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Slovenský Národopis / Slovak Ethnology
Number of Followers: 0  

  This is an Open Access Journal Open Access journal
ISSN (Print) 1335-1303 - ISSN (Online) 1339-9357
Published by Slovak Academic Press Homepage  [2 journals]
  • Analysis of Interventions to Reduce Antigypsyism in Slovakia: A Social
           Psychology Perspective

    • Abstract: Despite numerous efforts of Roma inclusion from various State and non-governmental organisations, segregation and socioeconomic marginalisation of the Roma is still widespread in Slovakia. In this paper, we show what social-psychological factors intervene into the process of intergroup relations change and how they can influence the effectiveness of interventions to reduce antigypsyism. We contend that establishing intergroup harmony between majority and minority may, by creating false assumptions about the absence of structural inequalities, weaken the potential for social change and minority collective action. Based on the theoretical analysis as well as the content analysis of anti-discrimination interventions carried out in the year 2018 and the thematic analysis of interviews with selected stakeholders (NGO representatives, intervention participants, sponsors) we identified four challenges that need to be tackled if the interventions are to succeed in reducing antigypsyism. These are: 1) essentializing vs. empowerment of minorities; 2) tension between the colourblind and multiculturalism approaches; 3) problem of intergroup boundaries and their consequences for generalization of positive intergroup attitudes to the whole outgroup; and 4) societal norms defining the nature of intergroup relations. We discuss how these challenges ought to be addressed in succesful anti-discrimination interventions.
      PubDate: Fri, 23 Apr 2021 00:00:00 GMT
  • The Hero in the Lyrical Epic Poem in the Context of Contemporary

    • Abstract: The analytical-interpretative study examines the depiction of literary characters in the lyrical-epic work Detvan written by Andrej Sládkovič. It interprets the ingenious system of relations between the Slovak nation represented by the main character Martin and King Matthias Corvinus. The study notes the shifts in meaning and symbolization of relationships in this work and reveals the influence of national ideology in the creation of characters and their relations. It proves that the relationship between the king and the main character is a poetic expression of the national program, and that the story line is determined by the Slovak autostereotype of a peaceful nation. The article was written on the occasion of the 200th anniversary of Andrej Sládkovič’s birth.
      PubDate: Fri, 23 Apr 2021 00:00:00 GMT
  • From a Shepherd’s Hut to the Presidential Palace. Contribution to the 15
           Anniversary of the proclamation of the Fujara as UNESCO Masterpiece of the
           Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity

    • Abstract: The fujara became the first element of Slovakia’s traditional music culture proclaimed as Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity in 2005 and automatically incorporated in the UNESCO Representative List of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity in 2008. I was a member of the team that prepared the application documents and witnessed debates among fujara players on what this event would mean for the fujara and its music. The expectations of the performers, instrument makers, and other fans of the fujara were ambiguous. After 15 years since the proclamation, there is an opportunity to show what has happened with the fujara and to what extent their visions have been fulfilled. In this context, the text reflects on important contemporary events related to the life of the fujara: changes in the making technology, unification of its acoustic and intonation features, new ways of its use, presentation of this instrument in the media, as well as processes of a socio-cultural nature focused on the community of fujara players, the education of young performers, and the perception of the fujara in today’s society.
      PubDate: Fri, 23 Apr 2021 00:00:00 GMT
  • Testing of Priorities in the Research of Cultural Heritage in
           Slovakia’s Depopulated Regions

    • Abstract: Along with the dynamics of findings of several scientific disciplines of the recent decades, the mechanisms and processes of culture transmission seem to be much more apparent. The knowledge about cultural heritage and the inheritance of culture produced in this way have led to the creation of several platforms of critical cultural heritage. Anthropological and ethnological findings significantly enrich these multi-disciplinary environments where the criterion of a living cultural heritage is becoming generally accepted. In this light, the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) created a working group in 2019 with the aim to prepare an innovated Strategic Research Agenda (SRIA) for the submission of European projects in the field of cultural heritage (JPI CH). The working group invited Slovak and Czech researchers to reflect on the knowledge from the Central European research area in order to define the research topics for the priority Cultural Heritage and People. The research on the testing of the priority and clarification of the impacts of the depopulation of cultural regions on cultural heritage was conducted at selected locations of the Hont, Novohrad and Malohont regions. The key indicators for justifying the inclusion of the research topic The impact of the depopulation of EU regions with cultural heritage in SRIA include ethnographic information, historical demographic data and the modelling of the transmission of cultural heritage content to the next generations.
      PubDate: Fri, 23 Apr 2021 00:00:00 GMT
  • Contemporary Paradigms in the Historical Context of the Institute of
           Ethnology and Social Anthropology SAS (1946 – 1989): From the to the

