Again on Tradition: Strategic Concept of the Contemporary Studies of Traditional Serbian Spiritual Culture – a Brief Overview Cover Image

Традиција поново. Стратегијски концепт савремених проучавања традиционалне духовне културе Срба – сажети осврт
Again on Tradition: Strategic Concept of the Contemporary Studies of Traditional Serbian Spiritual Culture – a Brief Overview

Author(s): Ivica Todorović
Subject(s): Anthropology
Published by: Етнографски институт САНУ
Keywords: traditional folk spiritual culture; Serbian ethos; transformations; current circumstances; fieldwork; basic strategic concept; systems

Summary/Abstract: This paper provides a brief overview of the studies dealing with the traditional Serbian spiritual culture of the contemporary times, with an emphasis on the folk, religious and mythological beliefs. Therefore, the paper presents a basic, systematically framed concept in addition to posing some other basic questions. The systematically framed concept (which semantically connects the author’s studies and related literature on the subject) especially emphasizes some aspects in regards to continuation and vitality of phenomena related to traditions, especially so mythological and religious dimensions. These, additionally, have seen a reduction versus the processes of revitalization taken place within temporary marginalized phenomena. In this context, a special attention is given to the following relations: pastpresent, myth-ritual, continuity- discontinuity, simplification- details and complexity, universal-particular. More over, the accent is placed on the Christian context (a relation of Christian-non-Christian), particularly on levels and degrees on the role Christianity might play in formation of the folk tradition. Furthermore, some current expressions of ideas and systems, based on the new contents but having traditional influence, are also being discussed. A general conclusion can be drawn from this overview, which places the traditional Serbian spiritual culture (seen as a dynamic complex) at an important cross-road: in the current, contemporary circumstances, the culture faces many challenges of being transformed into totally new appearances, and getting layered even more but at the same time, experiencing considerable reduction within its basic contents. This paper thus discusses more general characteristics and directions of the subject, while numerous examples (as well as various dimensions of the same) were analyzed in the author’s previous work. Consequently, based on these various aspects of the Serbian tradition, the author is planning to write an appropriate synthesis, to be published in a monograph; also, a more complex and detailed research is underway. The aim of the research is to assess processes with essential significance, which will eventually define the status and role of the Serbian tradition in the future. In any case, tradition is again in the spotlight, as having a key significance for solving puzzles of the contemporary social processes.

  • Issue Year: LVIII/2010
  • Issue No: 1
  • Page Range: 201-215
  • Page Count: 15
  • Language: Serbian