(Guest Researcher)



I am a Popular Music Studies scholar with a strong international academic record spanning Serbia, Britain, Finland, Switzerland and currently Austria. My primary field of expertise is concerned with issues of identity, power and politics in Balkan popular music across the former Yugoslav region, notably Serbia. However, the scope of my research broadens to include such diverse phenomena as queer karaoke practices, music-cultural articulations of "Balkan difference" in various diasporic contexts, and the political and cultural meaning-making in contemporary music festivals and "alternative" popular music scenes across Europe. I am the recipient of many research fellowships, with the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Individual Fellowship 2020 being the most prestigious one (to be used from April 2022 at Dublin City University). My work ultimately aspires to bridge the gap between music scholarship and activism.

As an external postdoctoral affiliate to Vienna's Music and Minorities Research Center (MMRC), I will explore the idea of Otherness associated with the "Balkan difference" and its multiple expressions in popular music practices of Vienna's ex-Yugoslav diaspora. The aim of this small-scale ethnographic project will be twofold. The first is to chart the ways in which Vienna's contemporary "Balkan" (or Balkan-inspired) popular music scene is being shaped, socially stratified, and made meaningful. The second one is to scrutinize the complexities and ambiguities of different power dynamics within Vienna's ex-Yugoslav diaspora by focusing on two aesthetically and ideologically different public sites of Vienna's ex-Yugoslav/Balkan music production and consumption as case studies.

This research project builds on a series of studies on Balkan music and Vienna's minorities, conducted by Hemetek, Sağlam and Bajrektarević at the Department of Folk Music Research and Ethnomusicology of mdw – University of Music and Performing Arts Vienna (2005–2009). While I acknowledge their valuable contributions to a better understanding of Vienna's diaspora music scene, I wish to go one step further and examine a complex dynamic of inclusion and exclusion, belonging and otherness, commonalities and differences across multiple modes of differentiation (such as ethnicity, religion, gender, or class) in Vienna's ex-Yugoslav community, as articulated in and through their popular music practices.

This research project is sponsored by the Finnish Cultural Foundation.