Projects / Programmes source: ARIS

Social, economic and cultural history of Slovenian emigration 1945–2015

Research activity

Code Science Field Subfield
5.11.02  Social sciences  Ethnic studies  Ethnic studies - humanistic aspect 

Code Science Field
H000  Humanities   

Code Science Field
5.04  Social Sciences  Sociology 
migration history, Slovenian diaspora, Slovenian emigration, cultural and ethnic identities, subjective perceptions of migration processes
Evaluation (rules)
source: COBISS
Researchers (8)
no. Code Name and surname Research area Role Period No. of publicationsNo. of publications
1.  20195  PhD Damir Josipovič  Geography  Researcher  2017 - 2020  329 
2.  17057  PhD Aleksej Kalc  Historiography  Researcher  2017 - 2020  411 
3.  39523  Špela Kastelic  Anthropology  Researcher  2017 - 2020  21 
4.  11240  PhD Marinka Lukšič-Hacin  Ethnic studies  Head  2017 - 2020  530 
5.  17547  Špela Marinšek    Technical associate  2017 
6.  08369  PhD Mirjam Milharčič Hladnik  Culturology  Researcher  2017 - 2020  619 
7.  32551  PhD Marijanca Ajša Vižintin  Linguistics  Researcher  2018 - 2020  665 
8.  05801  PhD Janja Žitnik Serafin  Literary sciences  Researcher  2017 - 2018  374 
Organisations (2)
no. Code Research organisation City Registration number No. of publicationsNo. of publications
1.  0507  Institute for Ethnic Studies  Ljubljana  5051517000  4,561 
2.  0618  Research Centre of the Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts  Ljubljana  5105498000  63,150 
A complete overview of voluntary and forced migration from Slovenian ethnic territory since 1945 and of the Slovenian diaspora in this period of time will be made. Slovenia lacks a complete presentation that would join social, economic and cultural aspects of Slovenian emigration from 1945 up until today, and interpret them within the recent historical development of Slovenia on the one hand and the larger European migration context on the other. Overviews of European migration history do not include Slovenian emigration due to the fact that most literature on this subject is dispersed and linguistically unavailable to foreign readers. The findings of numerous studies made in Slovenia in these past decades are not much more accessible to Slovenian users either as they have not been systematically summarised yet into a comprehensive survey. Furthermore, Slovenian historiography has treated emigration topics separately from other historical processes. Research objectives are: to join the existing findings, systematise, classify and define the periods from 1945 up until today, assess the significance of Slovenian emigration during individual periods of time, and integrate it in general Slovenian history; to interpret selected aspects within the international context and compare them with similar flows at European level; to place Slovenian voluntary and forced migration on the map of European history of these past seven decades after the second world war – a history of voluntary and forced migrations that have shaped the development of Europe and its present image. The originality of the project and of the expected results The project will offer for the first time to Slovenian and foreign users a complete overview of Slovenian emigration since 1945 in the form of a comprehensive monograph with user-friendly tables and maps, which will be made available for study and teaching purposes at the university level as well as for general users. The most important novelty in the methodology and the final results of the project is in its simultaneous consideration of the following three aspects: the general historical aspect that will contextualise the occurrence of emigration and the resulting diaspora into the economic, social and political events in the periods between 1945 and 2015; the cultural-historical aspect that will study the cultural perspective of the phenomenon in all the studied eras, with a focus on the questions of identity, the organisational forms of the Slovenian diaspora in different parts of the world, its cultural production and its cultural relations with the country of origin; the human-centred aspect that will offer a view of the theme of emigration and diaspora through the case studies of personal and collective experience of the migration process and subjective interpretations of the dynamics within the framework of the heterogeneous migration communities. Relevance and the potential influence of the results: Completing the result of the current project (the history of Slovenian emigration from the mid-19th century till 1945), the monograph will represent the second half of a complete social, economic and cultural history of Slovenian emigration. Like the first monograph, this second one will also be put on the project website with free access to the entire text and images. It will be first published in Slovenian language and then translated into English with the financial support from the Slovenian Research Agency and the Slovenian Government Office for Slovenians Abroad. Thus it will be immediately applicable – among other – to EMMIR, an international study programme in which members of the project team participate. The monograph will have impact on the European reception of Slovenian emigration and it will induce the integration of Slovenian emigration history into some vital data bases and studies on European migration.
