Undergraduate Honors Theses

Thesis Defended

Spring 2013

Document Type

Thesis

Department

Women and Gender Studies

First Advisor

Dr. Celeste Montoya

Abstract

Feminist human rights activists make up but a small subsection of civil society in Serbia. These activists embody the epitome of active citizenship through their resistance to the hegemonic culture of denial, nationalism, and sexism. Establishing the link between civil society, transnational feminism, the alternative movement, and the contemporary feminist movement in Serbia became a pivotal site of inquiry for this research. To gain a fuller understanding of the current manifestation of this feminist subsection of the alternative movement, the investigation focused on how feminist civil society has changed and what additional dimensions the emerging generational dynamics have added as well as the role of globalization. Six semi-structured interviews were conducted with three generations of feminist human rights activists in Belgrade. Each interviewee had a multifaceted conceptualization of the research question, which allowed for a variety of additional issues that had been invisible during preliminary research to materialize. The generational dynamics referred to above played a notable role in respondents’ answers. It became clear throughout the research that the evolution of the movement has resulted in an evolution of the feminist theories and approaches needed to tackle contemporary concerns. However, the diversity of feminist approaches and activists shows the maturity of the movement and its ability to take on these issues on a wide, even global, scale by taking the pulse of the society and focusing energy on what will have the greatest effect at the most opportune time.

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