    • Abstract: The aim of this study is to offer a paradigmatic analysis of the development of the discipline – called predominantly “ethnography” and “ethnology” in the 20th century Slovakia – in the background of the history of its development within one of the key institutions in Slovakia where research is conducted – the Institute of Ethnology and Social Anthropology of the Slovak Academy of Sciences (IESA SAS).It is extremely interesting in our case how, in a relatively short period of its existence, the institution under study reacted flexibly to changes in the political regimes and discursive paradigms which resulted in system changes. The changes in external settings forced the institution to interact and intervene, which was reflected in different intensities of reorganisation of the internal ecosystem in different periods. On the other hand, it is also possible to observe major resilience which enabled the institution to preserve internal consistency of its processes. In the case of the IESA SAS, we can rather speak of “micro-historical temporalities” (measured approximately over a period of individual decades) in the background of more general longue dureé processes (i.e. long-lasting and global historical changes) in which work teams, specific personalities at leadership positions as well as the external ecosystem were significantly engaged. Within the history of the institution, the study also observes the life and modus operandi of two important generations, denoting them, in terms of the metaphorical discourse, as the generation of founders (1950s and 1960s) and the generation of builders (1970s and 1980s).
      PubDate: Fri, 23 Apr 2021 00:00:00 GMT
  • Book-Review

    • PubDate: Fri, 23 Apr 2021 00:00:00 GMT
  • Intangible Cultural Heritage as a Subject of Ethnological Research

    • PubDate: Fri, 23 Apr 2021 00:00:00 GMT
  • The Origins of Women’s Skirt and Shirt Clothing on the Moravian-Slovak
           Border and Its Central European Context

    • Abstract: Over the past one hundred years, folk clothing has been considered one of the most significant elements of cultural heritage and has been perceived in this way not only by experts but, for many decades, by its wearers as well. In the present study, the author seeks to find an answer, based on an analysis of older expert texts, as to what formed the theoretical basis for this process, who were its representatives, at what conclusions they arrived, and how the methods of their work were reflected in the formulation of their conclusions. From the historical perspective, the study summarises the opinions on folk clothing, projected through the idea of Slavic unity, as can be observed in the case of Jan Koula and, through the reception of these opinions, also in the case of Lubor Niederle, Drahomíra Stránská and Viera Nosáľová. This work also offers newer reflections from the studies by Alena Jeřábková on the shaping of folk clothing within the Carpathian culture. Through the example of women’s linen skirts, the material part of the study seeks to point out the pitfalls of these approaches and highlight the need to study the construction of folk clothing from a longer historical perspective. Only in this way is the effect of clothing styles in the form of domestication of the individual pieces of stylish clothing evident, combined with older clothing layers. Even though most parts of folk clothing are not proto-Slavic and do not necessarily relate to the culture of the Carpathian curve, as a whole, they prove well the way the countryside managed to accept the transformations of contemporary fashion over the last four centuries and to incorporate them into a unique clothing complex. 
      PubDate: Fri, 23 Apr 2021 00:00:00 GMT
  • Elements of Traditional Crafts as an Inspiration for Modern Design and an
           Incentive for Regional Development from the Perspective of Experts,
           Manufacturers and Users

    • Abstract: The text seeks answers to the questions of what folk inspirations in design mean and whether local identity embedded in traditions can work as a brand able to interpret traditional products and samples and, subsequently, disseminate them by means of strategies used in design. It is a conscious, innovative process that draws creatively on local sources. Today, traditional forms and patterns are naturally present in real craft products as well as kitsch objects created as an expression of the commercialisation of tourism. Attention is also paid to the terms “craft product” and “regional product”, their significance and understanding by local manufacturers, users, self-governing bodies, and activities at the given location. The analysis of this topic is based on field research and the results of an internet questionnaire.
      PubDate: Fri, 23 Apr 2021 00:00:00 GMT
  • (Im)mobility Subcontracted: Nesting Hierarchies, Uneven Distributions and
           the ‘Roma Inclusion’ Projects in Europe