Significance for science
In the last decade, migrations have been one of the most topical and relevant themes in the humanities and social sciences, nationally and internationally. The research topic is socially important because it includes the most recent period of migrations (within the last period, that is, since the Slovenian independence in 1991, the time since the beginning of the economic crisis, from 2008–2015, will be addressed specifically).   The topic follows the state development policies, as the Act Regulating Relations between the Republic of Slovenia and Slovenians Abroad in Articles 36 and 37 stipulates particular attention to the research of the past and present social reality of Slovenian diaspora.   The originality of the project result, that is, an overview of Slovenian emigration in book form, is in the fact that nothing similar has ever been done, either in Slovenia or internationally. The originality is in the comprehensive approach to the subject of the study and in the analyses and their interpretation that will consider connections between emigration and other historical events and the relations between emigrants and the country of origin. The originality of the project is in its focus on the cultural, social, economic and other transfers that were made possible by migrations and relations between the homeland and the Slovenian diaspora.   On the international scale, the project's originality is in that the overview is conceived thematically through three fundamental aspects and is merely framed by the chronological boundaries, rather than defined by them. The concept of the proposed project subordinates the usual chronological classification of migration waves to the actual development phases. The intertwining of the emigration and immigration dynamics, the complexity of the cultural, political, social and economic factors within the migration processes on the collective (national) level as well as on the individual level are elements that reflect an innovative, modern approach to creating an exhaustive overview of Slovenian emigration.   The originality is confirmed by the human-centred aspect of the project and its final result. On this level, individual migrant stories will be presented through a history of the last seven decades, to show the readers the complexity of decisions, experiences, identity choices and challenges. This will help the project humanise multitudes of migrants from the past and give them voices, which in turn can significantly deepen the understanding of migrations today, when Europe and Slovenia are no longer the places of mass emigration, but the final destination of immigration.
Significance for the country
The project will have a direct social impact on:   1) the state administration and a more modern social and cultural development of the Slovenian society, which will be achieved when considering the research results and findings of the project in formatting further policies and strategies of the attitude the Republic of Slovenia takes towards Slovenian emigration and Slovenian diaspora;   2) better quality of life of Slovenian emigrants on the social and cultural levels (through increased awareness, positive reception, re-examination of stereotypes, etc.);   3) a greater awareness of the common cultural space of the “three Slovenias” – the country of origin, the areas across the borders and the Slovenian diaspora, which encourages the keeping and strengthening of a national identity, both in Slovenia and outside of it;   4) the study and protection of the cultural heritage that is created and retained in the Slovenian diaspora.   Measures for use and dissemination of results The final monograph will be freely accessible on the Internet. It will be adapted for use in the educational process in secondary schools. By securing additional funding from calls at the Slovenian Research Agency and the Office for Slovenians Abroad, the monograph will be translated into English. This will make it accessible to foreign researchers, and make it directly useful for the international student programme EMMIR (European Master in Migration and Intercultural Relations), in which members of the project group participate, as well as for other study programmes.   Co-financing from other sources The close connection of the project to the research programmes and the ongoing national and international projects of both participating institutes ensure financial coverage of the project. Based on the previous experience of the project leader and the project group members, the funds for the organisation of an academic conference, the translation of the final monograph into English and the presentation of the project result at national and international conferences will be obtained from other sources.
Most important scientific results Interim report, final report
Most important socioeconomically and culturally relevant results Interim report, final report
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