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Written by Andrew Hodges
How did scientists who worked in the former Yugoslavia experience the nineties and their aftermath? How did contexts of war, sanctions and economic isolation impact on their work? What role did they themselves play in the remaking of political and scientific orders, over a period marked by post-socialist transition, ‘nationalist’ war and the information revolution?
Drawing on several years of ethnographic research and engagements, this book follows scientists – mostly astrophysicists from Belgrade (Serbia) and Zagreb (Croatia) - as they simultaneously juggled roles as politicians, scientific researchers, university academics, public intellectuals, and as historians of science. It brings political anthropology into dialogue with science studies, describing how many neoliberalising processes were experienced as a hindrance for many scientists based in the former Yugoslav region, and arguing for a renewed focus on the ‘human’ in anthropological studies of science. It also includes extensive interview material conducted with scientists, including with scientists who served in the Milošević and Tuđman governments.