Jelena Subotic's research while affiliated with Georgia State University and other places

Publications (48)

Article
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The “digital turn” has transformed the landscape of transitional justice research. A wealth of data has been created through social media channels, and new digitisation tools have made existing data more easily accessible. This article discusses the ethical and methodological dimensions of using digital data and novel technologies in transitional j...
Article
This article explores the relationship between antisemitism and international politics, specifically the potent role that antisemitism plays in the development and maintenance of the global populist international. After briefly sketching the history of modern transnational antisemitism, I make two principal arguments for why antisemitism should be...
Article
Over the past year, a series of controversies have erupted regarding the role of Holocaust scholars in determining whether other, more recent mass atrocities (in China, Myanmar, Syria, and elsewhere) amount to the category of genocide. In this Reflection, I turn to one such controversy: the attempt by Bosnian Serb political elites to use internatio...
Article
This symposium is a follow-up to the 2019 CEEISA/ISA conference ‘International Relations in the Age of Anxiety’ held at the Faculty of Political Science, University of Belgrade, Serbia, in June 2019. The central piece in the symposium is the keynote address by Bahar Rumelili on the untapped potential of existentialism in IR followed by highly engag...
Chapter
The aim of this chapter is to understand how and why the local truth regime concerning the NATO intervention outlived the political regime that created it. Here we probe not only the system of power that created the truth regime around the NATO intervention in Serbia, but also the system that maintained, developed, and diffused it after Milošević’s...
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Transforming armed groups into legitimate political actors is often considered an ideal way to settle armed internal conflicts. In democracies, the efficacy of such approaches depends on the public legitimacy that the citizenry grants them. How does the prospect of Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia's (FARC's) political participation influence...
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This article contributes to the growing scholarship on the relationship between political memory and foreign policy by analyzing how physical sites of traumatic memory serve as locations of foreign policy construction. Specifically, I explore how physical sites (such as concentration camps, killing sites, or memorials) serve to construct foreign po...
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This article explores the relationship between cultural heritage politics and international status-seeking. We advance a two-fold typology of status-seeking that explains why states engage in cultural heritage restoration practices at home and abroad. First, cultural heritage restoration can be an easy way to signal state respect of its multicultur...
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This short essay explores the ways in which the visual and symbolic repertoire of cosmopolitan Holocaust memory has become appropriated to represent other types of historical crimes. Specifically, I examine to what extent has this instrumentalization of Holocaust memory fed into a crisis in cosmopolitan memory and the rise of its nationalized, part...
Article
While archival research most often does not include direct interaction with living subjects, ethical issues surrounding this method are no less acute. These issues are even more profound in studies of violence, where the likely questions are often about life, death, murder, culpability, responsibility, punishment, or remorse. Identifying answers to...
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At stake in this forum are the politics of translation in the study of global politics. More specifically, the following interventions aim to consider the ways that scholars can recenter the utility of language toward more flexible conceptions of relationality. As each contribution reveals, translation is indispensable to individual theorizations o...
Article
Memory Laws, Memory Wars: The Politics of the Past in Europe and Russia, by Nikolay Koposov, Cambridge, UK, Cambridge University Press, 2017, $89.99 (hardcover), ISBN 9781108419727, $29.99 (paperback), ISBN 9781108410168 - Volume 48 Special Issue - Jelena Subotic
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My chapter focuses on the role the Serbian Orthodox Church has played in Serbian politics since 1989, but especially since 2000, with the end of the authoritarian rule of Slobodan Milošević. Centering the discussion on four principal dimensions that capture the Serbian Church’s influence in this period—nationalism, conservatism, homophobia, and rel...
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This article explores the relationship between political memory, state ontological security, and populist movements after state death. When a state dies, ideological space opens up for new state agents to narrate a different version of the past, one that delegitimizes the ideological underpinning of the old state order and creates ontological insec...
