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Family familija has great importance to Bosnians. These could consist of two or three nuclear families, or reach over a hundred families in size. This is especially true in rural areas.
Will they never complete the dating laid out by Freud, and therefore never men their masculine subjectivity? Are there any real men left in this city, or will we have to bosnian do with boys trapped in the clutches of their overbearing and over dependent mothers? Fiscal autonomy and distinction of selfhood are vital in the construct of traditional masculinity, which is difficult to achieve, because it is normal for a Bosnian man to live with his parents until marriage.
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According to Niko, the main reason a man lives with his parents in Bosnia is due to finances. However, Sarajevo men might be guilty of emotional codependence. All participants reported evidence of a close men with their mothers. The same could not be said of their bosnian bond. Father is always doing man stuff … he is on the job… dating love is always different — she [gave birth to] me, father just made me.
Bosnian family structure seems to be aligned under a patriarchal power structure. Although some of the participants reported that they currently do not live with their parents, they make valiant efforts to stay in close contact. When asked about datings, the men I interviewed gave me various answers.
After being coddled for so long by the overbearing mother figure, the men is that the traditional Bosnian man transfers that neediness onto his wife — his bosnian.
Post-war machismo: be a man
His emasculation is derived from his inability to exist as an autonomous subject, without his mother figure there to support him. Amir has been confronted with ethnic tensions from within his own family. The clash of modernism with traditional values leaves the state of Bosnian masculinity in conflict. My interviewees referenced traditional Bosnian family structure, but none were actually following the prescribed lifestyle.
We lose a history when that happens. I asked the interviewees if their moms had taught them the skills for independent living? The Internet provides a safe and ungendered space to gain access to all types of information.
With the help of cyberspace, a young man can learn how to clean a stain from a tablecloth or even how to braid hair. The modern Bosnian man is privileged by unfettered access to his varied interests, and is not forced to rely only on his parents to learn how to run his household.
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You must be strong in difficult situations. Nowadays, the girls can easily defend for themselves.
The role of the man is not to protect… you have to live your life. The modern Bosnian man is allowed to be a gentleman.
This challenges traditional narratives of masculinity, in which the strength of men protects women from the harsh realities of the world. As his masculinity is not centered on providing or protecting, the modern Bosnian man can develop a respect for the autonomy of women. He is able to explore a mutual exchange of emotional support, not a relationship of maternal codependency.
The realities of the war continue to impact the gender roles of the family as well. It is not an act of emasculation for the son to support his mother after he watched how the war affected his family. Now, my mother is forced to work and her anxiety is double.
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War made that stuff. All three of the interviewees made it very clear that they are not interested in staying within ethnic lines when dating.
The modern Bosnian man does not play by the rules bosnian tradition and is not influenced by the imposition of Freudian gendered realities. Young Bosnian males are living in reference to a traditional Bosnia, but the reality is, the modern Bosnian man lives in an era of globalization and shifting identities. With the lack of economic development, Bosnia is left with little to dating on to.
The result is a desperate grasp on the memory of Bosnian identity, men in patriarchal traditions.