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Shalini Randeria, Anna Wójcik

Mobilizing law for solidarity

An interview with Shalini Randeria

Legal transnationalization takes place at different paces, setting human rights against trade and property protections, argues social anthropologist Shalini Randeria. The instrumentalization of solidarity by nascent ethno-nationalism must be resisted at the political not the legal level. [ more ]

Ira Katznelson, Agnieszka Rosner

Solidarity after Machiavelli

Camille Leprince, Lynn SK

Portraits of three women...

Ilaria Morani

Street art, power and patronage

Eurozine Review

Eurozine Review

The destruction of society

'Osteuropa' rages at the destruction of Russian society; 'Merkur' delves into the history of Eurasianism; 'Vikerkaar' is sanguine about the decline of universalism; 'New Eastern Europe' has divided opinions about borders; 'Ord&Bild' finds humanism at sea; 'Il Mulino' debates the difficulties of democracy in Italy and the West; 'Blätter' seeks responses to the whitelash; 'Mittelweg 36' historicizes pop and protest; 'Critique & Humanism' looks at Bulgarian youth cultures; 'Res Publica Nowa' considers labour; and 'Varlik' examines the origins of literary modernism in Turkey.

Eurozine Review

The ordinary state of emergency

Eurozine Review

The Lilliput syndrome

Eurozine Review

The violent closet?

Eurozine Review

Peak democracy?

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Irina Borogan, Andrei Soldatov

Don't blame technology

Russian hackers were able to interfere in the US election because of public receptivity to anti-establishment messages. Journalists Andrei Soldatov and Irina Borogan argue that distrust in traditional media provides fertile ground for Russian disinformation. [more]


Gábor Halmai

The decline of liberal democracy in Europe's midst

Fidesz's constitutional counter-revolution has reversed the process of democratization begun in Hungary in 1989. Seeking reasons for Hungary's 'backsliding', Gábor Halmai argues that democratic culture is more crucial than formal legality to guaranteeing rule of law. Hungary challenges the EU's ability to prevent illiberal democracies emerging in its midst. [more]


Claus Leggewie, Patrizia Nanz

The future council

New forms of democratic participation

Decisions on large-scale infrastructure projects and sustainable energy development must draw on dialogue-based processes. "Future councils" can provide a basis for political identity and clarify the implications that large infrastructure projects have at a local level. [German version added] [more]


Ivan Krastev

Utopian dreams beyond the border

The refugee crisis has re-opened the gap between East and West. What Europe is witnessing today is not what Brussels describes as a lack of solidarity, but a clash of solidarities: national, ethnic and religious solidarity, writes Ivan Krastev. [Russian version added] [more]


Volodymyr Yermolenko

Seven consequences of the Dutch referendum

A majority of almost two-thirds opposed the Association Agreement between the European Union and Ukraine in a referendum in the Netherlands on 6 April. As the public debate surrounding the referendum gained pace, the Ukrainian independent TV channel Hromadske became an important forum for associated discussion. Now that the results are in, Hromadske journalist Volodymyr Yermolenko assesses the implications for EU-Ukraine relations, and European politics in general. [more]


Tatiana Zhurzhenko

Hybrid reconciliation

It seems that, subsequent to the "hybrid war" between Ukraine and Russia, reconciliation efforts have ensued – but only at first glance. In fact, what we witness is a continuation of war by other means, writes Tatiana Zhurzhenko. Mapping the growing alienation between the two nations, she asks: under what conditions is dialogue possible? [more]


Yustyna Kravchuk

Self-reflection through the visual

Notes on some Maidan documentaries

Today, the Maidan revolution lives on in a wealth of documentary films about the events of 2013-14 in Ukraine. Yustyna Kravchuk compares and contrasts the approaches of the films' creators, and the implications of these for the articulation of collective political desires. [more]


Zaven Babloyan

The Dutch referendum: A view from Ukraine

Ahead of the immanent referendum in the Netherlands on the Ukraine-European Union Association Agreement, publisher and translator Zaven Babloyan reflects on political misunderstandings, a lack of solidarity and literature as the last hope. [more]


Iryna Solonenko

Reforms in Ukraine

Between old legacies and a new social contract

With president Petro Poroshenko and prime minister Arseniy Yatseniuk having lost their image as radical reformers of late, Iryna Solonenko says it is up to Ukraine's new reform-minded actors in both government and civil society to secure a new social contract. However, the challenges they face are formidable, as the legacies of previous regimes persist and resistance to change among the old guard remains fierce. [more]


Kateryna Botanova

Back to the future in Ukraine

Cultural policies two years after Maidan

The Maidan protests have given Ukraine a chance to stop and look at its future, and plan it the way she wanted to, writes Kateryna Botanova. Now it's becoming apparent how to make the revolutionary shift from continual fighting, distrust and questioning of legitimacy to mutual support, collaboration and growth. [more]


Anton Shekhovtsov, Slawomir Sierakowski

Patterns of illiberalism in central Europe

A conversation with Anton Shekhovtsov

It was not long ago that the countries of eastern and central Europe served as a model of successful democratic transition for Ukraine. But today, Poland's turn to the right has refocused attention on the roots of the region's illiberal democracies. Anton Shekhovtsov considers the implications of these developments for Europe as a whole. [Russian version added] [more]


Konstantin Skorkin

Post-Soviet science fiction and the war in Ukraine

Today's mass-produced Russian science fiction is brimming with motifs of imperial revenge and a cult of military aggression. Moreover, writes Konstantin Skorkin, the imperial visions of science fiction authors have turned into a guide to action. [more]


Mikhail Dubinyansky

From Euromaidan to euroscepticism

Ukraine's Revolution of Dignity was triggered by the government's decision to postpone signing the long-awaited Association Agreement with the European Union. Protesters on Kyiv's streets chanted "Ukraine is Europe!", and waved EU and Ukrainian flags side-by-side. Two years after the victory of the Maidan protests, what is left of this pro-European idealism? [more]


Tatiana Zhurzhenko

Ukraine in European dialogue

The focal point "Ukraine in European dialogue" aims to tackle Ukraine fatigue in the West and to offer deeper insight into post-revolutionary Ukrainian society, with its unique mix of hope, enthusiasm, social creativity, collective trauma of war, radicalism and disillusionment. [more]


Katherine Younger

A church caught between?

