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School of Social and Political Science: Graduate school


Taylor McConnell

Taylor McConnell
Taylor McConnell
Sociology School of Social and Political Science University of Edinburgh
Edinburgh UK
Research Interests
Memory abuse, Collective memory, Memory politics, Yugoslavia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Croatia, National identity, Identity construction, Transitional justice, Political reform, State building, Othering, Violence, Reconciliation, Education, Socialisation processes

PhD Title

Memory Abuse, Violence and Identity in the former Yugoslavia: Perpetuations of divided memory in Croatia and Serbia since 1995

Curriculum Vitae - updated November 2017

Research Summary

My research focuses on the links between memory studies, politics and conflict management by suggesting how the intentional manipulation, if not abuse, of memory feeds into mechanisms that perpetuate social divisions brought about through violent means. Using the spaces formerly occupied by ethnic Serbs in Croatia as a context for this research, I hope to explain the role of memory manipulation in maintaining previously non-observed or non-existent social divisions that have emerged as a result of the Homeland War/Croatian War of Independence. This research will have a wider impact on the long-term reconciliation and state building processes in the former Yugoslavia and, potentially, in other post-conflict settings.


Mr Ross Bond (School of Social and Political Science)
Dr Andy Aydın-Aitchison (School of Law)


MSc International Development, with Distinction, School of Social and Political Science, University of Edinburgh (2015)
BA International Studies and German Studies, cum laude, College of Arts and Sciences, University of Pennsylvania (2014)
BS Econ Management, cum laude, The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania (2014)


May 2018, "'They are looking at the stars again, waiting to conquer them': Memory abuse, violence and power in Yugoslavia's demise", 'Words that Kill' conferenceThe George and Irina Schaeffer Center for the Study of Genocide, Human Rights and Conflict Prevention, American University of Paris, Paris, France
20 April 2018, "'KRVatska', 'Branitelji', 'Žrtve': (Re-)framing Croatia’s politics of memory and identity", 'War and Identity in the Balkans and the Middle East' workshop, Europe and the World Centre, University of Liverpool, Liverpool, United Kingdom
16 December 2017, "Can memory be abused? The ongoing manipulation of cultural memory in post-independence Croatia", Memory Studies Association Second Annual Conference, hosted by Faculty of Humanities, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark
10 November 2017, "Vukovar a ne Вуковар: Civic Institutions, Stigma and Power-Sharing in Croatia’s Serb-Majority Communities", 'Exclusion amid Inclusion?: How Power Sharing Engages Non-Dominant Communities' workshop, Centre for the Study of Ethnic Conflict, Queen's University Belfast, Belfast, United Kingdom
31 October 2017, Panelist, "Methodological, research and writing challenges when using historical approaches in social sciences and law", 'Bridging political, legal and historical perspectives on contemporary Europe' workshop, School of History, Classics and Archaeology, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, United Kingdom    
​1 September 2017, "Rising Waters: The increasing isolation of the Croatian Serb minority in Eastern Slavonia", 'Islands of Memory' workshop, Stari Grad (Hvar), Croatia, hosted by Centre for Southeast European Studies, Karl-Franzens-Universität Graz, Graz, Austria
29 June 2017, "Visualising Internalised Balkanism in the former Yugoslavia", 'Orientalism, Balkanism, Occidentalism: Thinking through Discourses of Othering' course, Summer School in Comparative Conflict Studies, Fakultet za medije i komunikacije, Univerzitet Singidunum, Belgrade, Serbia
26 May 2017, Panelist, "Nationalism, right wing politics and populism", 'A Nationalist Crisis?' workshop, Association for the Study of Ethnicity and Nationalism (ASEN) Edinburgh launch event, Edinburgh, United Kingdom
13 May 2017, "Memory Abuse, Violence and Identity in the former Yugoslavia: Perpetuations of Divided Memory in Croatia and Serbia since 1995", 'Divided Societies XX: Memory Wars' summer school, Inter-University Center, Dubrovnik, Croatia
20 April 2017, "Memory Abuse, Violence and Identity in the former Yugoslavia: Perpetuations of Divided Memory in Croatia and Serbia since 1995", 'New Directions' sociology conference, School of Social and Political Science, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, United Kingdom
28 January 2015, "The Bosnian Conflict and the Role of Constitutional Reform in Development", Edinburgh University International Development Society (EUID) 'ID Week', Edinburgh, United Kingdom


McConnell, T. (2017) Review of Jelena Subotić, Hijacked Justice: Dealing with the Past in the Balkans. Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 2016. Pp. xviii + 201. $22.95 (pbk). Nationalism and Ethnic Politics. 23 (4). p. 480-82. DOI: 10.1080/13537113.2017.1380466.

McConnell, T. (2017) Review of Catherine BakerThe Yugoslav Wars of the 1990sBasingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2015, 192pp. £35.00 (hbk). Nations and Nationalism. 23 (4). p. 1010-1012. DOI: 10.1111/nana.12343.

Teaching Experience

University of Edinburgh:
Semester 2, 2016/17 and 2017/18: Tutor, 'Evidence, Politics and Policy', SCPL08010
Semester 1, 2017/18: Tutor, 'International Cooperation in Europe and Beyond', PLIT08006
Semester 1, 2017/18: Tutor, 'Designing and Doing Social Research', SCIL10062