Loading Events
Nov 25 Wed

‘Survivors’ Music’ and Transitional Justice in Post-genocide Bosnia


Lecture by Badema Pitic, VHA Research Officer, USC Shoah Foundation Center for Advanced Genocide Research

A quarter of a century after a war and genocide in Bosnia-Herzegovina, the country remains in the process of healing and rebuilding. Over the years, several transitional justice mechanisms, including international criminal tribunal proceedings, reparations for the victims, and commemorations, have been established to address the 1990s war crimes and genocide. Unlike in a host of other countries where a conflict and/or genocide occurred, a truth commission was never established in Bosnia to focus on the 1995 Srebrenica genocide and bring to light the testimonies of both genocide survivors and perpetrators as a means for reconciliation. However, a large part of a transnational community of Srebrenica genocide survivors has been engaged in a local musical practice to narrate, or testify about, their experiences of the genocide. This repertoire of “survivors’ music” (Pilzer 2015), which consists of neotraditional narrative songs, called izvorna, is composed, performed, and consumed by genocide survivors living in Bosnia-Herzegovina and abroad. In this lecture, I will discuss this repertoire vis-à-vis official transitional justice mechanisms, and as a tool through which survivors express and claim their truth about the genocide. I argue that this repertoire acts as a call for justice and recognition, and against the existing genocide denial.

Badema Pitic is a VHA Research Officer at the USC Shoah Foundation Center for Advanced Genocide Research. She earned her Ph.D. in ethnomusicology in 2017 from the University of California, Los Angeles. Her research focuses on the intersections of music, memory, and politics in the aftermath of war and genocide in Bosnia-Herzegovina. Her research interests also include oral history and testimony, transitional justice, and perpetrators’ music.

Part of the Nazir Ali Jairazbhoy Colloquium Series, sponsored by The UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music Department of Ethnomusicology

This event requires a password to view. Please register below to receive your password.


Register in advance for this event. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

Sep 30 Thu
Pop Up Lab: Sound Artist and Composer Alba Triana
Join the UCLA PEER Lab for the first installment in the Pop Up Lab series, hosted by sound artist and composer Alba Triana as she invites us into her workspace and shares her creative process.
Oct 10 Sun
Kol Nidre: Audio-Visual Dramaturgies - Part 2
Part 2 of this 4-part online conference, is called "The Moment and Momentum of Kol Nidre: A Multi-Layered Analysis of Yom Kippur's Grand Overture." What makes the moment of Kol Nidre so unique? In our joint presentation, we will probe the grand overture of the Day of Atonement, liturgically, musically and as a performative event.
Oct 17 Sun
Women's Voices, Women's Souls
Co-presented by TIOH Arts & Culture, Los Angeles Jewish Symphony, Dr. Noreen Green, Artistic Director, and the Lowell Milken Center for Music of American Jewish Experience at the UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music A celebration of Jewish women’s voices, the centerpiece of this concert are excerpts from Women of Valor, an award-winning cantata by composer Andrea Clearfield, performed by members of the Los Angeles Jewish Symphony under the direction of Dr. Noreen Green and featuring Grammy award-winning soprano Hila Plitmann and mezzo-soprano Iris…