The Serbs History, Myth and the Destruction of Yugoslavia Tim Judah

Publication date:
24 Nov 2009
368 pages: 198 x 129 x 33mm
40 black-&-white illustrations

"The Serbs" was published in hardcover in 1997, and paperbacked in 1998. It was reissued as a NB paperback in 2000, and reprinted regularly since then. There is a lot to catch-up on in this second edition. It covers the Kosovo War, and the overthrow of Milosevic, with close-up accounts of his trial at the Hague, and subsequent death. It looks at the assassination of Serbian Prime Minister Zoran Djindic in 2003, and its consequences. It deals with Montenegro's plebiscite in favour of independence in May 2006, and subsequent dissolution of the Union of Serbia and Montenegro, and re-emergence of Serbia as an independent state, under its own name, later that year. It also covers the unilateral proclamation of independence by Kosovo in February 2008, its recognition by most western countries and its opposition by Russia, China and Spain. And it provides an inside account of the identification and arrest of Radovan Karadzic in July 2008 and indictment on charges of genocide at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, which is ongoing. Ratko Mladic, the 'butcher of Serbia' of course remains in hiding.

Tim Judah has covered developments in Serbia and Kosovo regularly over the past ten years, writing for a range of international papers. He returned to Belgrade for a month late in 2008 to prepare the revisions to The Serbs. His vivid, first-hand account confirms his book as the leading account of events in the Balkans in any language, and a staple for the trade and college markets.

"Judah offers a highly readable history of the Serbs from medieval times to the present, with judicious comments on the rise of the Kosovo Liberation Army and Nato’s bombing campaign. It is one of the best attempts to explain a situation which has baffled the West throughout history."—The Glasgow Herald

"Readable and stimulating . . . Judah’s book is a polemical attempt to counter the ‘demonisation’ of the Serbs. But it is far from being a whitewash: with very few exceptions, he successfully walks the tightrope between ‘balance’ and relativisation." —Brendan Simms, The Times Higher Education

"Tim Judah’s book is an ambitious and valiant attempt to bring together the real history of the Serbs and the myths and theories in which that history was handed down."—Melanie McDonagh, Evening Standard

"A stunning new history."—Robert Fisk, Irish Times

"A very good book... Judah cleverly interprets Serbia’s sad present in the light of its past."—The Sunday Times

"It remains a definitive, and relevant, text for students, lay readers and even scholars. As an introductory work to the background and causes of the disintegration of the Yugoslav state and the subsequent events it has few rivals."—Kenneth Morrison, Slavonic & East European Review