When Pope Francis and Patriarch Kirill met in Havana, for one part of the Catholic Church the past seemed to be repeating itself, writes Katherine Younger. In the nineteenth century, the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church found itself in the middle of both diplomatic negotiations and ideological clashes between the Vatican and Russia – and it is again today. [more]


Ekaterina Sergatskova

From peninsula to island

Crimea two years after annexation

Though Russia's annexation of Crimea in March 2014 moved at breakneck pace, it followed a long anti-Ukrainian propaganda campaign. Ekaterina Sergatskova, a former Russian journalist who lived in Crimea for some years before moving to Kyiv, describes the growing mutual alienation between the inhabitants of the peninsula and mainland Ukraine. [more]


Maria Teteriuk

A litmus test for post-Maidan democracy

Anti-discrimination legislation

The political discourse on LGBT rights has shifted in Ukraine after the Maidan and as a result of the conflict with Russia, which aggressively promotes "traditional values". However, writes Maria Teteriuk, the efficacy of recent legal reform concerning LGBT rights, introduced as part of the visa-free deal with the EU, remains to be seen. [Swedish version added] [more]


Maria Stepanova

The haunted house

Contemporary Russia between past and past

Twenty-five years after the USSR's collapse, writes Maria Stepanova, history has turned into a kind of minefield, a realm of constant, traumatic revision. As a result, Russia is living in a schizoid present where the urgent need for a new language is far from being met. [more]


Alexander Mikhailovsky

The pressure valve

Russian nationalism in late Soviet society

In the 1970s and early 1980s, a movement of Russian nationalists attempted to reshape the USSR in a Russian-patriotic spirit. Alexander Mikhailovsky considers the reception of this movement among intellectual circles at the time and whether its legacy still plays a role in official Russian politics today. [more]


Sergii Leshchenko

The Firtash octopus

Agents of influence in the West

Dirty money from the East has become a resource for dozens of European structures and politicians. Sergii Leshchenko reports on some of those that are only too happy to open their doors to a Ukrainian oligarch willing to invest millions in cleaning up his image. [more]


Shalini Randeria

Disempowerment and judicialization

The depoliticization of democracy?

Paradoxically, the global spread of democracy has proceeded hand-in-hand with the hollowing out of its substance, argues Shalini Randeria. The challenges that this poses to institutions, states and transnational civic society alike are unprecedented but by no means insurmountable. [more]


Timothy Snyder

Commemorative causality

Commemorative causality, the confusion between present resonance and past power, denies history its proper subject, writes Timothy Snyder. What is easiest to represent becomes what it is easiest to argue and, in lieu of serious explanations, only emotional reflexes remain. [German version added] [more]


Olivier Roy

The disconnect between religion and culture

It is no longer possible to contrast a "secular" West with a "religious" East, writes Olivier Roy. Secularization and the de-culturation of religion are taking place in both East and West. The difference is the political forms that the de-culturated religions take. [more]


Ella Paneyakh


Or, the deliberate devaluation of social capital

Every authoritarian state must choose democratization or collapse at some point. But Ella Paneyakh says that the Russian system is seeking a third way. It has in its sights nothing less than the social fabric: human interrelations, mutual support mechanisms and the capacity for joint action. [more]


Andreas Umland

Towards a Greater Asia?

The prospects of a Sino-Russian entente

Would it be pure fantasy to suppose that the forging of closer ties between Moscow and Beijing really offers Russia an alternative to growing international isolation? No, says Andreas Umland. There is however plenty of ground for scepticism about the venture's viability. [more]


Stanislav Zakharkin

What's in store for the Siberian movement?

Siberian neo-regionalism has recently gained momentum, writes Stanislav Zakharkin; a development fuelled not least by concern about the uneven distribution of revenues from the region's oil and mineral resources. But can this diverse grassroots movement effect real change? [more]


Slavenka Drakulic

How women survived post-communism (and didn't laugh)

The situation for women in societies caught up in the post-'89 transition is complicated, notes Slavenka Drakulic. Rights that were, at least formally, established during the communist regime are now imperilled. And the financial crisis hit women particularly hard. [Belarusian version added] [more]


Dmitry Uzlaner

Fifty shades of Russian fetishism

Anyone trespassing on any kind of sacred territory in Russia today must reckon with "millions of believers" taking offence and earnest calls to protect "traditional values". This, writes Dmitry Uzlaner, is the stuff of political fetishism. And the stronger the fetish, the weaker the responsible citizen. [more]


Ilija Trojanow

Security versus freedom: A misleading trade-off

In the wake of the technological revolution that is the Internet, writes Ilija Trojanow, principles of self-organization and collaboration might be expected to replace established hierarchies and concentrations of power. Instead, the technologies of surveillance now available to states have never been more intrusive. [Lithuanian version added] [more]


Nikolay Mitrokhin

Charlie Hebdo's Russian afterlife

Russian responses to the Charlie Hebdo attack in Paris reveal the contradictions of political and social trends in today's Russia, writes Nikolay Mitrokhin; with the most dramatic response being the unprecedented political killing of leading opposition politician Boris Nemtsov. [Russian version added] [more]


