Dr. Đuro Bodrožić



Institute for Political Studies



Faculty of Law, Belgrade University



Faculty of Law, Belgrade University



Faculty of Law, Belgrade University



Đuro Bodrožić is a Senior Research Associate at the Institute for Political Studies and a member of the editorial board of the scientific journal "Serbian Political Thought".

He was born on March 30, 1966 in Koljani, Dalmatia. He attended primary school in Vrlica. He graduated from the law and clerical high school in Stara Pazova.

He graduated from the Faculty of Law of the University of Belgrade in 1993. At the same faculty, he enrolled in postgraduate studies - majoring in theoretical legal sciences. At the Faculty of Law of the University of Belgrade, in front of the commission, which included: prof. Dr. Kosta Čavoški (full professor of the Faculty of Law, University of Belgrade, corresponding member of SANU - mentor), Vojislav Stanovčić, full professor of the Faculty of Political Sciences, University of Belgrade, corresponding member of SANU), as well as prof. Dr. Budimir Košutić (full professor at the Faculty of Law, University of Belgrade), in 2007 he defended his master's thesis (with honors), under the title: "The Ethos of the National State. The origin and essence of the mutual relationship between the nation and the state", and thus obtained the academic title of Master of Legal Sciences.

At the Faculty of Law of the University of Belgrade, in front of a committee composed of: prof. Dr. Kosta Čavoški (full professor of the Faculty of Law, University of Belgrade, corresponding member of SANU), prof. Dr. Milovan Mitrović (full professor at the Faculty of Law, University of Belgrade, mentor), prof. Saša Bovan, Ph.D. (associate professor at the Faculty of Law in Belgrade), in 2012 defended (with honors) his doctoral dissertation entitled: "Sociological-legal foundations of Serbian identity", there by earning the title of Doctor of Legal-Sociological Sciences.

In addition to a large number of articles and reports, he published monographs: "National State", published by the Serbian Literary Cooperative and Parthenon, in 2008, "Serbian Identity", published by the Serbian Literary Cooperative, first edition in 2015, and second updated edition in 2018 .


There is no doubt that, when it comes to the spiritual rooting of Serbs, and therefore the estabilishment of a national identity, the key place belongs to Saint Sava. He is the main constant, the spiritual vertical, the central figure in the histiry of the Serbian Orthodox Church and the Serbian people. Of all church dignitaries and saints, the cult of Saint Sava always occupied a central place. He is the creator of the Serbian Orthodox Church and the first Serbian archbishop. His role in the creation of the Serbian church, state and nation made him a fundamental figure in Serbian nationa history.

Sain Sava began his historic mission by going to Mount Athos. He knew how important it was that his father Stefan Nemanja, the creatoir of the Serbian state from which the Serbs count their historical time, would join him there. And so it was, Nemanja stepped down from power, became a monk and followed in his son's aootsteps to Mount Athos. Together they built the Serbian monastery on Mount Athos – Hilandar, which would become a source of Serbian literacy, education and culture. Sava compiled a biography of his father, a work that is considered the beginning of Serbian literature. And with which the creation of Nemanja's cult, but also the cult of his family – the holy lineage of Nemanjić.

Even before Nemanja, Serbs represented a political factor, sreated state unions that had their own cultural basis, legendary and historical traditions, but the real historical life of the Serbian people began with Stefan Nemanja.

Sain Sava knew how important the close relationship between the church ant the state is for the future of the Serbian people, he was convinced that the mission of the church requires the support of the state and that the state, if it wants to be strong and stable, needs the support of the church. But it is also tempting to determinate the scope of work for each of them, because he also knew how dangerous it is if they start falling into each other's jurisdiction. The strenght and solidity of Sava's church was showen even after the collapse of the Serbian state, when it lived in foreign countries, because it became the property of the Serbian people with whom it shared its destiny – the church was the people, the people were the curch.

