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Skidmore College

Publication Date

Fall 2010

Program Name

Balkans: Post-Conflict Transformation in Croatia, Bosnia and Serbia

Abstract

The aim of this study was to uncover the existence, or possibility of, a Kosovar identity in today’s Kosovo. I intend to discuss the role personal experience plays in confirming or challenging one’s identity, and in this light show how the memories and personal experiences of Kosovo Serbs and Albanians endorse their ethnically-based interactions.

The methods of my research were mostly of an experiential nature, and consisted of staying in Kosovo for a two-week period. My research shows that there is no clear idea of what a Kosovar identity means for the people of Kosovo at this time. Their narratives and symbols demonstrate strong affiliation with their ethnic identities, which is seldom contested due to their geographical, educational, and linguistic divisions. For both groups, ethnic identity is much more central than a shared national identity.

The possibility of a shared national identity presents an opportunity for two ethnicities who have suffered in war to re-think and reconstruct a common disposition. Nevertheless, before a national identity can take hold in Kosovo, there needs to be a continuation of restoring trust on the community level.

Disciplines

Race and Ethnicity | Sociology of Culture

 

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