Mikhail Rozhanskiy

The empire's Siberian knots

Siberia survives as a single name for a territory covering two-thirds of Russia. Yet it comprises well over a dozen regions, republics and territories. Look at how the borders of Siberia were defined, writes Mikhail Rozhanskiy, and you grasp the imperial nature of Russia's social space. [Russian version added] [more]


Dietmar Müller, Stefan Troebst

History, remembrance and the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact

Seventy years after the end of World War II, Dietmar Müller and Stefan Troebst consider the pact that started it. The Molotov-Ribbentrop pact has remained the subject of fierce controversy, right up until Russia's annexation of Crimea and destabilization of eastern Ukraine. [more]


Timothy Snyder

When Stalin was Hitler's ally

As Russia revives the tradition of wars of aggression on European territory, Vladimir Putin has chosen to rehabilitate the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact as good foreign policy. But why violate now what was for so long a Soviet taboo? Timothy Snyder explains. [Russian version added] [more]


Tatiana Zhurzhenko

Russia's never-ending war against "fascism"

Memory politics in the Russian-Ukrainian conflict

Seventy years after the end of World War II, writes Tatiana Zhurzhenko, the fight for hegemony in Europe continues -- disguised as a conflict of historical master narratives. The beginning of the current round of memory wars in the post-Soviet space can be dated back to 2005, when the sixtieth anniversary of the victory over Nazi Germany turned into a loyalty test for the politicians of neighbouring countries. [more]


Kirill Rogov

Resource nationalism

Russia's anti-westernism and territorial revanchism have intensified. A case of deferred post-imperial syndrome linked to the collapse of the USSR? Maybe, says Kirill Rogov. But this alone hardly explains why associated policies are now apparently met with such widespread domestic popularity. [more]


Konstantin Skorkin

Luhansk: The case of a failed cultural revolution

In 2013, the seemingly hopeless task of bringing art to the provinces finally started to bear fruit in Luhansk, eastern Ukraine. One year on, the activists, artists, journalists and writers responsible are exiles in their own country, writes Konstantin Skorkin. [more]


Timothy Snyder

Europe and Ukraine: Past and future

The history of Ukraine has revealed the turning points in the history of Europe. On 25 May both Ukrainians and EU citizens can decide which way things will turn this time. Ukraine has no future without Europe, but Europe also has no future without Ukraine. [more]


Tanya Richardson

Odessa's two big differences (and a few small ones)

Life after the Maidan and 2 May

On 2 May, clashes between anti-Maidan and Euromaidan activists claimed 48 lives in Odessa. The city is still in shock. Tanya Richardson reports on how Russian intervention in Crimea has made such questions as "Who am I?" and, "In which state will I be secure?" more pressing than ever. [more]


Sergii Leshchenko

Ukraine's puppet masters

A typology of oligarchs

It'll be a long haul, but it can be done. Having systematically charted the careers of the people who drove Ukraine to the brink of destruction, Sergii Leshchenko grapples with the question of how to shake Ukraine free of the oligarchs' grip. [more]


Anton Shekhovtsov

From electoral success to revolutionary failure

The Ukrainian Svoboda party

The radical rightwing party Svoboda rose to prominence in Ukraine's 2012 parliamentary elections as an alternative to the political establishment, writes Anton Shekhovtsov: but its role in Euromaidan may well amount to Svoboda's swan song. [more]


Lev Gudkov

The technology of negative mobilization

Russian public opinion and Vladimir Putin's "Ukrainian policy"

How can it be that, in contrast to the international community, virtually no one in Russia believed that Russian-backed separatists shot down the Malaysian Airlines plane in July? Beyond press censorship, Lev Gudkov looks to Russians themselves, who increasingly hear only what they want to. [more]


Tatiana Zhurzhenko

From borderlands to bloodlands

With Russia's annexation of Crimea and the military conflict in eastern Ukraine, the era of post-Soviet tolerance of blurred identities and multiple loyalties has ended. Borderlands, writes Tatiana Zhurzhenko, have once again turned into bloodlands. [more]


Nikolay Koposov

Back to Yalta?

Stephen Cohen and the Ukrainian crisis

International instability seems to increase with every passing day of the Ukrainian crisis, ushering in a new era of international relations. Slamming Russian studies scholar Stephen Cohen for misrepresenting the crisis, Nikolay Koposov urges the West to devise a completely new way of dealing with Russia. [more]


Volodymyr Yermolenko

The silence of the lambs

Why the West should stop being angelic towards Putin

For Vladimir Putin, the West's tolerance is weakness and dialogue is failure to impose force. Because KGB-styled Russia believes that either you devour, or you are devoured. Europe's "silence of the lambs", writes Volodymyr Yermolenko, is not a proper response to Russia's war. [more]


Maxim Trudolyubov

The hand that feeds

The first victims of sanctions and counter-sanctions

As Russia becomes more and more isolated, the Russian government will need to provide for all those who support it. Maxim Trudolyubov explains why those who can provide for themselves will be the first victims of western sanctions and Russian countermeasures. [more]


Maria Lipman

Commander of a fortress under siege

What Putin's strategy means for Russia

Sanctions on Russia may tip economic stagnation into recession and widen the country's gap with western nations still further. This time Putin seems to be plying an isolationist course without regard for the consequences, writes Maria Lipman. [more]


Ivan Krastev

The global politics of protest

The new wave of revolutionary politics, from the Arab Spring to the Turkish Summer, is an insurgence against representative democracy that offer no alternatives. But is protest really a better instrument than elections for keeping elites accountable? [more]


