Where were they until now?" Aging, care and abandonment in a Bosnian town

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6 Scopus citations


This article delves into Bosnia-Herzegovina, and especially into the town of Bihać, to ethnographically examine the changing nature of the state and family as visible through practices of elder care. I use my ethnographic data gathered at a nursing home Vitalis in Bihać, and especially the predicament of an elderly Bosnian woman whom I call Zemka, to argue that both the state and family in postwar and postsocialist Bosnia-Herzegovina materialize as semi-absent. In the process of unpacking these multiple semi-absences, I reveal the lived effects of changing postwar and postsocialist state, and altering kinship relations as they affect "ordinary" people.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3-57
Number of pages55
JournalEtnoloska Tribina
Issue number38
StatePublished - Dec 2015


  • Aging
  • Care
  • Family
  • Semi-absence
  • Socialism and postsocialism
  • The state
  • War and postwar

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cultural Studies
  • Anthropology


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