Borderlands and Transborder Regions of the Croatian Language: How Far Back in History Is Enough?

  • Anita Peti-Stantić
  • Keith Langston


Croatia has traditionally been seen as a border region. It is situated at the intersection of Central Europe, Mediterranean Europe, and the Balkans, and from different perspectives it can be considered to belong to all three regions. It is also an area where the domain of the Roman Catholic Church comes into contact with Eastern Orthodoxy and Islam. The unusual crescent shape of the country today reflects the collision of these competing cultural and historical forces (Tanner 1997a: x). As Tanner states: ‘The fate of border land is always to be precarious and frequently to move, shrinking and expanding across the generations to an astonishing degree. The fate of border land is also to be buffeted in one direction or the other, to be trampled on, crossed over, colonised, defended and abandoned in turn by stronger neighbouring powers’ (ibid.). To a certain degree this also applies to the Croatian language, whose borders have been similarly fluid over time.


Language Policy Official Language Speech Community Literary Language Language Community 
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© Anita Peti-Stantić and Keith Langston 2016

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  • Anita Peti-Stantić
  • Keith Langston

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