TraCeBa is a three-year project (July 2018 – July 2021) within the ERA.Net RUS Plus sub-programme of the FP7/Horizon 2020 programme.
The project explores converging and diverging tendencies in linguistic and cultural practices in the Central Balkans, in light of various kinds of boundaries that cross this area. The focus is on the Torlak region, which represented a linguistic and cultural unit until 1878, but which since the end of the 19th century has been divided by the Serbian-Bulgarian political boundary.
Specifically, the project investigates the role of boundaries – geographical, political, perceptual – on the transformation of linguistic and cultural traditions and their perception by the individual subjects. The investigation has an empirical basis, combining linguistic methods (from dialectology, areal typology, ethnolinguistics) with language technology (corpus linguistics, natural language processing, geographic information sciences). The combination of qualitative and quantitative data will allow to draw conclusions about the traditional culture of an area expressed within the framework of a local language.
In addition to collecting new authentic linguistic data in Serbia and Bulgaria and probing into the role of boundaries in linguistic and cultural transitions, the project aims at raising awareness among the speakers for the traditional values connected to Torlak and at contributing to the preservation of an endangered vernacular and culture.
The project is jointly funded by the Ministry of Education and Science of the Russian Federation, the Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Develoment of Serbia, and the Swiss National Science Foundation.