The paper deals with women’s citizenship status in the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes/Yugoslavia in the period from its formation in 1918 until its occupation in the April War in 1941. The author highlights different regulations of citizenship status valid after the formation of the new state and gender as a very important aspect of these regulations. Many legal institutions of acquisition and loss of citizenship were determined significantly by gender. Men’s dominant position can be seen in the rules on automatic naturalization by marriage and in those on regular naturalization, which protected the unity of a family at the expense of women’s right to retain her previous citizenship. Additionally, the author elaborates men’s dominant position as applicants in the process of naturalization; on the other hand, he also highlights some cases in which women were applicants. The author questions the impact of peace treaties reached after World War I on women’s citizenship status. He points out the normative aspects of peace treaties and their application in legal practice. Moreover, the author debates the rules and the application of the 1928 Citizenship Act through gender perspective.
Ivan Kosnica works at the Faculty of Law at the University of Zagreb, currently as Assistant Professor at the Chair for the History of Croatian Law and State. His main research interest is concentrated on the history of citizenship during the 19th and 20th century. His doctoral thesis addressed citizenship in Croatia-Slavonia from 1848 to 1918. Currently, he is dealing with the issue of citizenship in the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes/Yugoslavia.