Tatiana Zhurzhenko

The autumn of nations 1989 and the Ukrainian winter 2013-14

Putinism is not communism, yet it seems that many in the West are willing to understand and even accept Moscow's actions. So how firm will the West's stance be in protecting the foundations of European security subverted by Putin's actions in Ukraine? [more]


Vladislav Inozemtsev

How to win Cold War II

The West must start to put its long-term interests above the instant gratification of London bankers, German gas traders and real estate dealers all over Europe, who are yearning for Russian money. Then the new Cold War can be won, writes Vladislav Inozemtsev. [more]


Vitaly Portnikov

The Jews and the Maidan

The Maidan has provided a historic chance to build a modern political nation where Jews can be Ukrainians, writes Ukrainian editor and journalist Vitaliy Portnikov. The misleading stereotype that Ukrainian nationalism is by nature anti-Semitic can finally be laid to rest. [more]


Olga Sedakova

Russian society in the light of the Maidan

Poet and essayist Olga Sedakova takes her fellow Russian writers and intellectuals to task for responding with silence to the light emanating from the Maidan: a light of hope, of solidarity and of rehabilitated humanity. A light that Russia would do well to see itself in. [more]


Nadia Urbinati

Between hegemony and mistrust

Representative democracy in the Internet era

Iceland's crowd-sourced constitution and the impact of Beppe Grillo's blog on Italian politics reveal how "Internet democracy" has opened a new phase of democratic innovation. The relationship between citizens and politicians may never be the same again. [Italian version added] [more]


Ivan Krastev

The transparency delusion

Disillusionment with democracy founded on mistrust of business and political elites has prompted a popular obsession with transparency. But the management of mistrust cannot remedy voters' loss of power and may spell the end for democratic reform. [more]


Peter Pomerantsev

Cracks in the Kremlin matrix

Peter Pomerantsev enters the matrix of managed democracy that underpins postmodern dictatorship in Russia. He discovers a society of pure spectacle where, amid fake parties, fake opposition, fake scandals and fake action, political technologists turn (almost) everything into PR. [German and Ukrainian versions added] [more]


Oleg Riabov, Tatiana Riabova

The decline of Gayropa?

How Russia intends to save the world

The Sochi winter Olympics are over but Russia's anti-gay laws remain. Tatiana Riabova and Oleg Riabov show how discourse in Russia brands "European sexual deviancy" a natural result of western democratic development; and Russia as the last bastion of "normalcy". [Swedish version added] [more]


Kirill Rogov

Monopoly on violence vs. the right to rebel

A surge of state violence and the subsequent curtailment of citizens' right to protest, combined with an expansion of the authorities' right to use force: Kirill Rogov reveals how the "Putin doctrine" once applied to protests in Russia brought Ukraine to the brink of civil war. [more]


Mischa Gabowitsch

Both your houses

Protest and opposition in Russia and Ukraine

There is one central similarity between Euromaidan and other recent movements across the world: protesters' self-reliance and distrust of politicians who pretend to represent them is what gives their movement its democratic credentials, but it is also a weakness. [more]


Mykola Riabchuk

Euromaidan and beyond

Preliminary conclusions

Euromaidan is not just about failing to sign the Association Agreement, it is about Ukraine's whole development as a country. For 22 years, it has been stuck in a grey zone between post-Soviet autocracies to the east and democratizing neighbours to the west, writes Mykola Riabchuk. [more]


Ivan Krastev

Who lost Ukraine?

Almost overnight, Ukraine ceased to be a "kingdom in the middle". Now there are only three options left, writes Ivan Krastev: sign the agreement with the EU, as the majority of Ukrainians want; join Putin's Eurasia, as the endangered political elite desire; or go bankrupt. [more]


Claus Offe

Two-and-a-half theories

Post-democracy in the age of global financial markets

Beyond short-lived mass protests and a further swelling of the ranks of the popular right, the democratization of democracy is still possible, contends Claus Offe. But not if political life remains locked within the "prison of the market". [Russian version added] [more]


Nilüfer Göle

Public space democracy

As democratic imaginaries linked to new protest movements circulate globally, Nilüfer Göle reassesses relations between the public sphere and democracy; and shows how the Gezi Park movement has used public space as a site for the rehearsal of new forms of citizenship. [more]


Maxim Trudolyubov

The Stalinist order, the Putinist order

Private life, political change and property in Russian society

The "Stalinist order" continues to lurk in aesthetic forms and written documents; from an architectural perspective, it lives on as long as the buildings survive. And merges with the new order, in which the new "elite" buy up the same buildings and imitative newbuilds for artificially inflated prices. [more]


Vladislav Inozemtsev

Russia Inc.

The new realities of the Russian state

Europe should prepare itself for long-term cooperation with the energy-rich kleptocracy on its eastern borders. Because, given that the personal enrichment of politicians is part of the very foundation of the regime, Russia's ruling political elite is not about to change any time soon. [more]


Fyodor Lukyanov

Under cover

The emergence of Russia's new foreign policy

That Russia will never be a superpower as the USSR once was leaves it searching for a new international identity. Fyodor Lukyanov argues that Moscow's policy is a skilful imitation of striving for global status, intended to conceal the narrowing of the sphere of its immediate interests. [more]


Nikolay Petrov

Reconfiguring power

The permanent election campaign

Ever since the outburst of protests around the December 2011 elections in Russia, the country has seemed to be on the verge of change. But what kind of change? Whether civic unrest brings about democratization, or induces Putin to tighten his grip on power, remains to be seen. [more]


Alexander Etkind

Colonizing oneself

Imperial puzzles for the twenty-first century

Having been both the subject and the object of colonization, Russia has a special relevance for postcolonial theory. Literary scholar Alexander Etkind unites two very different narratives of imperial Russia under the overarching principle of "internal colonization". [more]


