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Author-Critic Forum, Published Book Conversation: “Nonaligned Modernism: Socialist Postcolonial Aesthetics in Yugoslavia, 1945–1985” by Dr. Bojana Videkanic 
Marjana Krajac (The Ohio State University)
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Book Author:
Bojana Videkanic (University of Waterloo)
Milica Popovic (Central European University)
Nikolina Lazetic (University of Minnesota)
Marjana Krajac (The Ohio State University)
Natasa Jagdhuhn (Independent Researcher)
Cultural Studies, Art History & Fine Art
Author-critic forum
Thursday 14 October, 9:15-10:45 (UTC-4)

Long Abstract

This author-critic forum will discuss the recently published book by Dr. Bojana Videkanic: “Nonaligned Modernism: Socialist Postcolonial Aesthetics in Yugoslavia, 1945–1985” (2020, McGill-Queen's University Press).

The forum will host the author of the book, Dr. Bojana Videkanic, and four critics: Dr. Natasa Jagdhuhn, Dr. Milica Popovic, Nikolina Lazetic, and Marjana Krajac.

Drawing on archival materials, postcolonial theory, and Eastern European socialist studies, “Nonaligned Modernism” chronicles the emergence of late modernist artistic practices in Yugoslavia from the end of the Second World War to the mid-1980s. Situating Yugoslav modernism within postcolonial artistic movements of the twentieth century, Bojana Videkanic explores how cultural workers collaborated with others from the Global South to create alternative artistic and cultural networks that countered Western hegemony. An interdisciplinary book, it highlights Yugoslavia's key role in the creation of a global modernist ethos and international postcolonial culture while shedding new light on intellectual and political collaborations between Yugoslavia (Eastern Europe), Asia, Africa, the Middle East, and the Americas.

Bojana Videkanic is an Associate Professor of contemporary art and visual culture in the Department of Fine Arts at the University of Waterloo, CA. Her research focuses on 20th-century socialist art in Yugoslavia. Her new research project deals with politically engaged Yugoslav art from the 20th century such as partisan art and Naïve art, and its relationships to similar art practices in Mexico, Egypt, Nigeria, and other parts of the world.

Natasa Jagdhuhn is a postdoctoral researcher. In 2020, she defended her Ph.D. thesis “Broken Museality: Reframing World War II Heritage in the Post-Yugoslav Transition,” at the Friedrich Schiller University Jena, Germany.

Milica Popovic is a Visiting Fellow at the Central European University, developing the Global Observatory on Academic Freedom. She obtained her Ph.D. in 2021 in Balkan studies at the Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Ljubljana, and in Comparative Political Sociology at the Doctoral School of Sciences Po Paris, affiliated with CERI (Center for International Studies).

Nikolina Lazetic is a doctoral student at the University of Minnesota. Her work is concerned with sex work, gender, sexuality, and statelessness. She focuses on embodied, affective methods of demilitarization, in a broad, more inclusive sense, in the Balkans and beyond.

Marjana Krajac is a choreographic researcher from Zagreb (Croatia) and Ph.D. Fellow in Dance Studies at the Department of Dance at The Ohio State University. The nexus of her research is contemporaneity and formalism in relation to the emancipatory potentials of dance and its practice.