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Post-communist states today are dealing with conflicting sources of ontological insecurity. They are anxious to be perceived as fully European by “core” European states, a status that remains fleeting. Being fully European, however, means sharing in the cosmopolitan European narratives of the twentieth century, perhaps the strongest being the narra...
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This article revisits the history of Yugoslavia to trace the unique ways in which the national airline Yugoslav Airlines (JAT) served as a powerful tool of Yugoslav, and then post-Yugoslav, Serbian state identity construction from 1975 to 2013, when JAT ceased to exist. I analyze the complete archives of the JAT Review to trace the stunning reconst...
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The 1955 Afro-Asian Summit at Bandung is regarded as a pivot in the formation of Third Worldism and of coloured solidarity against Western colonialism and global white supremacy. But while this anti-imperialist spirit was no doubt present at Bandung, so were many other spirits, including those of Cold War realpolitik. We consider the different mean...
Article
div class="title">Constructivism as Professional Practice in the US Academy - Volume 50 Issue 1 - Jelena Subotic
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The article contributes to the ‘second wave’ norm diffusion literature by offering a new theoretical lens through which to explain unexpected policy outcomes of international normative interventions. Specifically, the article aims to challenge the international norms scholarship by questioning what power international norms actually have in domesti...
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Yugoslav communism was unique in many ways, most significantly in its departure from Stalinist orthodoxy, political semi-liberalization, and profound ideological focus on supranational Yugoslav identity. The communist regime, however, carried out numerous human rights violations, including political purges, detention of dissidents, extrajudicial as...
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While the recent IR “narrative turn” has greatly improved our understanding of how narratives influence state policy choices, we need to deepen our understanding of how narratives explain policy change. If state “autobiographies” provide such powerful explanations of why states do what they do, how can they change their policies and practices? To u...
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Over the past two decades, a new international regime of individual criminal accountability has emerged as a dominant regulatory mechanism to address gross human rights violations. At the same time, states are still pursuing claims against each other for human rights abuses in front of international courts. These two concepts of responsibility—indi...
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Within the span of three months in 2012/2013, the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) handed down three major acquittal verdicts: two Croatian Army generals, three members of the Kosovo Liberation Army, and a high ranking Serbian army general. This article analyzes the political fallout from the acquittals to make three...
Book
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This book examines the role religion played in the dismantling of Yugoslavia; addressing practical concerns of inter-ethnic fighting, religiously-motivated warfare, and the role religion played within the dissolution of the nation. "A sobering, enlightening and eye opening account on what has happened and may happen again if we persist in our refus...
Book
Full-text available
This book examines the role religion played in the dismantling of Yugoslavia; addressing practical concerns of inter-ethnic fighting, religiously-motivated warfare, and the role religion played within the dissolution of the nation. Reviews "A sobering, enlightening and eye opening account on what has happened and may happen again if we persist in o...
Chapter
Full-text available
When Kosovo declared independence in 2008, Serbia rejected this move as a fundamental threat to its sovereignty, territorial integrity, and national identity. The Serbian government, however, shifted its foreign policy approach in 2010 when it started to gradually relinquish its claim of territorial control over Kosovo through a series of European...
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Twenty years since the onset of the traumatic wars of Yugoslav secession, the countries of the Western Balkans continue to nurture narratives of the past that are mutually exclusive, contradictory, and irreconcilable. The troubling ways in which states in the region remember their pasts provide continuing obstacles in the search for acknowledgment...
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Jelena Subotić explores how the states of the Balkans construct their “autobiographies”—stories about themselves—and how these stories influence their contemporary political choices. By understanding where states' narratives about themselves—stories of their past, their historical purpose, their role in the international system—come from, we can mo...
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The scope and structure of international transitional justice (TJ) advocacy have changed significantly over the last two decades. This article explores two principal ways in which international TJ advocacy has transformed. First, international TJ advocacy has greatly expanded its purpose. While TJ projects used to be discretionary mechanisms for so...
