Velickovic V (2012) Belated alliances? Tracing the intersections between postcolonialism and postcommunism. Journal of Postcolonial Writing, vol. 48, no. 2, pp. 164–175
Velickovic’s research focuses on the relationship between postcolonialism, postcommunism and representations of post-1989 and post-2004 eastern Europeans in British literature, film and culture. This article, in particular, examines the intersections between postcommunism and postcolonialism and whether new comparative frameworks between postcolonialism and postcommunism are emerging in the light of recent migration from Eastern Europe to the west. By looking at the emergence of postcolonial frameworks for interrogating the construction of Eastern Europe spanning the Enlightenment, the Cold War and the postcommunist period, Velickovic argues that an engagement with the non-aligned legacy of communist foreign diplomacy might offer an alternative wealth of interpretative resources and productive '(non-)alliances' between postcolonialism and postcommunism.
Through a close examination of British media responses to recent Eastern European migration, Velikovic identifies a number of intersections as well as discontents between postcolonialism and postcommunism. Going on to interrogate the western construction of the region as semi-civilized, this article undertakes an analysis of the ways in which postcolonial concepts and interpretive practices have been used by scholars of Eastern Europe since the mid-1990s to redefine the concept of Eastern Europe, Europe and the European Union.
This essay develops out of a conference paper given at the Institute of English Studies (Eastern European Workers in the Western Metropolis, 2011) and was commissioned for a special issue of The Journal of Postcolonial Writing, which reflects on colonialism, communism and east-central Europe. The special issue seeks to redress the relative neglect of the postcommunist problematic in postcolonial studies and enhance its visibility within the discipline.