Today, in Serbia, the village and rural areas culture, except in rare cases, does not have a significant or even visible role in the program representation or in the creation of urban or regional cultural policies. Neglected for decades, mainly left as an intuitive drive for the maintenance of tradition and a partial adoption of modern practices, the Serbian village is a depiction of the present discontinuity of (non) concern for the strategic organization of a country’s culture. Administratively still in the inherited system from the time of the democratization of culture, it has never recovered from the consequences of a badly derived model of cultural diffusionism based on the essential lack of connection with the core urban centers and/or other similar communities. The analysis offers an insight into the situation in the villages and settlements in Pančevo, Leskovac, Novi Sad and Kraljevo, towns that have been systematized to have rural cultural centers as cultural institutions founded by their local governments. Identified as the central cumulating sites of local heritage, the new cultural production and population gatherings, cultural halls, even in a devastating state of infrastructure and value, but as bearers of strong symbolic capital, establish new forms of socio-cultural centers that in the future should be nurtured and developed with the purpose of functional decentralization.
This paper presents the findings of a sociological research of coffee shops in the village of Stapar (Northwestern Serbia, near the City of Sombor). The case study method was used, and the results showed that a rural coffee-shop/tavern has been an important rural institution, since it performs several functions for a rural society. The findings also show that in rural coffee-shops/taverns it is possible to find a special mix of modernity and tradition.