Postsocialistiske svar: Skolelærere og „moderniseringen” af grundskolen i Brčko, Bosnien- Hercegovina


  • Marie Larsen Ryberg



Marie Larsen Ryberg: Post Socialistic Answers: Schoolteachers and the “Modernising” of Elementary School in Brcko, Bosnia-Hercegovina

Since the disintegration of Yugoslavia, international organisations and scholars have stressed the problems of primary education in Bosnia-Herzegovina, pointing to the “legacy” from socialist times and a need to “modernise” the school system. The aim of this article is to analyse the ways in which schoolteachers in Brčko, Bosnia-Herzegovina relate to the two most prominent NGOs present in Brčko and their efforts to “modernise” the teaching methodologies and implement “democracy” and “civic education”. The article argues that an understanding of the teachers’ practices should include a broader analytical framework than conceptualising them as a “legacy” or “backward.” For a more nuanced understanding, the article takes three analytical approaches. First, it argues that the teachers’ practices and ideas in relation to knowledge should be viewed as connected to a socialist narrative of modern development. Second, it points to gift-giving as a way of understanding how the teachers draw on teaching methods such as lectures and learning by heart. Third, the article points to a model of the socialist system, and suggests that an appreciation of the teachers’ exclusive role as bureaucrats in a socialist system of allocation is central to an understanding of their practices today. The article thus unfolds the different ideas, motives and structures that shape the teachers’ practices as a post-socialist respond rather than as a “legacy.”

Keywords: Post-socialism, Bosnia-Herzegovina, education, modernization, knowledge, gift-giving. 





Ryberg, M. L. (2010). Postsocialistiske svar: Skolelærere og „moderniseringen” af grundskolen i Brčko, Bosnien- Hercegovina. Tidsskriftet Antropologi, (62).