FFC 270

Radost Ivanova:
Folklore of the Change: Folk Culture in Post-Socialist Bulgaria. Helsinki: Suomalainen Tiedeakatemia (Academia Scientiarum Fennica). 1999. 127 pp.

ISBN 951-41-0840-X (hardback)
ISBN 951-41-0841-8 (paperback)

12 euros (hardback)
11 euros (paperback)

The book analyses the developments taking place in Bulgaria in the years following November 10, 1989. The dynamics of the political and socio-economic changes in that period are comparable only to the most extreme periods of Bulgaria’s history. This study is not a political analysis. It is an attempt to follow the changes in people’s mentality. The book documents the enthusiasm of the negation of a chimera lasting half a century and the euphoria of the search for new roads.

The volume consists of eight studies, seven of which deal with the democratic processes and developments in Sofia: the rallies and processions, the demonstrations and strikes, ’The City of Truth’, including their slogans, banners, symbols and signs. The author elaborates on how the emotional reactions of various social groups gave birth to some new expressions and forms of laughter, as well as to diverse incantations directed at specific parties and party leaders. The last study elaborates on how the socio-political developments are reflected in the everyday life of one Bulgarian village.

RADOST IVANOVA is a professor at the Ethnographic Institute and Museum of the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences in Sofia. She is Editor-in-Chief of the journal Bulgarska etnologia [Bulgarian Ethnology] and the annual Ethnologia Bulgarica. Her scholarly interests are focused on traditional culture, especially South Slavic folklore (epos). She is currently doing research on the ethnological and folkloristic aspects of modern urban culture, tourism and political transformations. Among her books are: Bulgarskata folklorna svatba [Bulgarian Wedding] (Sofia, 1984); Traditional Bulgarian Wedding (Sofia, 1987); Epos-obred-mit [Epos-Rite-Myth] (Sofia, 1992 – 1st edition; 1995 – 2nd edition); Sbogom, dinozavri, dobre doshli, krokodili! Etnologia na promianata [’Farewell Dinosaurs, Welcome Crocodiles!’ The Ethnology of Change] (Sofia, 1997).

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