Mirjana Stošić: Being-with(out) Balkan Eulogy for the Excess

This paper intends to show the significance of the specific hegemony of coded interpretations in the contemporary Western cultural relation to “cultural otherness”. Rendered through the West-East dichotomy, certain discursive issues of identity and difference, human and nonhuman, and the phenomena of race, nation, ethnic group, class, and gender are formulated within a polarized paradigm of Western thought. “Balkan” is theoretically made, unmade, and remade continuously and with all the consequences that it carries. To think of “Balkan” is to unthink the thinking itself, to rephrase, rename, reclaim the thinking. I intentionally use words aligned with language, with the “corpus” of thinking, the border point of the corporeality of thinking. It means to rewrite, to unwrite; not to commence but to suspend, to defer finishing, to safeguard the openness of the questions of/on “Balkan”; to inhabit the interruption that this non-European other punctures in the vivid, colourful, and tightly knit canvas of Europe.