These are the reasons for which it can rightly be said that, in addition to being the founder of the Serbian Church, which is the orginator of Serbian culture. Sain Sava is also the founder of the Serbian nation.



In order to know the nature of an ideal, it is necessary to know its origin and historical development – intellectual and social. Nationality is a cultural phenomenon. It is not tied to ideologies but to the cultural systems within which it arose and against which it arose. And these are, first of all, Roman Catholic universalism and dynastic kingdom.

The initial meaning of the term nation is not as we understand it in our time. Today's meaning of this term is associated with the French Revolution: A people under one government that knows itself in its own state. The greatest change brought about by the Napoleonic Wars in the domain of warfare was not military but political. A subject of the old regime became a citizen. He would have the obligation to serve his military service and fight if the nation asked for it. It was a change of the first order not only of military structures, it was about the birth of a nation and a national state.

A nation is a people that knows itself in its state, and the state does not bow down. And that is why it could be said that a nation is a people who is ready to die and kill for the idea of their homeland. And a nation-state is a state that entrusts its destiny to the hands of a conscripted army, fearing neither rebellion nor desertion.



Nationalism is based on the principle of the compatibility of political and national unity. The national principle is particularly violated if members of the same nation are divided into several states where they represent the majority in each of them, but none of them can be considered a national state. A nation that has several states does not have its own nation-state. In many cases, it was seen that the relations between such countries are at least fraternal even though one and the same people live in them. Nationalism requires the matching of ethnic and state borders so that state borders do not cross ethnic borders and separate members of the same nation. Nationalism is laid in the foundations of the modern world, without this teaching it is impossible to understand the history of our world, not only political but also cultural trends in general. Since the Enlightenment and the French Revolution destroyed dynastic legitimacy, the nation became a source of political legitimacy. This was the reason for many to direct research attention to the idea of the nation and the teaching of nationalism to the historical circumstances in which this teaching developed and became relevant to the political implications it produced, but also to the intellectual history of nationalism – philosophical foundations and programmatic settings. This work is a contribution to the understanding of the intellectual history of nationalism. Special attention is drawn to Kant’s philosophy, in which nationalism found its foothold. From the ideal of autonomy, which in Kant is an ethical imperative for the individual, the philosophy of national self-determination and the collective struggle for the realization of an authentic national will in one’s own country emerges when it is applied to groups by Fichte, Schlegel and other Romantics. Giuseppe Mazzini, the apostle of Italian unity, is a person who embodies the ideals of nationalism and patriotism of the nineteenth century. He dedicated his life to the unification of Italy, was sentenced to death twice, and spent his best years in exile. Nationality was an idea in which he saw salvation as a means for the overall transformation of Europe. The national revolution became his mission, he saw all the messianism in the organization of the youth who should carry out the work of liberation. The enormous energy he invested in the realization of the national idea made Mazzini a symbol of the principle of nationality. From Mazzini’s teaching, it is clear that nationalism is not only a political program but a complete view of the world – a worldview.



In this paper, we are talking about the historical roots of the nation state. In order to understand the meaning of an ideal, it is necessary to know its history, which also applies to the national ideal. By nation we mean people who know rhemselves in their country. The idea of the state is what transforms a people, understood as a cultural concept, into a politically active force that we know as a nation. In order for a nation to be considered free, not only civil liberties in the state embodied in equality before gоod laws are sufficient, but also freedom, embodied un equality with other states, which is in its independence. National independence is needed by peoples in order to ensure that foreigners do not take advantage of them economically, plunder and exploit them, and do not subjugate them spiritually. Both economic and spiritual development imply freedom. There is no denying that the cultural development of a country and a people is deeply and inseparably linked with their national freedom. The state does not create a nation by infusing a single consciousness and wil into a random multitude that would be acquired within the state borders, but it largely ensures the contrtion of factors that form the national will by ensuring the concentration of those factors. There are numerous examples of peoples that survived of their state, but there are no ehamples of the formation of a people being completed without a state structure. We cite reasons that indicate that the national state is the best form of political organization because it has proven to be the most suitable political form for preserving individual and collective freedom.



