Toponyms and the Political and Ethnic Identity in Serbia


  • Ljubiša Rajić



In the course of the last 150 years about 25 place-name changes have taken place in Belgrade. Some were more significant than others, and some of the renamed places have suffered as many as six name changes. These changes are part of a blanket process that includes renaming of state administration institutions, research institutes, schools, universities, factories, museums, sport clubs, etc., as well as personal names. This process reflects political, economic, demographic, and cultural changes serving the purpose of constructing and reconstructing political, ethnic, religious, and cultural identity, as well as political relations, and history. In this paper the author discusses this renaming process, its causes and consequences, as well as its potential for constructing and reconstructing reality.