David Martin

Religion and violence

Critiquing the "new atheism"

Sociologist of religion David Martin calls proponents of an aggressive "new atheism" to task for collapsing arguments over the relation between religion and violence into ahistorical conjecture. This poses a threat to both scholarly standards and public debate in general. [more]


Jacques Rupnik

The euro crisis: Central European lessons

Differing national situations in eastern central Europe explain lack of solidarity and varying perceptions of the crisis' risks and remedies, writes Jacques Rupnik, and can be seen in terms of political lessons learned. [German version added] [more]


Robert Cooper

The European Union and the Habsburg Monarchy

The threat that the EU faces today is as deadly as the one that confronted the Habsburg Monarchy a hundred years ago, writes British diplomat Robert Cooper, one of the intellectual architects of EU foreign policy. But getting it right does not need a miracle. [Polish version added] [more]


Ivan Krastev

The European dis-Union

Lessons from the Soviet collapse

Too big to fail? Too crisis-hardened to go under? The collapse of the Soviet Union has something to teach Europe's politicians if another leap from the unthinkable to the inevitable is to be avoided in the case of the EU, argues Ivan Krastev. [Polish version added] [more]


Ivan Krastev, Gleb Pavlovsky, Tatiana Zhurzhenko

The politics of no alternatives

An interview with Gleb Pavlovsky

Gleb Pavlovsky, erstwhile political advisor to Vladimir Putin, whose election campaigns he masterminded in 2000 and 2004, talks to "Transit" about the workings of power in the Soviet Union and in post-Soviet Russia. [more]


Samuel A. Greene

Russia: Society, politics and the search for community

What are the factors that could end Russia's democratic inertia? While pressure from below is likely to provoke consolidation of the elites, writes Samuel A. Greene, long-term economic decline might encourage greater European integration and reform of the country's institutions. [more]


Vladislav Inozemtsev

Can Russia be modernized?

Problems, causes, opportunities

Plans to modernize Russia's economy are resisted by bureaucracies benefiting from the country's role as natural resource appendage of the developed world. That dependency on energy exports hinders political and economic progress is certain. But is high-tech the solution? [more]


Stephen Holmes, Ivan Krastev

The sense of an ending

Blatantly rigged elections are the easiest way for the Putin regime to mimic the authoritarian power it does not possess. December's protests destroyed Putin's reputation of being in control; even genuinely competitive elections would be unable to restore his legitimacy. [more]


Tatiana Zhurzhenko

Land of confusion

Ukraine, the EU and the Tymoshenko case

The Ukraine-European Union summit, planned for 19 December, was to have brought talks on an Association Agreement to a conclusion. But conflict with the EU over the prosecution of Yuliya Tymoshenko means Ukraine's future hangs in the balance, writes Tatiana Zhurzhenko. [more]


Paul Starr

Bad news for the news

The good news is: the digital revolution has revitalized journalism. The bad news: nobody wants to pay for it. With the Internet undermining the economic basis of professional reporting, the freedom of the press in western democracies is at stake, warns sociologist Paul Starr. [more]


Thomas Schmid

The story behind the story

The newspaper crisis shows that another kind of journalism is needed: one that goes into detail, tells great stories, provides background, poses questions and turns answers into more questions. Thomas Schmid, publisher of "Die Welt", calls for a revival of journalistic virtues. [more]


Ivan Krastev

Democratic, can travel

The Russian regime's abandonment of the ideology of public interest prevents it being measured against its own standards, while its policy of open borders diffuses protest from a dissatisfied middle class. Ivan Krastev on reasons for authoritarianism's tenacity. [Hungarian version added] [more]


Miklós Haraszti

Notes on Hungary's media law package

(Updated following the agreement with the European Commission)

Hungary's media law could lead to a depoliticization of the media the likes of which exists in Russia and other post-Soviet democracies, writes the former OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media. The alterations to the law will do little to this halt this tendency. [more]


Cornelia Klinger

Tricolour – three colours of justice

The modern notion of justice linked to ideas of human rights and democracy is highly complex, pulling in different directions. Cornelia Klinger explains how "justice" as we understand it today can be inferred from the conceptual trinity of the French Revolution. [more]


Roman Frydman, Michael D. Goldberg

Market mysticism

Faith in the "efficient markets hypothesis" is largely to blame for the massive deregulation of the late 1990s and early 2000s that made the crisis more likely, if not inevitable. Two economists excoriate the ideology of self-regulating markets and its pseudo-scientific foundations. [more]


Dipesh Chakrabarty

Brute force

The climate justice position is necessary but not sufficient for comprehending the current crisis, writes Dipesh Chakrabarty. As a geophysical force, the human species wields a new kind of agency unaccounted for in familiar narratives of the history of capitalist growth. [more]


Faisal Devji

Loving the enemy: Al-Qaeda's vision of the West

9/11 organizer Khalid Sheikh Mohammed exploited his trial to remind the court of its human rights obligations, while Osama bin Laden's statements include appeals to religious pluralism. Al-Qaeda's use of liberal categories is central to its rhetoric, writes Faisal Devji. [more]


Timothy Snyder

Holocaust: The ignored reality

Auschwitz and the Gulag are generally taken to be adequate or even final symbols of the evil of mass slaughter. But they are only the beginning of knowledge, a hint of the true reckoning with the past still to come, writes Timothy Snyder. [more]


Claus Offe

Lessons learned and open questions

The dissatisfaction expressed by the many not to have benefited from transition suggests post-communist welfare states have a long way to go before they attain western levels of credibility. Their democracies depend on that gap being bridged, argues Claus Offe. [more]


Jacques Rupnik

The crisis and the end of liberalism in central Europe

Even as the state took over large portions of the private banking sector in the US and UK, politicians in central Europe were singing the praises of Anglo-Saxon market liberalism. They are the last orphans of Bush and Cheney, writes Jacques Rupnik. [more]


Krzysztof Pomian

European identity: Historical fact and political problem

An historian can define European identity descriptively, as Krzysztof Pomian demonstrates in a tour of European culture since the first millennium BC. But the real controversy lies elsewhere, in the political question: what of the European past is worth preserving? [more]


Krzysztof Michalski

The frailty of the whole

The thought of Leszek Kolakowski, who died on 17 July, is inscribed into the post-war memory of Poland, writes Krzysztof Michalski. Throughout the philosopher's varied intellectual trajectory, one theme persisted: that of human frailty. [more]


Oliver Geden

Strategic consumption or sustainable policy?