Economic histоry, created in recent times, has provided a completetely different angle of view of medieval history, which shows that the Middle Ages is not, as it is often called, a dark interlude between magnificent antiquity and brilliant Renaissance, but one of the most inventive societies in history; at least when it comes to technology. From the angle of economic history, we look at the Serbian Middle Ages – the economic base and the social structure. When we talk about the Serbian Middle Ages, the thought goes to the state of the Nemanjic dynasty. For the Serbian people, the state of Nemanjic remained a symbol of statehood and military power, but also the embodiment of Serbian medieval culture. Serbian medievel culture developed within the Byzantine culture, the highest culture of the Middle Ages. The Byzantine cultural pattern is visible in the organization of the state, social structure, political ideology, literature and it's legal monuments. The main shortcoming of the medieval Serbian state is related to the lack of a domestic trade layer that could match foreign traders. In addition to being financially more powerful, foreign traders also had greater privileges than domestic traders. The equating of domestic with foreign traders followed only in the time of Tsar Dusan. In that way, the trade profit did not stay in the country, but went to the home places from where the merchants came, most often to Dubrovnik and Venice. This is the main reason why there has been no development of cities and the emergence of urban population, and there are no structural economic shifts based on production and technological innovations. That was the great weakness of the medieval Serbian state, which greatly reduced it's resistance to the Turkish invasion.



At the start of the work we point out to the appearance of the science historiography, we quote the thinkers who made a decisive contribution about historical theme and it’s processed by aplication of scientific methology. When it comes to the national identity, history theme is unavoidable. Without a feeling for historical reality, secret of nation is inaccessible. Because the nation isn’t some kind of abstract-sociological category which could be reduces to a series of purely sociological elements, such as: language, race, teritory, statehood, although those characteristics are to a lesser ot greater extent, the essentials for determining the national being. But, nation is primarily a consciousness of common destiny, which untes the members of the group. A nation becomes aware of itself only when it becomes aware of it’s history. By becoming familiar with it’s history, selfawareness, the people get their identity - become self-made. Undoubtedly, the power of remembrance is what makes people people. Memories are a form from which the image of identity, individuals and people are formed. The discussion about identity is a talk about collective memory and the mediums that enable it to be held. Ethno-history is a source of cultural power. Communities that can boast about it’s history have competitive advantage because of the feeling of moral superiority over those whose history is poor or suspicious. Others have nothing left but to engage in cultural wars, for the purpose of appropriating the inheritance. The Balkan territory is known for such wars, but it’s not the only place where we encounter such a phenomenon. The key factors of identity, and historical memory, relate to beliefs that do not exist without mythology. The destruction of mythical creatures represents the impact on the core of what makes a worldview of one nation, it’s image of the world. This inevitably leads to the erosion of ethnic ties and the destruction of the people. One nation lives with it’s legends as long as with it’s real history. The time of deep political and social shocks always brings rearrangement of the past, especially at the time when the national culture was subjected to the aggression of the globalist concept. Today the struggle for identity, to a large extent, is reduced to the battle for it’s history.



The military function of the state is a basic state obligation. Military-related issues are the sole responsibility of the state. A monopoly on physical force is a specific feature of the state. The military is the most important instrument of state policy. In order to respond to its function, it must be strictly hierarchized and subordinated. Loyalty is the first virtue of a soldier. The military profession has its own history. Modern army and modern warfare are inseparably linked to the industrial revolution in England and the French civil revolution. The French Revolution was an event that changed the whole society the way warfare. The new type of army created in the French Revolution and the Napoleonic Wars have changed the nature of the war. The old tradition of dynastic wars with a limited number of participants and limited goals has become a past. We point to the importance of Prussia in the revolutionary military profession, especially the role of the Prusian General Staff. The success of German weapons was the reason for others to show interest in German principles and models of military organization. In the end, we pointed out the relation of military ethics to war and politics.