50 / 2019
Helena Motoh

“Our Bengal Mission”: Negotiation of National and Transnational Agendas by Interwar Yugoslav Missionaries in Bengal

Contrary to the normative apostolic letter Maximum illud, which demanded that missionaries cut their ties with national(ist) and colonial agendas, the missionary project of the Yugoslav interwar missionaries in Bengal was deeply suffused with patriotism, with the newspapers and missionary publications alike portraying the Yugoslav Bengali mission as a symbolic victory of the newly-established Yugoslav state. The present paper aims to interpret this controversy by exploring how men and women missionaries negotiated the conflicting relationship between the transnational missionary project and the nationalist agendas, while also struggling with the controversial decisions of which national agenda to pursue. 
KEY WORDS: missionaries, Bengal, Yugoslavia, patriotism, nation