The power of the "environmentally aware consumer" is overrated. A fundamental change in "material flow management" can only be achieved via blanket regulation, writes Oliver Geden. The new EU law on energy-saving bulbs lights the way. [more]


Claus Leggewie, Harald Welzer

Can democracies deal with climate change?

Trust in the ability of political elites to deal with the eco-social consequences of climate change is evaporating. Reaching eco-political targets calls for more participation of citizens as active architects of their society, write Claus Leggewie and Harald Welzer. [more]


Ivan Krastev

The crisis of the post-Cold War European order

Ivan Krastev argues that a policy of engagement focused on national interest and a radical turn from value-based foreign policy to nineteenth century Realpolitik is not a workable option for relations between Russia and the West. [more]


Aleksander Smolar

Years of '68

The Western revolutionaries of '68 were often hostile towards supporters of the Warsaw March revolt and indifferent towards the subsequent "anti-Zionist" purges. Yet the events were disastrous for Polish Jews at the time and are still relevant forty years later. [more]


Mykola Riabchuk

How I became a Czech and a Slovak

Mykola Riabchuk recalls how the politics of the Prague Spring filtered through to Ukraine until the crackdown on "bourgeois nationalism" five years later; and how, during perestroika, the roles were reversed and he brought banned literature to friends in Czechoslovakia. [more]


Jacques Rupnik

1968: The year of two springs

Parallels between May '68 and the Prague Spring are largely the result of the simultaneity of the events; in important respects, the political goals of the two movements were antithetical. Nevertheless, central European dissent had a significant impact on the French Left after 1968, argues Jacques Rupnik. [more]


Rudi Dutschke, Jacques Rupnik

The misunderstanding of 1968

One of the last interviews with Rudi Dutschke

Speaking a year before his death, Rudi Dutschke explained the reasons for the German Left's failure to understand what was at stake in Czechoslovakia in 1968. "In retrospect, the great event of '68 in Europe was not Paris, but Prague. But we were unable to see this at the time." [more]


Martin Hala

From "big character posters" to blogs

Facets of independent self-expression in China

Blogging in China has often been compared to samizdat publishing during the Cultural Revolution. Yet despite predictions to the contrary, the Internet has not brought abrupt political change in China. Its significance and implications for Chinese society lie elsewhere, writes Martin Hala. [more]


Joschka Fischer

Not an island

Europe and the Middle East

Europe can play a major role in averting conflict in the Middle East, says Joschka Fischer. But does it have the instruments and institutions to do so? Given the urgency of the situation, can Europeans afford the luxury of being against Europe? [more]


Jan-Werner Müller

European memory politics revisited

European commemorative culture is an integral component of the post-national process. But how can a "European memory" be justified if we aren't to refer to a continental, quasi-national entity? [more]


Ralf Dahrendorf

Eight remarks on populism

A fissure has opened up between citizens and power, information gaps that invite conspiracy theories and patent recipes. The parliamentary process is empirically the best antidote to populism; its gradual erosion presents one of the greatest challenges to contemporary liberal politics. [more]


Ivan Krastev

The populist moment

Unlike the extremist parties of the 1930s, the new populist movements do not aim to abolish democracy: quite the opposite, writes Ivan Krastev. What we are witnessing is a conflict between elites suspicious of democracy and increasingly illiberal publics. [more]


Jacek Kochanowicz

Right turn

Polish politics at the beginning of the twenty-first century

Alternatives to the anti-communism and national conservatism of Poland's two main rightwing parties are barely offered by a Centre-Left tarnished by corruption scandals. With new elections set for 21 October, it seems unlikely that Poland will alter its course rightwards. [more]


Jacques Rupnik

Populism in Eastern Central Europe

Directly after the fall of communism, hopes burgeoned for democracy in the "new" Eastern Central Europe. What does the current climate of populism mean for these hopes and how does it affect these countries' relations with the EU? [more]


Ulrike Brunotte

Martyrdom, patria, and the cult of dead warriors

Maleness and soteriology in war

The battle of Langemarck in 1914, in the course of which up to 20 000 German soldiers died, became a powerful myth of youth, honour, maleness, and martyrdom for National Socialism. The fascist slogan "Death lives!" expressed the transformation of biopower into "death power" in the racist model of the nation. [more]


Oliver Krüger

Perfecting the human being

Death and immortality in post- and trans-humanism

Post- and trans-humanism's relentlessly utopian responses to the "problem of mortality" are the flipside to Günther Anders' diagnosis of "Promethian shame". [more]


José Casanova

Religion, European secular identities and European integration

The rapid secularization of western Europe has not diminished the unease with which Europe considers Islam in its midst. In this benchmark essay, José Casanova argues that the "Islam problem" is an indicator of the disparity between liberal and illiberal strands of European secularism. [more]


Rainer Münz

Old Europe

A look ahead to the twenty-first century

With rising life expectancy, stagnating working-age populations, and low birth rates, Europe faces a demographic challenge over the next fifty years the likes of which it has never known. [more]


