Waiting for Macedonia: Identity in a Changing World (Teaching Culture: UTP Ethnographies for the Classroom)

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9781551117195: Waiting for Macedonia: Identity in a Changing World (Teaching Culture: UTP Ethnographies for the Classroom)

Waiting for Macedonia gives insight into one of the most moving moments in post-war European history: the hope for a new Europe in the years following the collapse of communism. In this ethnography, Thiessen explores the different ways in which identity has been negotiated in Macedonia since the disintegration of Yugoslavia. In contrast to more familiar approaches to the Balkans—which emphasize tradition, rural life, and women in the contexts of kinship and marriage—Thiessen here investigates the everyday habits of a group of young professional women in Skopje. Using research data spanning eight years (1988-96), she traces key aspects of their life, including family relationships, television and shopping habits, cafe life, and attitudes to work. At the same time, she also raises larger questions about Macedonian, Balkan, and Eastern European notions of identity, suggesting that western discourses about former socialist countries may in turn be influencing the way young urban Macedonians see themselves.

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About the Author:

Ilka Thiessen is a Professor of Anthropology at Malaspina University-College (Nanaimo, BC). She has written extensively on Macedonian culture and identity.

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