    • Abstract: This paper explores social mobilities and trajectories in relation to particular mechanisms of subcontracting and of unequal distribution of capitals in the emerging field of EU funded projects for poor and socially excluded populations in Europe. It discusses some of the struggles for possible mobilities and its limits amidst continuing production and reproduction of privileges, disadvantages and structural orders in these project-cum-policy worlds constraints. By examining a particular case of a large-scale and multi-sited project and other similar project schemes, described by some of its proponents as one of the most ‘participatory’ projects for Roma in Europe, the article illustrates particular mechanisms of power and knowledge reproduction that facilitates some kinds of mobilities while also reproducing certain constraints and limits on these possibilities (for some subjects and some social trajectories). It develops an ethnographic critique of situated and nesting hierarchies of management and brokerage leading to reproduction of particular setups, privileges, unequal economic distribution and (mis)recognitions of capitals, which allows for particular emergence of particular kinds of contested ‘expertise’ in the uneven field of so-called ‘Roma inclusion’.
      PubDate: Tue, 05 Jan 2021 00:00:00 GMT
  • ‘We’ll Help Ourselves, but What’s in It for Us'’ Conflict,
           Development and Social Mobility among Roma in Romania

    • Abstract: Roma-related development and policy discourse often represents the Roma development ‘subjects’ as disempowered victims. Against the pervasiveness of such narratives, a close look at the local level conflicts arising during the implementation of a World Bank development project in destitute Roma communities from Romania lays bare the strategies of unassisted social mobility in which a group of Roma engage. Not large or well-defined enough to be constituted into a real ‘class’ in sociological terms, this strategic group is made up of Roma civil servants (mediators, local experts, Romani language teachers) who negotiate their engagement in development projects on their own terms and use the material and immaterial resources that projects offer to enact their own upward social mobility. Often, though, this comes at the cost of a growing socio-economic gap between themselves and the most destitute parts of Roma communities, which complicates their involvement in development projects. The article underlines the necessity of taking into account both the strategies of unassisted social mobility of Roma development brokers, and the internal power imbalances that the development apparatus inevitably ends up producing in Roma communities.
      PubDate: Tue, 05 Jan 2021 00:00:00 GMT
  • Cinematic Representation of the Roma’s Social Position and Mobility: A
           Comparative Analysis of Two Czech and Slovak Feature Films

    • Abstract: The focus of this article is on two Czech and Slovak films, My Friend Fabián (Můj přítel Fabián, 1955) and Gypsy (Cigán, 2011). While the former emerged in the 1950s, in the period of socialist industrialisation, the latter was released in the period of post-socialist consolidation of capitalism. Theoretically this article relies on a mix of approaches from film studies, social anthropology, post-colonial studies and archival research. The central research question is how cinematic representation of Roma were approached in the past and how they have changed over time. The film My Friend Fabián is replete with colonial tropes of uninhibited dancing, singing and exotica stereotypes and depicts imaginary Roma as incompetent individuals who are subject to the paternalistic care of the White socialist functionaries. At the same time this film presents a viable model for Roma integration and social advancement via education and full-fledged integration into the working class. In contrast, the film Gypsy is much more respectful towards Roma, contemporary performers and characters are real Roma and their film destinies are realistic. But the world that surrounds film characters is the world of total racial exclusion, which offers no hope and no prospects whatsoever for Roma and their social advance.
      PubDate: Tue, 05 Jan 2021 00:00:00 GMT
  • Social Mobility and Political Engagement of the Roma Across Europe.
           Introduction to the Special Issue

    • PubDate: Tue, 05 Jan 2021 00:00:00 GMT
  • Envy, Corruption and ‘Hard Racism’: Studying Antigypsyism as
           an Ideological Fantasy

    • Abstract: Antigypsyism has been frequently said to be a racist ideology. However, although some studies have engaged with the ‘racist’ component of the thesis, almost no work has been done in terms of specifying what ideology is and how a certain conception of it can enhance the understanding of antigypsyism both as a concept and empirical phenomenon. This paper explores the potential of the Lacanian theory of ideology as exemplified by Slavoj Žižek for developing antigypsyism research. Overcoming the problem of false consciousness, Žižek’s conception offers an analytical framework that allows re-examining and elaborating on certain issues from the perspective which weaves social and psychic realities without falling into the traps of psychological reductionism. To illustrate this, this paper presents a Žižekian analysis of three issues that correspond to different aspects of the antigypsyist phenomenon identified via ethnographic research among the non-Roma inhabitants of a declining neighbourhood with a significant Roma presence in Czechia. The issues are called envy, corruption and ‘hard racism’.
      PubDate: Tue, 05 Jan 2021 00:00:00 GMT
  • Book Reviews Book Essays

    • PubDate: Tue, 05 Jan 2021 00:00:00 GMT
  • The Importance of Employment in Roma Social Integration: Looking Back at
           the Early Years of the Decade of Roma Inclusion

