Web pages of Slovenians across the world
This article is an abridged version of the BA thesis entitled “Popular Culture and the Global Slovenian Community on the Web”, which was written following a research surrounding the problematic of Slovenians emigrants and the identity of young Slovenians that represent second, third or other generation offspring. The main question surrounding this population is the extent to which they can still be perceived as the representatives and carriers of Slovenian culture. As they are the ones who are increasingly using the World Wide Web, particularly in conjunction with popular culture, they cannot therefore be neglected when talking about Slovenian culture and the common Slovenian cultural space at the present time. Through a rethinking and examining of this problematic, further questions have arisen. This article is therefore drafted as an overview and evaluation of the current web production of Slovenians around the world and gives suggestions as to its resolving, but not as a final solution of this complex and extremely relevant problem.
KEY WORDS: Slovenian communities, Slovenian identity, popular culture, World Wide Web
In this article I am trying to determine the role of the World Wide Web in the contemporary notion of the Common Slovenian Cultural Space. This new medium has the potential to overcome territorial obstacles, thereby giving the parties involved means to communicate and exchange experiences and thereby contributing to and redefining Slovenian culture today. I have set three hypotheses, which gave my research a basis and a conceptual frame. First, I wanted to know whether the web pages of organizations that are responsible for Slovenians outside of Slovenia, offer hyperlinks to web pages of other Slovenian communities around the world. Second, I assumed that the web pages of Slovenians around the world form a virtual community of Slovenians around the world. Finally, I tested the hypothesis whether the web pages of Slovenians around the world were created (predominantly) for the Slovenian youth and are therefore giving more emphasis to popular culture. The starting point of my research were the web pages of agencies established for Slovenians outside of Slovenia, and of those who are active in this field. I progressed by exploring hyperlinks on those pages until I could not find any more links to pages of Slovenians outside of Slovenia. I examined the (inter) connectivity between web pages within one Slovenian community, between web pages of different Slovenian communities, between web pages of Slovenian communities around the world and web pages from Slovenia, the purpose of specific web pages, fields of interest of specific communities and history of specific web pages. In the end, I gave some basic conclusions referring to initially set hypotheses. These had to be dismissed, at least to a certain extent. Therefore, I proposed a few recommendations for the policy makers on how to institutionalize ways to stimulate young generation of Slovenians around the world to communicate between themselves and with the inhabitants of Slovenia, by addressing themes deriving from.
Slovenian popular culture. In this manner I suggest a common Slovenian web portal, where Slovenians from all around the world, including Slovenia, could meet, exchange experiences and ideas, forming in that way a Slovenian virtual community.