For centuries rape has been considered as an inherent part of war-culture, as a natural expression of hatred, and as a way for soldiers to release sexual energy. After the recent atrocities committed by Serbian forces in Bosnia however, it became recognized as having the capacity of a weapon of war and even as a tool for genocide. Women were attacked due to their reproductive ability, aiming to impregnate them with Serb babies. This has led to recent attention to children born of war and attempts to establish their status as victims of human rights violations. Current research is challenged by lack of first-hand information and less than satisfactory analysis of the phenomenon that often results in over-dramatizing their misery or over-estimating the number of shared characteristics they have. This research project starts with a question – who are the war babies and where are they now? Guided by the assumptions of social constructivism, exploratory fieldwork has been conducted in the territory of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH). The article starts with investigating the circumstances of the babies’ conception, analyzing the predominant patterns of rape and the rationale behind them. It continues with data from the field, shedding light on the social circumstances of Bosnian war babies as well as illustrating scenarios of familial and community acceptance and rejection of these children.
"Living in the Shadows of Past Atrocities: War Babies of Bosnia,"
Wagadu: A Journal of Transnational Women's & Gender Studies: Vol. 10:
1, Article 3.
Available at: https://digitalcommons.cortland.edu/wagadu/vol10/iss1/3