Columbia University in the City of New York

Harriman Institute

A cover of the Yugoslav feminist magazine, "The Woman Today."



The Woman Today (Žena danas, 1936-1940) and Popular Front Strategy



Please join the Njegoš Endowment for Serbian Language and Culture and the East Central European Center at the Harriman Institute for a discussion on The Woman Today with Stanislava Barać. Moderated by Aleksandar Bošković, Lecturer in Bosnian, Croatian and Serbian.

This event is online only.

The Yugoslav illustrated feminist magazine The Woman Today (Жена данас, 1936–1940) functioned as one of the discursive spots of Popular Front magazine’s network, through which the international movement and ideology of left feminism developed. Addressing this network—comprised of magazines Le Femme dans l’action mondiale 1934–1939, La Mujer Nueva 1935–1941, Mujeres Libres 1936–1938, Jeunes filles de France 1936–1938, Жена данас 1936–1940, Woman Today 1936–1937, Die Frau 1936—and the corresponding Popular Front strategy, this lecture will discuss a number of issues associated with The Woman Today. These issues include women’s autonomous organizations that ran the magazine, specific positions of women editors, prominent discourses and ideologies (antifascism, communism, emancipation, new feminism, feminist internationalism, discourse of motherhood, trade unionism, pacifism), common topics (suffrage, women’s experiences, the Spanish Civil War, world peace), and privileged periodical literary genres (reportage and the short story). By framing the analysis of these agents with the interpretation of the then-Yugoslav political context and the question of the target reading audience (young women), the lecture argues in conclusion that the magazine played a seminal role in educating for the revolution.

Stanislava Barać is a Senior Research Associate at the Institute for Literature and Arts in Belgrade (Research unit: Periodicals in the History of Serbian Literature and Culture). She has authored over fifty articles in scholarly journals and various edited collections, and published two monographs (Thought,” Avant-Garde, 2008, and “The Genre of Women’s Portraiture in Serbian Periodicals, 1920-1941,” 2015). Also, she (co-)edited four collective volumes: The Russian Archive Magazine 1928–1937 and the Culture of Russian Immigration in the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes/Yugoslavia (2015) with V. Matović, Children’s Periodicals: the Yugoslav Heritage 1918–1991 (2019), with T. Tropin, The First World War and Slavic Literatures (2021) with B. Andonovska, and The Magazine Woman Today (1936–1940): The Enlightenment for the Revolution (2022).


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