    • Abstract: This article critically compares Roma experience of the key role of employment in the period of Communism with that during the following two decades. It draws on my experience as an ethnological researcher from 1969 onwards and also later as an investigator evaluating Roma inclusion programmes for the European Commission in countries seeking membership of the European Union. It comes to the depressing conclusion that the majority of Roma remain largely excluded from mainstream society in spite of their own considerable efforts to improve their economic and social standing, as well as various initiatives of the European Union and NGOs. This situation poses a threat not only to Roma themselves but to the stability of the countries in which they live.
      PubDate: Tue, 05 Jan 2021 00:00:00 GMT
  • Forced settlement of Vlach Roma in Žatec and Louny in the late 1950s

    • Abstract: The author of the study presents a micro-historical study of a family of Vlach Roma (Lovára) of western Slovakian origin, who were one of the few Romani groups still on the move in the mid-1950s and who in the late 1950s were forced to settle in the towns of Louny and Žatec in north-western Bohemia. Against this background the author focuses on some aspects of the Czechoslovak assimilation policy of the 1950s regarding ‘itinerant Gypsies’, designed to limit their mobility, which is represented mainly by the implementation of the Law on the Permanent Settlement of Itinerant Persons (No. 74/1958 Coll.). Using a combination of oral history methods involving Vlach Romani narrators and of archival research, the author clarifies some aspects of the local process of the implementation of the above-mentioned law and of selected impacts of the registration of travelling and semi-travelling people in February 1959. The forced sedentarization which occurred in the two localities under study is presented in the context of the regime of state socialism and the policies of central as well as local authorities towards so-called ‘travelling Gypsies’ in the late 1950s.
      PubDate: Tue, 05 Jan 2021 00:00:00 GMT
  • How Roma Mayors Penetrate the Municipal Power Structures: Resisting the
           Non-Roma Dominance in Slovak Local Governments

    • Abstract: This paper discusses the outcomes of power asymmetries in Slovak municipalities with Roma population and presents examples how local Roma leaders resist the non-Roma dominance by active participation in local elections. Presenting data from field research and long-term repeated observations, the paper shows successful strategies of elected Roma mayors who disrupt the usual perception of the Roma as objects of decision-making process and passive recipients of various policies. In these paternalistic beliefs Roma have never been seen as actors who can control resources, who could hold the political power and who could decide how to use the resources. Although the Roma have penetrated the power structures of many municipalities, they are not able to wipe out invisible ethnic boundaries, or, at least, to soften and disrupt them. However, as the text illustrates, it seems that the political power asymmetries in a significant number of municipalities are being balanced, nevertheless, the symbolic dominance and symbolic power of non-Roma still persists.
      PubDate: Tue, 05 Jan 2021 00:00:00 GMT
  • Jewish Swimming and Sports Club Bar Kochba Bratislava – the Most
           Successful Sports Club of Slovakia in the Interwar Period

    • Abstract: In this article, the author deals with the foundation, development, results and reasons of disappearance of the most successful sports club in the interwar era; the Jewish swimming and sports club Bar Kochba Bratislava. After the birth of Czechoslovakia, sports in Slovakia could develop on a national basis. Large national minorities had the same possibilities. To eliminate the risk of misusing sports for political purposes, sport representatives decided to organise it on the ethnic principle instead of the regional one. Thanks to this a wide variety of national sports organisations were established, including some Jewish ones. Even though Jews constituted only 2.01% of the population in the interwar period in today’s territory of Slovakia (Bergerová, 1992: 108), they succeeded not only in sports but in other areas of social life as well.
      PubDate: Thu, 28 Mar 2019 00:00:00 GMT
  • Ad fontes (The Codices of Revúca)

    • Abstract: The article presents the Codices of Revúca as one of the most important sources of research on Slovak fairy tales through the interpretation of the Berona fairy tale. This topic as a whole but also in the context of the fairy tale theory is still unexplored, just like most similar manuscripts of Slovak romanticists who were at the birth of the folklore studies in their pre-scientific period. It is purposly conceived as a material study with the aim of demonstrating the need to return to archive sources and the research potential offered by such materials. It is, however, not the specific objective of this article to present an analysis of the texts quoted in the annex. The article consists of two parts. The first one evaluates the existing material base of the research on the Codices of Revúca (J. Polívka, M. Dzubáková), highlights the limitations arising from the marginalisation of the available materials, offers precise records from the Codices of Revúca on the texts for the interpretation of the fairy tale and, finally, corrects the information on one of the key texts from this source, the letter written by S. Reuss on December 17, 1843, the full translation of which forms part of the text in the annex. The second (analytical) part of the article deals with the contextualisation and comparison of three commentaries on the Berona fairy tale (S. Reuss, J. Francisci, S. Ormis). All three texts are fully available in the annex.
      PubDate: Thu, 28 Mar 2019 00:00:00 GMT
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