Article
Biljana Plavšić, the former president of Republika Srpska, was indicted by the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes. After she plead guilty and issued a remorseful statement, the prosecution dropped the genocide charges and she was sentenced to 11 years in prison, and s...
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This article offers a fresh look at contemporary processes of Europeanization. Using the Eurovision Song Contest as empirical illustration of how states perform Europeanization, this article makes three principal arguments. First, it challenges optimistic accounts of cultural Europeanization and identifies the limits that the Europeanization projec...
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In anthropology, the concept of cultural intimacy expresses those aspects of a cultural identity that are considered a source of international criticism for the state, but are nevertheless used to provide insiders with a sense of national comfort, understanding, and self-reflexive, ontological security (Herzfeld, 2005). Cultural intimacy helps illu...
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Why does Europeanization—the process of adopting European rules—advance in some countries, while it stalls in others? What explains different European trajectories of otherwise similar candidate states? This article explains foreign policy choices of EU candidate states with an identity-based theoretical framework. In states where European identity...
Article
Over the past two decades, a new international regime of individual criminal accountability has emerged as a dominant regulatory mechanism to address gross human rights violations. At the same time, states are still pursuing claims against each other for human rights abuses in international courts. These two concepts of responsibility - individual...
Article
Why has Serbia’s path toward European integration been fraught with so much difficulty? This article explains Serbia’s reluctance to Europeanize by exploring why Serbian elites persistently refused to fulfill the European Union’s principal requirement—full cooperation with the Hague war crimes tribunal—even when it meant getting off the road to Bru...
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As a political scientist with expertise in human rights and the Balkans, I was invited to provide critical commentary and analysis of Kosovo's declaration of independence in February 2008 for CNN International. I offered an analysis rooted in the understanding and interpretation of international law, foreign policy, and domestic politics of Serbia...
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1 This article explores a fundamental paradox of international justice compliance. Under conditions of strong international pressures and low domestic demand for justice, domestic political elites use international tools and institutions designed to bring justice and provide reconciliation for very different local purposes, such as getting rid of d...

Citations

... Historically, naming elites has all too often involved covert or overt anti-Semitism 6 , which goes hand in hand with populism and illiberal tendencies (Subotic, 2021). In the new rightwing populist discourse, cultural issues are becoming more and more divisive, the enemy is the human rights paradigm and scapegoats are minority groups (Roth, 2017), which further isolates them. ...
... In spite of this, the notion of anxiety has been subject to less-explicit debate than questions regarding the nature of the ontological securityseeking subject discussed above. The literature makes note of different causes of anxiety, such as existential anxiety related to death, feelings of general emptiness resulting from a lack of meaning, or anxiety due to moral pressures (Subotic and Steele 2018;Arfi 2020, 293;Brassett, Browning, and O'Dwyer 2021, 10). It also considers related emotions, such as shame, guilt, or embarrassment, indicating that anxiety is to be understood broadly (Steele 2008;Zarakol 2011;Subotic and Zarakol 2012;Youde 2014;Gustafsson 2015;Bolton 2021). ...
... 83 As Subotic emphasizes, it is incumbent upon researchers to historically contextualize the material and remain transparent about its uses. 84 But researchers engaged in retelling the story of Palestinians note that these documents have value, despite their perhaps malicious intent. Jawad, for example notes that "The Village Files survey, which was intended to destroy Palestinian society, has become, although it certainly was not the intention of those who designed the project, a historical source for the study of economic and social Palestinian history." ...
... The modernist national principle of one nation one state one language is a by-product of the rise of European nationalism since the nineteenth century (Guy, 1989;Lo Bianco, 2009), which was then applied by a number of post-colonial nations as a way of asserting their independence (Spolsky, 2004). This attempt to equate the linguistic landscape and the political map is perhaps based on assumptions that the common language is a "protective layer" that can shield the country from the dangers of the outside world (Kamusella, 2018), and that citizens who speak the (same) language have a close bond to the state (Caraccioli et al., 2020). The reality that this "common" national language is, in most cases, the language of the dominant group is however often overlooked (May, 2018). ...
