Everyday-Life of the French Family Playoust in Serbia and Yugoslavia (1934–1949) Cover Image

Everyday-Life of the French Family Playoust in Serbia and Yugoslavia (1934–1949)

Author(s): Vladimir Lj. Cvetković
Subject(s): History
Published by: Institut za noviju istoriju Srbije
Keywords: France; Serbia; Yugoslavia; the Playoust family; everyday life; economic relations; Smederevska Palanka

Summary/Abstract: Many firms with foreign capital, among which the French one made up a considerable part, were active in Yugoslavia during the inter-war period. The investment of capital didn’t signify only investment of money or transfer of technology and know-how, but also circulation of people and ideas which often connected quite distant countries. Part of that „living bridge” which connected Yugoslavia and France in that way, were members of the Playoust family who moved in 1934 as a consequence of the great economic crisis, together with their fi rm for making cogs and machine-maintenance, from Tourcoing, a well-known centre of textile industry, to Smederevska Palanka. In this small town where the initial industrialization was only just beginning and which harbored only few Frenchmen who worked in the Jasenica wagon factory, which was also owned by French capital, the Playoust family, comprising several generations, was compelled to introduce considerable changes in their way of life so as to blend with the local community. These changes included changes in lodging, clothing, food, everyday life-rhythm, doing business, associating, education… The result of these changes which were quite small in some segments of life and very signifi cant in others, was a very successful integration, particularly of the younger family members in the social environment in which they elicited credit and respect of their Serbia fellow citizens. With these same fellow-citizens the Playoust family survived all the tribulations of the WWII, only to be unexpectedly bitterly disappointed after it: in the course of nationalization they were deprived of their fi rm and everything they acquired in Yugoslavia until 1949. When they left, they took along only fi fteen years of experience of living and working in a country they thought they had got acquainted with.

  • Issue Year: 2007
  • Issue No: 1-2
  • Page Range: 20-42
  • Page Count: 23
  • Language: Serbian