Dr Deana Jovanović

Title: Sociological Review Fellow 2017/18
Email: d.jovanovic@keele.ac.uk
Location: Claus Moser Research Centre: Room CM1.10
Contacting me: email

As The Sociological Review Fellow of 2017/2018 I will undertake work on a monograph on ambivalence, hope and the “state by proxy” in an industrial town in Serbia, which is based upon but extends from my PhD research.  I am a member of the Editorial Board of The Sociological Review, Britain's oldest sociology journal. I am also a Research Associate at The Institute for Philosophy and Social Theory.

In 2016 I was awarded a PhD in Social Anthropology by the University of Manchester. My thesis was supervised by Dr Stef Jansen and Dr Madeleine Reeves. From 2011 until 2016, I was a Graduate Teaching Assistant at the University of Manchester. I received Royal Anthropological Institute's Sutasoma Award, for work likely to make an outstanding contribution to social anthropology.

In 2016 and 2017 I carried out postdoctoral research at the Centre for Advanced Studies at the University of Rijeka (Croatia) and at the Leibniz Institute for East and Southeast European Studies (IOS Regensburg).

I have a dual Erasmus Mundus Master´s Degree in Women's and Gender Studies (GEMMA). I graduated cum laude in 2009 at Utrecht University in Gender and Ethnicity. In 2010 I obtained MA award (With Distinction) in Women’s and Gender Studies by the University of Hull. 

My wide-ranging research interests are situated within urban, political, and environmental anthropology, and intersect with sociology, cultural studies, environmental and risk studies, and gender studies. I focus on studying interconnections between anticipations of futures, hope and the state. My research is based on long term ethnographic research in the post-Yugoslav states, in Serbia and Croatia, in industrialised urban environments. I currently have three research streams (which overlap):

The state by proxy
The monograph I am currently developing as The Sociological Review Fellow of 2017/2018 is based on fourteen months of ethnographic research conducted in a copper-processing town in Serbia. It shows how the state-run copper-processing company, from the perspectives of people, “worked” and appeared for its citizens as the “state by proxy”. The everyday presence of the company in its changing modes of ownership and its ambivalent offer of future prosperity is as a site through which transformations of the (post-socialist) state, unequal access to citizenship (in terms of age, gender, and class) and agency are discussed.

Anthropology of the future and ambivalence
I explore ambivalence both as an ethnographic object and as an analytical tool in anthropology. I am interested in ethnographic explorations of ambivalence with regards to the future, and in relation to hope, the state, agency, ethics, affect, and social inequalities. My PhD dissertation explored ambivalence and anticipation of futures, from the perspectives of people, in a copper-processing town in East Serbia.

Environmental issues (and ambivalence)
I research effects of industrial pollution. In 2016 I contributed to the special issue of Ethnos “Economic Growth or Ecologies of Survival?” edited by Professor Thomas Hylland Eriksen and Dr Elisabeth Schober, with an article entitled “Prosperous Pollutants: Bargaining with Risks and Forging Hopes in an Industrial Town in Serbia”.

Urban infrastructures
I explore the ways in which people live with urban infrastructure (e.g. electricity, district heating, and sewage systems). Recently, I explored transformation of district heating in two industrial towns in Croatia and Serbia. The article which stems out from this research will be published in an edited volume Post-Socialist Urban Infrastructures, edited by Tauri Tuvikene, Wladimir Sgibnev and Carola S. Neugebauer (Routledge’s Planning and Urban Design book series).  


2018. “The thermodynamics of the social contract: infrastructure, state and moral ruminations in case of district heating in Bor (Serbia) and Rijeka (Croatia)”, in Post-Socialist Urban Infrastructures, edited by T. Tuvikene, W. Sgibnev and C. S. Neugebauer, Routledge’s Planning and Urban Design book. 

2018. “'Fake' repairs as 'at least something': ambivalence, affect and simulation in a Serbian industrial town”, Südosteuropa (special issue “Urban ethnographies”, ed. G. Duijzings)

2018. “Engaging with precarity: the fatiguing job seeking journey of an early career anthropologist”, Revista de Dialectología y Tradiciones Populares

2016.  “Prosperous Pollutants: Bargaining with Risks and Forging Hopes in an Industrial Town in Serbia”, Ethnos: Journal of Anthropology.  DOI: 10.1080/00141844.2016.1169205

2016 “Anthropology and the study of contradictions”, HAU: Journal of Ethnographic Theory. Vol 6, No 3: 1–6.


2016. “Heroic Endurance under the Smoke: Ethnographic Notes from an Industrial Town in Serbia”, Toxic News, https://toxicnews.org/2016/11/08/heroic-endurance-under-the-smoke-ethnographic-notes-from-an-industrial-town-in-serbia/



2011. “On Gender, Subjectivities and Experiences: Facing the Past and Feminist Politics of Solidarity”, Philosophy and Society 22(1): 219–243.

2008. “Identity for Sale – Construction of National Identity for the Needs of Tourism”, The Journal of the Institute of Ethnography of Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts, 56(1): 101-115.