... The so-called memory wars are unfolding in the international communication space today (Koposov, 2017;Lu, 2020;Smith, 2019;Subotic, 2020). This phenomenon, in the framework of which there is a different, sometimes even opposite, assessment of past events that determine the state legal, socio-economic and even cultural vector of the country's development. ...
... Nation-states may also find themselves on the receiving end of an international politics of emotion advanced by multiple state or non-state actors. Subotic and Zarakol (2020), for instance, discuss how Western European feeling rules concerning the Holocaust were urged upon Eastern European states as the latter sought European Union membership. ...
... In doing so, it seeks to contribute not only to research on Sino-Japanese relations, but to research on the international politics of memory more broadly. This broader literature has explored the links between collective memory and foreign policy (Müller 2002;Zehfuss 2007;Laffey and Weldes 2008;Lawson and Tannaka 2010;Subotić 2019b;Pusca 2014;Dian 2017;Klymenko 2019), the role of trauma in international politics (Edkins 2003;Bell 2006;Resende and Budryte 2013;Klymenko 2016), how the legacies of past wars influence interstate reconciliation (Rose 2005;Auerbach 2009;Mannergren Selimovic 2017;Siddi 2017;Khoury 2018;Gustafsson 2019b), the securitization of collective memory (Mälksoo 2014;Strukov and Apryshchenko 2018) and the relationship between memory and ontological security (Zarakol 2010;Gustafsson 2014;Mälksoo 2015;Rumelili 2018;Subotić 2019a). Even though some of this IR scholarship does refer to forgetting, and the existence of a dialectic between remembering and forgetting is sometimes acknowledged, most research focuses on memory and does not discuss forgetting in detail. ...
... However, research in the regions of Central and Eastern Europe and in the Balkans demonstrates that religion plays an extremely important role in people's self-identification, being a crucial factor in social and political life, and must therefore be taken into consideration (Naletova, 2009, p. 375). The studies devoted to the role of Orthodox religion and the SOC in modern Serbia are often critical, which highlights their controversial influence on socio-political processes, making it hard for Serbia to choose a future-proof political course (Privileged majority church, 2013;Subotić, 2019). At the same time, opinion polls regularly show that the SOC is the most credible institution in Serbia (Hofmeisterová, 2019, p. 505), and even critical publications recognize the role of religion as a historical force in the Balkans (Iveković, 2002, p. 523). ...
... Namely, citizens may feel far more comfortable expressing their true opinions due to the end of open conflict between the FARC and the Colombian government (Gálvis Ramírez et al., 2017). This positive movement could also be linked to general support for the 2016 peace agreement among the Colombian public (Carlin et al., 2019). ...
... In doing so, it seeks to contribute not only to research on Sino-Japanese relations, but to research on the international politics of memory more broadly. This broader literature has explored the links between collective memory and foreign policy (Müller 2002;Zehfuss 2007;Laffey and Weldes 2008;Lawson and Tannaka 2010;Subotić 2019b;Pusca 2014;Dian 2017;Klymenko 2019), the role of trauma in international politics (Edkins 2003;Bell 2006;Resende and Budryte 2013;Klymenko 2016), how the legacies of past wars influence interstate reconciliation (Rose 2005;Auerbach 2009;Mannergren Selimovic 2017;Siddi 2017;Khoury 2018;Gustafsson 2019b), the securitization of collective memory (Mälksoo 2014;Strukov and Apryshchenko 2018) and the relationship between memory and ontological security (Zarakol 2010;Gustafsson 2014;Mälksoo 2015;Rumelili 2018;Subotić 2019a). Even though some of this IR scholarship does refer to forgetting, and the existence of a dialectic between remembering and forgetting is sometimes acknowledged, most research focuses on memory and does not discuss forgetting in detail. ...