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Socialist symbolic geography and global belonging: Yugoslav travel writings in the Third World


European socialist travel writers in the previous century turned their course to Africa and Asia, reflecting the fact that the Second and Third Worlds formed a close political, economic and cultural alliance, which was built on a popular and widely accepted vision of mutual interconnectedness and global belonging. The socialist travelogue had an important role in promoting such symbolic geography and in negotiating proclaimed and practiced solidarities with various tensions, interests and power inequalities. Today, these travelogues and the partnership between the two worlds have been forgotten, profoundly influencing how we understand the European – and global – past and future. SOCGLOBE sets to examine the Yugoslav socialist travelogue (1945–1990), as a rich place to explore socialist symbolic geography and, consequently, promote values, narratives and memories of solidarity and global belonging in order to re-inspire public debates on the European future. In line with that, SOCGLOBE has two strategic goals: (1) to compose the first comprehensive corpus of Yugoslav travel writing, thus integrating the uncatalogued material in danger of historical disappearance, and (2) to build a novel conceptual framework to explore socialist symbolic geography beyond the currently dominant postcolonial model, created for analysing relations between Western Europe and its (colonial) Other(s). SOCGLOBE challenges the postcolonial approach by incorporating imagology and Bourdieu’s concept of position-taking into the research and proposes the notion of socialist symbolic geography as a site of multidimensional and multidirectional exchange and negotiation. SOCGLOBE advances literary-, cultural- and travel writing studies beyond their Western-oriented focus, and contributes to socialist studies, historical research on Second and Third World relations and broader research on (semi-)peripheries by proposing an alternative conceptual model for framing intercultural relations.


Net EU contribution
€ 161 889,60
Ivana lucica 3
10000 Zagreb

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Hrvatska Grad Zagreb Grad Zagreb
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Other funding
€ 0,00