Filip Škiljan ; Institute for Migration and Ethnic Studies, Zagreb, Croatia

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In this article the traditional and modern elements of the identity of Serbs
in Croatia are analysed. The author identifies the following key elements or
markers of this identity: Christian Orthodox faith, use of Cyrillic alphabet, social
and political preferences and values, concern for the status of their ethnic
community, loyalty to specific organisations that represent their community,
and memories of the Second World War, i.e. loyalty to Partisans. This article
presents results of in-depth interviewing of a large number of ethnic Serbs
from different regions of Croatia. The author concludes that following the
disintegration of Yugoslavia, Serb identity in Croatia has been through an ambivalent
process. On one hand, there is a process of re-traditionalisation and
“reviving of identity”, which had been neglected in the times of Yugoslavia.
On the other hand, due to the war of the 1990s, Serb ethnic community in Croatia
has been significantly reduced, and there are new fears – especially of the
trend of assimilation. Many Serbs have left Croatia and will not return. Thus,
it is possible that the Serb community is facing disappearance.

Identity; Serbs; Croatia; Croatian Serbs; Tradition