Tea party with Ildiko Erdei: The role of design in the modernization of socialist Yugoslavia

The starting point of the lecture “Good design for a better society: The aestheticization of everyday life in socialist Yugoslavia” by Ildiko Erdei is a reflection on what constituted good design and what was its role in the Yugoslav society in the 1950s.

The new socialist state was not at all an exception in this regard, on the contrary – it was in line with modernization trends and currents in Europe and worldwide. The lecture will, on the example of housing, furnishing and apartment interiors, show how the concept of good design was conceived and set up as a tool for the (socialist) modernization of the society and how this was reflected in the daily life of Yugoslavs.

The design of apartments in accordance with the “new spirit” was driven by the modernist utopia of socialism; on the other hand, by studying the daily practices of the use of those apartments, one can observe and identify actual movements and tendencies that took place in society, from social stratification to the formation of class tastes and patterns of consumption, but also the advancing privatization of everyday life.

Ildiko Erdei I.Erdei is full professor at the Department of Ethnology and Anthropology at the Faculty of Philosophy in Belgrade. She received her doctorate in anthropology of consumption, and her areas of interest include research of material culture and consumption, media and new information and communication technologies, contemporary political rituals, cultural economy in socialism and post-socialism. She is the author of several books and works in domestic and foreign publications and journals.

The lecture is part of the Regional Tea party titled “Yugoslavia” which is organized together with the Academic Network for Cooperation in Southeast Europe. It takes place in the Main hall of the Institute of social sciences, can also be followed online, and will be moderated by Irena Ristić (IDN).

You can follow the lecture online via the link:


Meeting ID: 959 1502 1489
Passcode: 473414


Annual program of the "Yugoslavia - Regional Tea Party" seminar

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Јавни конкурс за попуњавање радног места – директор Института друштвених наука

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30. 11. 2022.

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