55 / 2022
Ulf Brunnbauer

Introduction: Talking Past Each Other and Other Catch-22 Situations: States, Emigration, and “Diasporas”

Neither migrants nor minorities always behave the way their governmentswant them to. This reality is a lesson that Yugoslavia, in both its embodiments,frequently made—amplified by the fact that both the interwar kingdom and thepost-war communist regime pursued ambitious nation-building projects. Theseprojects addressed not only the domestic population but also emigrants comingfrom its territory. In a region where minority issues and migration intersected incomplex ways, such projects could go only wrong, one might have predicted. Andthey often did when policymakers and local bureaucrats struggled with inherentlycontradictory agendas.