Romani Minorities on the Margins of Post-Yugoslav Citizenship Regimes

CITSEE Working Paper No. 2013/31

33 Pages Posted: 1 Feb 2014

Date Written: 2013


The main objective of this paper is to map how Romani minorities were positioned in the context of post-Yugoslav citizenship regimes’ transformations and to observe possible trends throughout post-Yugoslav space regarding their positioning. The paper establishes that due to historical as well as contemporary hierarchical inclusions, many individuals identified as belonging to Romani minorities faced specific obstacles in access to citizenship in most Yugoslav states, where they de facto resided. Consequently, it gives an illustration of citizenship constellations in which many Romani individuals found themselves as non-citizens at their place of residence and usually without the status of legal alien with permanent residence as well as with ineffective citizenship of another post-Yugoslav state. Additionally, it also examines the hierarchical positioning of Romani individuals, who are citizens at their place of residence and, at least de iure, enjoy a certain scope of minority rights. Borrowing terms from postcolonial theory and following the latest developments in Romani studies, this paper argues that Romani minorities were caught in-between different processes of post-Yugoslav citizenship regimes’ transformation, and therefore cannot be considered as the ultimate Other, but as the post-Yugoslav Subaltern.

Keywords: Romani minorities, citizenship, post-Yugoslav states, statelessness, minority rights

Suggested Citation

Sardelic, Julija, Romani Minorities on the Margins of Post-Yugoslav Citizenship Regimes (2013). CITSEE Working Paper No. 2013/31, Available at SSRN: or

Julija Sardelic (Contact Author)

University of Edinburgh ( email )

Old College
South Bridge
Edinburgh, Scotland EH8 9JY
United Kingdom

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