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Serbia's Antibureaucratic Revolution: Milošević, the fall of communism and nationalist mobilization

Nebojša Vladisavljević
Palgrave Macmillan (4 August 2008)

Serbia's Antibureaucratic Revolution: Milošević, the fall of communism and nationalist mobilizationIn the 1980s, a wave of popular unrest swept across the eastern part of Yugoslavia. These events peaked in the 'antibureaucratic revolution' - a series of large rallies and demonstrations of industrial workers, Kosovo Serbs and other groups, which were strongly backed by Milošević - and in a counter-mobilization of Kosovo Albanians. The levels of mobilization surpassed those in most East European states at the time of communism's collapse, and the consequences were no less dramatic. Yet these events and their implications remain largely unexplored two decades later.

Blending narrative with analysis, Nebojša Vladisavljević reveals that the antibureaucratic revolution was the most crucial episode of Yugoslav conflicts after Tito. Drawing on primary sources and cutting-edge research on contentious politics, he explains how popular unrest contributed to the fall of communism and the rise of a new form of authoritarianism, competing nationalisms and the break-up of Yugoslavia. This book sheds new light on the meteoric ascent to power of Slobodan Milošević and on the making of the contemporary Serb-Albanian nationalist conflict in and over Kosovo.

Dr Nebojša Vladisavljević is a tutorial fellow in the Government Department, LSE.

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Reviews

'This is an exceptionally original contribution to scholarship of the former Yugoslavia. Focusing on a crucial period of grassroots mobilizations in Serbia, Kosovo, Vojvodina and Montenegro during the second half of the 1980s, Vladisavljevic shows how these struggles and the interactions between regime elites and the masses they engendered shaped the dramatic events of the 1990s and beyond. He situates his fascinating empirical findings in the context of comparative politics literatures on regime change and social movements, and shows that the descent into divisive nationalisms was at least as much the outcome as the cause of political protest and elite-mass interactions. An outstanding work that will interest both regional specialists and scholars of comparative politics.'
Sumantra Bose, professor of International and Comparative Politics, LSE

'This is a timely and ground-breaking piece of work which revisits one of the key developments that took place twenty years ago in the 'former' - Socialist Federative Republic of Yugoslavia and led to the break-up of that country...Vladisavljevic takes a completely fresh approach to this topic and sheds new light upon it.'
Robert Hudson, reader in Contemporary History and Cultural Politics, University of Derby

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