Charles Hirschman

The impact of immigration on American society

Looking backward to the future

In a survey of the history of American immigration, Charles Hirschman points out that almost all popular fears about immigration and even the negative judgements of "experts" have been proven false by history. [more]


Olivier Roy

Islamic evangelism

Islam in Europe

Religious and political radicalism among European Muslims is less an import from the cultures and conflicts of the Middle East than a consequence of the globalization and westernization of Islam, writes Olivier Roy. [more]


Nilüfer Göle

The Islamist identity

Islam, European public space, and civility

It is not distance from, but proximity to modern life that triggers a return to religious identity among migrant Muslims in Europe, says Nilüfer Göle. The religious self for individual Muslims is being shifted from the private to the public realm. [more]


Ivaylo Ditchev

Utopia of freedom or reality of submission?

Large sections of the populations of countries at the peripheries of the EU are in permanent migratory motion. The trend towards overcoming arbitrary socio-political territories has its apotheosis in the Internet's utopian horizon of absolute mobility. [more]


Jacques Rupnik

Anatomy of a crisis

The Referendum and the dilemmas of the enlarged European Union

The derailing of the EU constitution in 2005 raised fears that Europe would become divided and increasingly unstable. On the underlying causes and possible consequences of the crisis of the European project. [more]


Jan-Werner Müller

A "pause for thought" without the thought?

Possible ways to talk about the future of the EU today

The one-year "pause for thought" launched by Europe's elites after the rejection of the EU constitution in 2005 was extended in June 2006. This time could be used to discuss the pros and cons of competing Euro-visions, writes Jan-Werner Müller. [more]


Claus Leggewie

Equally criminal?

Totalitarian experience and European memory

Political differences between European member states can be worked out only if a "European memory" is developed. The difficulty lies in paying due respect to the memory of the crimes both of Nazism and of Soviet totalitarianism while avoiding a hierarchy of competing victim groups. [more]


Aleksander Smolar

The return of the radicals

The radical government stems from that section of the Solidarity movement opposed to the route transformation took after 1989. Their cultural conservatism has landed on fertile ground in a contemporary Poland suffering from social alienation and distrust in democratic institutions [more]


Olivier Mongin, Jean-Louis Schlegel

The legislation of 1905

Should France's laws from 1905 regulating laïcité be reformed after a century of changes in the religious composition of French society? [more]


Philipp Ther

The burden of history and the trap of memory

The displacement of Germans at the end of WWII has re-entered the public debate with the TV drama "Die Flucht" [The escape]. Philipp Ther discusses the reasons for the shift in the way the German wartime past is being remembered. [more]


Daničle Hervieu-Léger

The role of religion in establishing social cohesion

Nostalgia about a religious past will not help solve the question of a "European soul". Instead, the weakening of religion could prove a starting point for a reconsideration of Europe's religious heritage. [more]


Abdesselam Cheddadi

The question of tolerance in Islamic societies

Today's Muslim societies must consider afresh the question of tolerance, and ask why they find themselves mired in indecision and resentment, says Abdesselam Cheddadi. [more]


Roman Szporluk

The western dimension of the making of modern Ukraine

The history of Ukrainian independence begins with the revolution in 1848, and thereafter is shaped by European and Russian interests. [more]


Timothy Snyder

Balancing the books

Sixty years and more since the end of WWII, eastern European experiences of subjugation are often glossed over. This creates misunderstandings that could be avoided by an awareness of a common European history. Then, solidarity rather than national prejudice would motivate public opinion on matters of European politics. [more]


Pierre Nora

Reasons for the current upsurge in memory

Over the past quarter century, social structures have undergone a sea change in their traditional relationship to the past. Pierre Nora examines the roots and causes of "memorialism". [Italian version added] [more]


Tatiana Zhurzhenko

Is Ukraine heading for breakup?

Parts of Ukraine threaten to seek autonomy from the capital Kiev. Tatiana Zhurzhenko looks at what is behind these threats. How big is the risk of Ukraine falling apart? [more]


Timothy Snyder

Ukraine: an opportunity for Europe

There are moments in history when one must think broadly and ambitiously. To secure democracy in Ukraine is certainly in the interest of the European Union, writes Timothy Snyder. It is also a test for a Europe that wishes to play a role in the world. [more]


Oksana Zabuzhko

Ukraine's Solidarity

Ukrainian author Oksana Zabuzhko walks the streets of Kiev and witnesses an unprecedented upsurge of national solidarity. "To put it simply," she writes, "'they' are the power - the most widely hated power in Ukraine since Soviet times. And 'we' - we are the people." [more]


Tymofiy Havryliv

The second turning point

The Ukrainians fight for their right to a democratic state

What we see in the Ukraine today is a second turning point. Without a democratic and European Ukraine, Europe risks being brought back to the times of the Cold War. [more]


Slavenka Drakulic

Triumph of evil

Portrait of a war criminal

Slavenka Draculic on Radislav Krstic, the first war criminal to be indicted in The Hague for his role in the Srebrenica massacre. [more]


Petya Kabakchieva

Eurolocal perspectives towards the EU

Imagining the European Union as a nation-state

In Bulgaria, the EU has replaced the nation-state as a symbol of authority. Nevertheless, regional identity won't get lost, since regions "are a configuration of liminalities that overlap and accrue, providing different options". [more]


Nelly Bekus-Goncharova

An invisible wall

The hidden factor of Belarusian reality

Who is to blame for the political stagnation in Belarus? [more]


Roman Szporluk

Why Ukrainians are Ukrainians

A Commentary on Mykola Riabchuk's "Ukraine: One State, two Countries"?

