Melissa Bokovoy

Photo: Melissa Bokovoy

Department Chair

Regents' Lecturer in Arts and Sciences

Phone: (505) 277-2451
Office: Mesa Vista 2080


B.A., History, Pomona College, 1983
M.A., East European History, Indiana University, 1987
Ph.D., Eastern Europe since 1453, Indiana University, 1991

Research Interests:

Eastern Europe since 1453, Modern Europe, World War I and II, Balkans

Research Statement:

My research focuses on how the peoples of Yugoslavia, over the span of 90 years, have lived under various regimes with fundamentally different political and socio-economic structures, and how they adapted to, changed, and resisted these regimes. My published archival research, conducted in Yugoslavia and its successor states, has examined the ways in which the twentieth century regimes in Yugoslavia, their political elites, structures, institutions, and ideologies, as well as their state and nation building processes and strategies, have interacted and impacted the society over which they ruled.  I also examine how different groups within society--peasants, women, soldiers, and ethnic groups--reacted to political processes, informed state and nation building strategies, and influenced and shaped policies, identities, and ideologies.   

 Four projects have occupied me for the last decade: 1)Research of and writing on acts of remembrance and commemoration in interwar Serbia and Yugoslavia; 2)The collaborative publication of two sets of textbooks/readers(4 volumes) for use in Western Civilization and World History courses; 3)Co-directing an international team of scholars researching and writing on “Kosovo under Autonomy, 1974-1990” for “The Scholars' Initiative: Confronting the Yugoslav Controversies;” and 4) Participation in a comparative research project on the collectivization of agriculture.


Professor Bokovoy teaches courses on eastern and western Europe in the twentieth century, as well as the western civilization surveys. Topics of particular interest in her courses are the First and Second World Wars and nationalism in the modern world. Her main area of research is the history of the south Slavs (Yugoslavia) in the twentieth century. She has primarily worked on the post World War II period, focusing on the social and political relationships between Yugoslav society and its Communist party-state. She is currently working on a project entitled: “The Politics of Commemoration: Memory and Mourning in Serbia and Croatia, 1919-1941.”

Recent/Select Publications:


Sharing the World Stage: Biography and Gender in World History 2 volsCo-authors Jane Slaughter, Patricia Risso, Ping Yao, and Patricia Romero (2009)

Sharing the Stage: Biography and Gender in Western Civilization, co-author Jane Slaughter, (2003)

Peasants and Communists: Politics and Ideology in the Yugoslav Countryside, 1941-1953 (1998)

State-Society Relations in Yugoslavia, 1945-1992 (1997)


“Framing the Hero: Photographic Narratives of War in the Interwar Kingdom of Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes.”  In Mark Cornwall and Paul Newman, eds. Sacrifice and Regeneration: The Legacy of the Great War in Eastern Europe.  London:  Palgrave McMillan.  Forthcoming.

  “Collectivization of Agriculture in Yugoslavia.”  In Arnd Bauerkämper and Constantin Iordachi, eds. The Collectivization of Agriculture in Communist Eastern Europe: Comparison and Entanglements from the 1930s to the 1980s.  Budapest:  Central European University Press, 2014

 “Chronology of Collectivization of Agriculture in Yugoslavia.”   Collectivization of Agriculture in Yugoslavia.”  In Arnd Bauerkämper and Constantin Iordachi, eds. The Collectivization of Agriculture in Communist Eastern Europe: Comparison and Entanglements from the 1930s to the 1980s.  Budapest:  Central European University Press, 2014

 Kosovo under Autonomy, 1974-1990,” Momčilo Pavlović with Melissa Bokovoy, and Nebojša Vladisavljević.  In Charles W. Ingrao and Thomas A. Emmert, eds. Confronting the Yugoslav Controversies: A Scholars' Initiative (Second Edition).  Purdue University Press, Second Edition: 2013

 “Consecrating Sites:  Šabac, Cer and the Mačva Region in Serbia’s Commemorative Culture of the First World War.”  Centropa:  A Journal of Central European Architecture and Related Art.  Volume 12, number 1(January  2012):  (Theme: Ceremonies and Festivals in Central and Eastern Europe since 1918

 “Gender and Reframing the First World War in Serbia during the 1980s and 1990s.”  In Bonnie Smith and Joanna Regulska , eds. Women and Gender in Cold War Europe. New York:  Routledge, 2012..

 “Gendering Grief:  Lamenting and Photographing the Dead in Serbia,” Aspasia:  The International Yearbook of Central, Eastern, and Southeastern European Women's and Gender History. Volume 5(2011).



Winner of the American Association for the Advancement of Slavic Studies’ Barbara Jelavich Prize for distinguished monograph on any aspect of southeast European or Habsburg studies since 1600 or on nineteenth or twentieth-century Ottoman or diplomacy, 1999

University of New Mexico Regents’ Lecturer, 2001-2004

UNM Outstanding Teacher of the Year for 2010-2011

Advisor, The University of New Mexico Board of Regents' Academic/Student Affairs and Research Committee, 2011-2014.

Member, Academic Council for East European Studies.  Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, Washington, DC.

Peter N. Kujachich Endowment in Serbian and Montenegrin Studies Annual Lecturer.  Institute of Slavic, East European, and Eurasian Studies.  The University of California, Berkely.

Board Member, Association of Women in Slavic Studies, 2012-2014.


  • Western Civilization II
  • Everyday Life Under Socialism
  • Cold War Europe through Film
  • World War I
  • World War II and Reconstruction in Europe
  • Europe and the Balkans
  • Historiography
  • Europe in 1989 and beyond
  • Graduate Seminars: Nationalism; Gender, War, and Memory; Advanced Historiography