Tito, Yugoslavia, and Communism: Historical Revisionism of the Second World War and its Competing Memories
Abstract: The Second World War had a traumatizing effect on Yugoslavia and its people. In addition to being partitioned by Italy, Germany, and other foreign powers, Yugoslavia also experienced a bloody, fratricidal war. In the aftermath of the Second World War, the communist Partisans of Yugoslavia, who were victorious against the Nazi occupying powers, attempted to heal the country's wounds by ... read morepreaching brotherhood and unity amongst the different nationalities. However, for some, the period after WWII and before the break up of the country in 1990s, was nothing but an illusive compromise. By the 1990s, competing claims of victimhood resurfaced, fostered by anti-communist, neo-fascist political elites who advocated for Yugoslavia's disintegration. Since then, history books have been revised, socialist-era narratives have been challenged, and sites of memory relating to Tito and Yugoslavia have been destroyed, all which has resulted in dissonant collective memories. This thesis assesses how memories of WWII contributed to the violence of the 1990s and discusses the role of new ruling elites in creating myths of victimhood in order to justify their own power, as well as armed conflict, ethnic cleansing, and political polarization.
Thesis (M.A.)--Tufts University, 2017.
Submitted to the Dept. of History.
Advisor: Peter Winn.
Committee: Peter Winn, David Proctor, and Vida Johnson.
Keywords: East European studies, Slavic studies, and History.read less