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City of Saint Louis, Missouri
Documenting Bosnian-American Experiences
A visitor contemplates an exhibit created by the precursor to the Center for Bosnian Studies about Bosnian survivors of ethnic cleansing. Image courtesy of the Center for Bosnian Studies.

A visitor contemplates an exhibit created by the precursor to the Center for Bosnian Studies about Bosnian survivors of ethnic cleansing. Image courtesy of the Center for Bosnian Studies.

St. Louis is home to a large Bosnian diaspora, many members of which arrived in the early 1990s fleeing the violence of the Bosnian War. In 2007, in order to develop an undergraduate course, Fontbonne University professor Dr. Ben Moore began interviewing members of this diaspora. Soon after, the effort expanded into a community oral history project: local high school students, many of them second or third generation Bosnians themselves, collected and digitized oral histories from members of their own community. “Many young Bosnian Americans struggle to develop a narrative that connects them to Bosnia and to the United States,” Dr. Moore said. “The project is a way to assuage those feelings of cultural homelessness.” This effort eventually became the Bosnia Memory Project.

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