Diaspora organizations, imagined communities and the versatility of diaspora : the case of former Yugoslav organizations in the Netherlands
Faculty of Social Sciences. Communication Sciences
European journal of cultural studies. - London, 1998, currens
, p. 70-85
University of Antwerp
This article takes the case of Former Yugoslav organizations in the Netherlands to investigate how diaspora organizations are central in constructing identities. Contributing to the growing field of studies about Former Yugoslav diasporas, it explores how diaspora organizations play a role as cultural mediators. Drawing from theories of diaspora, imagined communities and transnationalism, we employ diaspora as a versatile tool of analysis, investigating dimensions of diasporic experience, discourse and practice. Data were gathered through a qualitative study including 25 expert interviews and ethnographic observations. The study indicates that there are two types of diaspora organizations, which are labelled exclusive and mixed diaspora organizations, and that there are notable differences between Bosnian, Serbian and Croatian organizations. Organizations are discussed with regard to their aims, activities and discourses about diaspora and their capacity to forge belongings among communities.