The Anti-War Resistance during the 1990s in Belgrade
What Messages Come From Remembering Places That No Longer Exist? – The Anti-War Resistance during the 1990s in Belgrade
On Saturday, November 3, 2018, The Centre for Public History (CPH) is organizing a two-hour tour through Belgrade City Center so that we can visit several key locations in the anti-war resistance in public space during the 1990s. Particular attention will be given to predominant events characterizing the first half of that decade.
Although it would be an exaggeration to say that there is no remembrance of the resistance to the war(s) during the 1990s, this statement certainly holds true with regard to public and official remembrance in Serbia. Remembering the various anti-war protests and activities which existed in that period are today mostly limited to the personal memories of their participants or (although not always) to small activist groups. A part of the response to the question of how it was possible for Milošević’s wartime regime to last as long as it did despite its devastating consequences can also be found in his ability to destroy alternatives in which war was a vital factor. This tour will be targeted toward remembrance of one such alternative: the history of the resistance to war in Belgrade during the 1990s – its opportunities and limitations – then ways in which it corresponded to the broader socio-historical context; however, there will also be discussion about the messages from those places of remembrance which are now absent from the public and political memory of Serbia.
The tour will commence at 11:00 am from the Students’ Cultural Center (Kralj Milana #48) and will continue to the Terazija Fountain, Republic Square, and the Duško Radović Theater. The tour will terminate at Pioneer Park near the National Assembly of Serbia.
The Tour Leader will be Marijana Stojčić, Associate at The Centre for Public History.
This public tour, “What Messages Come From Remembering Places That No Longer Exist – The Anti-War Resistance during the 1990s in Belgrade,” is a part of the permanent program of public forums held by The Centre for Public History with a spotlight on this particular decade – “Repressed Memories.” The purpose of this program is to encourage dialog in public space about those processes and events from the past that have helped to shape the present; and also to reflect on remembering and forgetting as values upon which the Serbian society today is being built. Starting with the knowledge that various selectively-chosen representations of the past, where certain presented material can even be emphasized or left out, can create different versions of the same events. At these public tours we will speak about that which is repressed or thought to be unacceptable in public and official remembrance in Serbia. Using the methodologies of “public history” and “history outside the classroom,” which imply a proximity to historical facts and bringing history to the public, The Centre for Public History chooses marginalized, insufficiently-researched, and abandoned historical events; rather, it tries to develop dialog on subjects important to our society by emphasizing public confrontations with the past. As part of our “Repressed Memories” program about the history of the 1990s as seen through public tours to historical locations which, as memories, bear witness to the events of the downfall of Jugoslavija and the conflicts during that decade, The Centre for Public History has up to now organized public forums dealing with crimes against civilians in Kosovo in 1999 as well as a public tour to the site of The Special Anti-War Unit (SAJ) of the Ministry of Internal Affairs in Batajnica where there were massive gravesites of murdered Albanian civilians in Kosovo in 1999, and also a public tour of Belgrade locations remembered for their roles in the conflicts of the 1990s.