed to face the legacies of socialist and ethnonationalist nation-building than the human rights and Europeanisation approaches.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2011 SAGE Publications
Divisions: Anthropology
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GN Anthropology
H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
H Social Sciences > HT Communities. Classes. Races
J Political Science > JA Political science (General)
Date Deposited: 06 Jan 2012 10:12
Last Modified: 20 Oct 2021 01:54

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