Browsing by Subject "Bosnia and Herzegovina"

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  • Könönen, Anna (2006)
    This is a study of the process of returning. It examines how returnees rebuild homes and social networks in Prijedor area, Bosnia and Herzegovina. Social networks were lost because of the collapse of the former Yugoslavia, war, internal displacement and fleeing. Returning to the area of Prijedor began spontaneously, and was intensive especially during the years 2000 and 2001. The study is based on fieldwork in Prijedor (October-December 2001). The methods were participant observation, writing notes and a detailed field diary, and conducting interviews. This study searches answers to the questions why anyone wants to return to a place from where he and his family, relatives and friends were evicted, and to where they are still not wanted to return. In the discussion about what 'home' means for the returnees, the starting point is Karen Armstrong's argument about 'home' referring to both a place and to social relations. Furthermore, this study examines how the social network is rebuilt, and what are the elements that encourage or possibly discourage it. This discussion is based on Elisabeth Bott's and Jeremy Boissevain's theories of social networks, and additional theoretical discussion is included as the analysis proceeds. The study suggests that the social network is a vital element in survival strategies and in that way also central in the whole process of returning. The emphasis is that the study about social networks is essential especially in an unorganized state or society. It is argued that the environment, the psychological as well as the physical environment, has a vital function in building a social network. Therefore, the larger discourse in this thesis is how violence and nationalism are connected in daily life, and what would be possible actions that might prevent the rise of violent nationalism, in this case, ethnonationalism (Stanley Tambiah) and constitutional nationalism (Robert Hayden). The returnees encountered various obstacles, and even though international organizations and local Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) gave irreplaceable assistance, many challenges were left to tackle. The legacy of Tito's socialism and the 'transition' also influenced the work of the organizations. The study shows that one of the discouraging elements was bureaucratic ethnic cleansing, a term introduced by Robert Hayden. He considers both bureaucratic ethnic cleansing and direct violence as consequences of the same logic in different social settings. The discussion of ethnicity and Joel Halpern's analysis of the cyclical sense of time in which 'decades past become yesterday' gave additional body to the theory of 'transferred burden' (siirtotaakka) introduced by Martti Siirala and Sirpa Kulonen. Cyclical sense of time, this study argues, enforces the transfer of the 'burden'. Hence, it is concluded that due to the cyclical sense of time combined with the legacy of 'transition' and the 'transferred burden', self-repetitive historical structures exist producing such internal as well as external forms that create a fertile ground for endemic and external interference of violent nature. The outcome is discouraging elements or even blocks in the process of building new networks as well as in the process of ensuring sustainable peace and well-being. By applying Victor Turner's theory of social drama to the cases of disturbances in social life, it is suggested that grass-root mediators would be trained. They would collect detailed feedback from all sides of the schism, process it, and share it as constructive feedback, for all parties again. It is also shown that it would be possible for the government – later on the people – to change some of the disintegrative features of its ethnic sentiment. Those would especially be the features of constitutional nationalism, state chauvinism and bureaucratic ethnic cleansing.
  • Kedrin, Ivan (Helsingin yliopisto, 2018)
    The research belongs to the sphere of anti-corruption and attempts to enrich the knowledge on Bosnia and Herzegovina's anti-corruption policy and its features. The research question is associated with the facts that Bosnia and Herzegovina pursues the inconsistent policy in the sphere and analysts notice flaws in the policy. The present research introduces the assumption that anti-corruption reforms in Bosnia and Herzegovina were aimed at decreasing the level of attention to state's internal policy on the part of international organizations and at simplifying and accelerating the admission to the European Union. The current project is linked to neo-institutionalism as methodological framework. The general purpose of the investigation is to identify the conditions and processes related to the choice of such a policy by the government of Bosnia and Herzegovina. Exploring the research question the qualitative content analysis and expert interviews are applied. The qualitative content analysis is used to take into account reports of international organizations monitoring the process of reforms in the country while expert interviews serve as a method for the profound examination of the Bosnian case. Thus, the results anticipated involve a complete analysis of the anti-corruption agenda in Bosnia and Herzegovina and findings giving a valid explanation for the inconsistencies in its implementation.
  • Hyvärinen, Katariina (Helsingfors universitet, 2016)
    This thesis examines silence and silencing that surrounds conflict-related sexual violence in post-conflict Bosnia and Herzegovina. The war in Bosnia in 1992-1995 was marked by the systematic use of conflict-related sexual violence. Women were targeted by the use of conflict-related sexual violence with the goal of achieving genocide. The post-conflict period in Bosnia provides the context for this research. The theoretical discussion of this thesis consists of two parts, the first consisting of theorisation on the use of conflict-related sexual violence. The second consists of theorisation on silence, silencing of women and the silence surrounding conflict-related sexual violence. The research material consists of the five thematic interviews. The interviewees were chosen based on their primary field and experience, ranging from international politics, the UN women, peace and security agenda, women’s rights, human rights, conflicts, to gender-based violence. All of the interviewees are Finnish. Qualitative content analysis was utilised to analyse the research material. The theoretical discussion of this research provided strong guidance in the analysis of the research material. The analysis of the research indicates that silence and silencing manifest themselves in multifaceted ways. Survivors are silenced due to the shame and stigma associated with conflict-related sexual violence, as well as due to trauma. The analysis indicates that conflict-related sexual violence is an unspeakable war crime. The silence surrounding conflict-related sexual violence was also demonstrated to impact society, as the unspeakability of the events of war was shown to prevent society from facilitating a dialogue on the issue. The research material also illustrated how silence can be understood as a representation. The suicides of some survivors of conflict-related sexual violence were represented as the ultimate silence. The neglect to implement policy and legislation on the part of Bosnian politicians was also demonstrated to constitute a form of silencing. Thirdly, the exclusion of women and thus survivors of conflict-related sexual violence from post-conflict processes, such as peace negotiations, was shown to be a form of silencing, as the exclusion of women signifies the exclusion of women’s issues from the negotiations. Finally, impunity for conflict-related sexual violence was demonstrated to be a form of silencing, as impunity cultivates the silence surrounding conflict-related sexual violence. Ultimately, the research results demonstrate that the impact of the silence and silencing that surrounds conflict-related sexual violence in post-conflict Bosnia is an impediment to how survivors, their families, society, as well as the whole nation, has been able to deal with the past experiences of conflict-related sexual violence that took place during the war.