thumb|right|250px|Flag_of_SFRY bordered with the SFRY country outline] Yugo-nostalgia (Croatian, Serbian, Bosnian and Slovenian: "jugonostalgija"; cyrillic: "југоносталгија", Albanian: "Jugonostalgjia") is a little-studied cultural and psychological phenomenon occurring among some citizens of the former Yugoslavia, specifically toward the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (SFRY). While its anthropological and sociological aspects have not been clearly recognized, the term, and the corresponding epithet "Yugo-nostalgic", is commonly used by the people in the region in two distinct ways: as a positive personal descriptive, and as a derogatory label.

In its positive sense, Yugo-nostalgia refers to a nostalgic emotional attachment to idealized positive aspects of the SFRY. These are often promoted by left-wingers in the Western world who supported the continued existence of the old Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, and some sectors of the urban populations in the former Yugoslav republics , described as one or more of: economic security, socialist ideology, multiculturalism, internationalism and non-alignment, history, customs and traditions, and an allegedly more rewarding way of life. These are opposed to the perceived faults of the successor countries, which are still burdened by the consequences of the Yugoslav wars and are undergoing the process of economic and political transition. The faults are variously identified as parochialism, national chauvinism, corruption in politics and business, the disappearance of the social safety net, economic hardship, income inequities, higher crime rates, as well as a general disarray in administrative and other state institutions.

In the negative sense, the epithet has been used by the supporters of the new post-dissolution regimes to portray their critics as anachronistic, unrealistic, unpatriotic and possibly treacherous. In wartime, for example, the adjective has been used used semi-officially in the media of some successor countries to discredit certain avenues of political debate. The term Yugo-nostalgic could have been originally coined precisely for this purpose, as it appeared as a politically motivated pejorative label in government-controlled media, eg. in Croatia, very soon after the breakup of the SFRY.

Present manifestations of Yugo-nostalgia are largely cultural on a leisure, including music groups with Yugoslav or Titoist retro iconography, art works, films, theater performances, and many organized, themed tours of the main cities of the former Yugoslav republics (mostly Belgrade and Sarajevo).

Politically the picture is different, with Yugo-nostalgia gathering little support: most of the supporters tend to be Serbs, and even in Serbia, support for the parties that openly call for reunification of Yugoslavia hovers at only about 2 to 3%. In Slovenia for example, where the country has realigned itself completely into West with both EU and more tellingly NATO memberships, and the economy has bounced back from the post-independence slumps, support for Yugoslav reunification is negligible. Even the Social Democrats of Slovenia, itself the direct successor of the Communist Party of Slovenia during the SFRY days, does not support Yugoslav reunification.

Yugo-nostalgia is also a separate construct from opposing Yugoslavia's dissolution. A higher number of individuals, even though still a minority in proportion to the population, condemn the dissolution of SFRY and demise of Yugoslavism as a predominant ideology. Many of them find support among Third Way Communists or pro-Soviet Communist sympathizers in the West, who blame post-reunification Germany, the European Community, and the United States as the instigators of dissolution troubles in order to wipe the only significant Europe-based neutral Non-aligned Movement member country off the map of Europe [http://www.emperors-clothes.com/articles/Johnstone/Yugo1.html] after SFRY had outlasted its geopolitical usefulness to the West. This belief overlooks the development that other Non-Aligned Movement leader nations have been largely ignored rather than confronted on the geopolitical stage by the West since it emerged as the victor of the Cold War after the Revolutions of 1989. Some of these commentators later indeed became champions of Yugo-nostalgia expressed by reunification of Yugoslavia under the Titoist lines, but most have switched to outright supporting nationalism and the "Greater Serbia" "Greater Croatia" and simliar ideals that ironically do nothing but contradict the ideals of Titoism and mutual respect/unity.

Decline of Yugoslavism

Since the breakup of SFRY, the idea of Yugoslavism has gradually lost popularity. The name "Yugoslavia" was kept by Serbia and Montenegro in their federation, but this was eventually replaced by the counties' individual names. The number of declared Yugoslavs in the region is now much lower than ever before. The last census in Serbia showed approximately 80,000 Yugoslavs, but at this time the country was still known as such. The "Yugoslav language", Serbo-Croatian, is no longer the official language of any of the former state's constituent republics. Few resources are published about the language, and it has no standardizing body. The .yu Internet domain name, which is popular among Yugo-nostalgic websites, is also being phased out.


* Trovesi, Andrea: "L'enciclopedia della Jugonostalgija". In Banchelli, Eva: "Taste the East: Linguaggi e forme dell'Ostalgie", Sestante Edizioni, Bergamo 2006, ISBN 88-87445-92-3, p. 257-274.

ee also

* Ostalgie: the German equivalent
* SFR Yugoslav pop and rock music scene: an important part of Yugonostalgia

External Links

* [http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/bringing-back-tito-790002.html "bringing back Tito" in The Independent, March 2008]
* [http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=5784869 npr .org]
* [http://www.cccs.uq.edu.au/index.html?page=58110 University Queensland]

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