Special issue :Music of the Others. Locating the (Turbo-) Folk Critique

In this paper I address dominant critical discourses of turbo-folk music in Serbia. I suggest that we see music and music related practices as constitutive rather than reflective of identification in order to find a more nuanced ways to understand common discourses of (turbo-) folk critiques and its roles. To that aim, I draw from my long-term fieldwork research in the northern Serbian town of Novi Sad to show how public discourses are played out in private spheres, and also how they are created in and through everyday life. I identify the “anti-folk scene” based on univocal aesthetic exclusion that encompasses people from various social backgrounds and social strata. In conclusion, it could be said that despite its huge popularity and public visibility, turbo-folk remains one of the most important examples of aesthetics of others/other aesthetics in contemporary Serbia.

Marina Simić

Marina Simić

Marina Simić graduate from the University of Belgrade obtaining degrees from the Faculty of Philosophy and the Faculty of Philology and received her Master and PhD degree in Social Anthropology from the University of Manchester, UK. She is currently a Professor of Theories of Culture at Belgrade University.

1. What is turbo-folk music and how can we locate it (in terms of space/place, genre, etc.)?
2. How can we understand the idea that music and music related practices are constitutive rather than reflective of identification?
3. What can we learn about the connection between popular music and politics from the example of turbo-folk?


Southeastern Europe