It is by now an accepted truth that liberalism is in crisis amid a surge of nationalism, populism and authoritarianism around the world.
Most recently, liberal ideology and governance have been further strained by the Covid-19 pandemic, which has restricted international travel and freedom of movement and severely tested inter-state cooperation. The Balkans, which have long been viewed as the European ‘Other’—the preserve of atavistic nationalist impulses deemed foreign to liberal Europe—are now no longer seen as an outlier and are even considered by some analysts as having presaged the broader crisis of liberalism in the West. The current moment is propitious to reassess nationalism in the Balkans in comparative perspective.
How has the crisis of liberalism manifested itself in South East Europe over recent years and is there anything specific about nationalism in the region? How do current trends compare to previous Balkan nationalisms? And what variations can be observed in the ways that nationalism manifests itself across the region? A distinguished panel of scholars of nationalism and of the politics, sociology and history of South East Europe will focus on these questions.
Meet our speakers, moderator and chair
Florian Bieber (@fbieber) is a Professor of Southeast European History and Politics and Director of the Centre for Southeast European Studies at the University of Graz, Austria. He holds a Jean Monnet Chair in the Europeanisation of Southeastern Europe. He is the coordinator of the Balkans in Europe Policy Advisory Group (BiEPAG). He studied Political Science and History at Trinity College (USA), the University of Vienna, and Central European University (Budapest). Recent publications include Debating Nationalism (Bloomsbury 2020), The Rise of Authoritarianism in the Western Balkans (Palgrave 2020) and Negotiating Unity and Diversity in the European Union (Palgrave 2021, with Roland Bieber).
Dejan Jović (@DejanFpzg) is Professor of Political Science at University of Zagreb and Visiting Professor at University of Belgrade. He received his PhD from LSE (1999), and was Jean Monnet Fellow at European University Institute in Florence (2000) and Lecturer in Politics at University of Stirling (2000-2010). He was Chief Political Analyst to the President of the Republic of Croatia (2010-2014). Professor Jović is the author of Yugoslavia: A State that Withered Away (2009) and War and Myth: Politics of Identity in Croatia (2017). He was the Editor-in-Chief of Croatian Political Science Review (Politička misao) from 2012 to 2020, and is now the Editor of Tragovi (Footprints): Journal for Serbian and Croatian issues.
Siniša Malešević (@sini_malesevic) is a Full Professor and Chair of Sociology at the University College, Dublin, and Senior Fellow at CNAM, Paris. He is an elected member of Royal Irish Academy and Academia Europaea. His recent books include Contemporary Sociological Theory (with S. Loyal, Sage 2021), Grounded Nationalisms: A Sociological Analysis (Cambridge University Press, 2019), The Rise of Organised Brutality: A Historical Sociology of Violence (Cambridge University Press, 2017) and Nation-States and Nationalisms: Organisation, Ideology and Solidarity (Polity Press 2013). He is author of 10 books, 8 edited volumes and over 100 peer-reviewed journal articles and book chapters. His work has been translated into 13 languages.
Jasna Dragović-Soso is Professor of International Politics and History at Goldsmiths, University of London and a Visiting Professor at LSEE. She is the author of ‘Saviours of the Nation’: Serbia’s Intellectual Opposition and the Revival of Nationalism (Hurst and McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2002) and the co-editor (with Lenard J. Cohen) of State Collapse in South-Eastern Europe: New Perspectives on Yugoslavia’s Dissolution (Purdue University Press, 2008). Professor Dragović-Soso has published numerous scholarly articles and book chapters on intellectuals and dissent; nationalism, state dissolution and international intervention; and on processes of memory construction and transitional justice in the post-Yugoslav region. She is co-editor (with Jelena Subotić and Tsveta Petrova) of the Palgrave book series on Memory Politics and Transitional Justice (https://www.palgrave.com/la/series/14807).
Spyros Economides is Associate Professor in International Relations and European Politics at the London School of Economics and Deputy Director of the Hellenic Observatory. He was a Research Associate of the Centre for Defence Studies at King's College and at the International Institute for Strategic Studies in London. He has also served as Visiting Professor at Dartmouth College, USA, and in the Faculties of Political Science at the Universities of Zagreb, Croatia and Belgrade, Serbia. He was also a Visiting Fellow at the EU Centre in Singapore. He recently published the chapter ‘Greek Foreign Policy since the Metapolitefsi’ in the Oxford Handbook on Greek Politics (OUP 2020), the working paper for the Dahrendorf Forum ‘From Fatigue to Resistance: EU Enlargement and the Western Balkans’ and ‘Kosovo and the European Union’ in the Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Politics.
Listen to the podcast here.
The twitter Hashtag for this event is: #LSEBalkans
LSEE (@LSEE_LSE ) was officially launched at the start of the 2009-10 academic year as a research unit established within LSE's European Institute. Over the last several years LSEE has developed the School's expertise on South East Europe, drawing on the strength of existing and new academic expertise at the LSE.