Film-making and Police-minority Relations: Slovenian Police and Roma in Shanghai Gypsy

  • John Jay College of Criminal Justice
     United States
  • St. Francis College
     United States
  • Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces (DCAF) Ljubljana Gospodinjska ulica 8 1000 Ljubljana Slovenia-EU
     Slovenia
  • John Jay College of Criminal Justice
     United States

Abstract

After experiencing riots involving police and a Roma village, a community in north-eastern Slovenia hosted the million-dollar production of a major motion picture, Shanghai Gypsy (2012), which focuses on Roma and criminal justice themes. Several current Slovenian police officers played the role of police while local Roma were ‘extras’ as Roma villagers. This research explored the meaning of cooperating on production of the film for participants from two groups formerly in conflict. The current study consisted of semi-structured interviews conducted approximately 18 months after the film was produced with a sample of participants. We hypothesized that the film participants were able to interact with each other in ways that opened up new modes of communication, improved interpersonal relationships, and aided mutual understanding. Participants indicated that the film was regarded as a powerful means of generating Roma cultural awareness. Both police and Roma tended to downplay the intensity of the original conflict, yet often offered stories and anecdotes that seemed to indicate that relations between the groups had indeed improved as a result of their participation in the film.

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Except where otherwise noted, content in this journal is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
Published: 2015-12-01
Pages:22 to 39
Section:Articles
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How to Cite
Strobl, S., Phillips, N., Banutai, E., & Reynolds, D. (2015). Film-making and Police-minority Relations: Slovenian Police and Roma in Shanghai Gypsy. International Journal for Crime, Justice and Social Democracy, 4(4), 22-39. https://doi.org/10.5204/ijcjsd.v4i4.187

Author Biographies

John Jay College of Criminal Justice
 United States
I am an Associate Professor in the Law, Police Science & Criminal Justice Administration Department at John Jay College of Criminal Justice.
St. Francis College
 United States
I am an Associate Professor in the Criminology& Sociology Department at St. Francis College.
Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces (DCAF) Ljubljana Gospodinjska ulica 8 1000 Ljubljana Slovenia-EU
 Slovenia
DCAF Ljubljana Project Manager