Threatening archipelagos. Serbian enclaves and minorities in Kosovo

Marcoandrea Spinelli


Enclaves are like islands in the middle of a sea they do not belong to. Seeing that the enclaves I wish to examine are several and all close together, the comparison with an archipelago does seem the most befitting. Enclaves represent, in my opinion, the very essence of the Balkan Peninsula, which, until as recently as twenty years ago, was almost entirely composed of groups of enclaves. The Nineties wars contributed to partially eliminate these Balkan peculiarities.
Most of these groups are now utterly harmless; nevertheless, some of them were, admittedly, the trigger for the last conflict. Others still pose a threat to peace; among those, I believe the Serbian enclaves in Kosovo are the best example.
My project will focus mainly on inhabitants of Serbian villages in Kosovo, which are the first victims of a process of integration the country they live in failed to enable. For this reason, I will not pay close attention to villages of Northern Kosovo, namely those which are north of the river Ibar, since they have a Serbian majority. My field of research will rather thoroughly analyse Southern enclaves in particular, where, through interviews, I will try to find out what it means to be part of a country withouy ethnically identifying with it. Among the interviewees there will be politicians, orthodox monks, and especially ordinary people. In conclusion, my article will focus on Velika Hoča’s village, in Orahovac municipality, where I lived for nine months two years ago.

Słowa kluczowe: enclaves, Kosovo Serbs, Velika Hoca, Srpstvo, Artemije‘s schism

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