What does it take to build a civil society in the Ukraine? [more]


Tatiana Zhurzhenko

The myth of two Ukraines

A Commentary on Mykola Riabchuk's "Ukraine: One State, two Countries"?

Can the Ukraine overcome the rift between the 'europeanized' West and the 'russified' East of the country? [more]


Mykola Riabchuk

Ukraine: One State, Two Countries?

Does the Ukrainian political elite use the country's deep sense of political ambivalence to stay in power? [more]


Krzysztof Pomian

Western prejudices, Polish fears

Who's afraid of the European enlargement? [more]


Joanna Tokarska-Bakir

Poland as the sick man of Europe?

Jedwabne, "post-memory" and historians

Joanna Tokarska-Bakir investigates the defence mechanisms triggered by the European past: on the one hand the Holocaust guilt-complex and on the other the language historians use to talk about it. [more]


Jacqueline Hénard

Right wing populism as class struggle

France after April 21st

Where did it all go wrong for the French political elite? [more]


Claus Leggewie

Transnational movements and the question of democracy

Social movements can provide an early warning system to mainstream politics. But once institutionalized, their lack of democratic mandate raises problems of legitimacy. This paradox must be negotiated if democracy is to respond to the global situation. [more]


Jacques Rupnik

Between democratic fatigue and the politics of fear

The French presidential elections 2002

This was no regular presidential election, it was a referendum on basic commitment to democratic values and an open society. Jacques Rupnik takes a look at French politics and discovers a radical shift. [more]


Richard Hyman

Where Does Solidarity End?

What changes do trade unions need to implement in order to construct a meaningful and just framework for today's workforce? [more]


Alexei Miller

The Communist Past in Post-Communist Russia

Alexei Miller on the flaws, achievements, problems and development of Russia's process of dealing with its Communist past. [more]


Anatoly M Khazanov

Contemporary Russian Nationalism between East and West

In the current Russian conditions of social and political fragmentation, nationalism has - inevitably - become a very important factor in the country's development, writes A. Khazanov. [more]


Jacek Kochanowicz

Poland: In or Out?

Where is the West of Europe and where is its East? At hand of the Polish example, Jacek Kochanowicz looks at an elusive border that remains difficult to draw on either side of a country. [more]


Daniel Chirot

Returning to Reality

Culture, Modernisation and Various Eastern Europes

Daniel Chirot warns that the differentiation between "East" and "Central" Europe draws a new border between "East" and "West" which will result in excluding the poorer parts of Europe and will keep them poorer in delaying their modernisation. [more]


Jacques Rupnik

EU Enlargement to the East

The Anatomy of a Reticence

A decade after the collapse of communism, the EU has still not been extended towards the East. Can Europe meet the challenge of integration for integration's sake? [more]


Thomas Schramme

Tainted Humanity

The Dilemma of Military Interventions

As a response to the NATO intervention in Kosovo, a debate erupted as to the moral basis of humanitarian interventions: How can one reconcile the fact that the defence of one group's rights endangers those of another? [more]


Jyoti Mistry

(Hi)Story, Truth and Nation

Building a "new" South Africa

Story-telling as a major component of building a national identity, the definitions of nations and nation states as well as the significance of history and memory are the building blocks that need to be considered in understanding how South Africa will develop a "new" identity. [more]


Ernest Gellner

Religion and the profane

"The difference between the success of Islam and the failure of Marxism is that [...] Islam never claimed that work is sacred." Ernest Gellner, speaking in 1995, draws surprising comparisons between Marxism and Islam. [more]


Danuta Beata Pawlak

Jeans and Veils

.. [more]


Charles Taylor

Democratic exclusion - and its consequences

Democracy as a political model demands, more than anything else, inclusion. However it also contains a dynamic of exclusion. Charles Taylor asks how this tendency can be counteracted. [more]


Joana Breidenbach, Ina Zukrigl

In the prism of the local

As globalisation takes root, local traditions and forms of life vanish faster than they did before. Simultaneously, we find better ways of reserving those lost traditions. Forms of life are not erased in creolised culture, they take on new and integrating shapes. [more]


Timothy Garton Ash, Janos Kis, Jacques Rupnik, Karl zu Schwarzenberg, Martin M. Simecka, Aleksander Smolar

Europe after the Kosovo War

.. [more]


Pal Nyiri

New Asian Migration to Eastern Europe

The Case of the Chinese in Hungary

.. [more]


Charles S. Maier

Territorialism and Globalism

.. [more]



Articles published in the partner section


Focal points     click for more

Debating solidarity in Europe
In the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis, questions of inequality and solidarity have become intertwined. Over the past year, however, questions of solidarity have also been central in connection to the treatment of refugees and migrants. [more]

Ukraine: Beyond conflict stories
Follow the critical, informed and nuanced voices that counter the dominant discourse of crisis concerning Ukraine. A media exchange project linking Ukrainian independent media with "alternative" media in Germany, France, Spain, Italy and Greece. [more]

Russia in global dialogue
In the two decades after the end of the Cold War, intellectual interaction between Russia and Europe has intensified. It has not, however, prompted a common conversation. The focal point "Russia in global dialogue" seeks to fuel debate on democracy, society and the legacy of empire. [more]

Ukraine in European dialogue
Post-revolutionary Ukrainian society displays a unique mix of hope, enthusiasm, social creativity, collective trauma of war, radicalism and disillusionment. Two years after the country's uprising, the focal point "Ukraine in European dialogue" takes stock. [more]

Culture and the commons
Across Europe, citizens are engaging in new forms of cultural cooperation while developing alternative and participatory democratic practices. The commons is where cultural and social activists meet a broader public to create new ways of living together. [more]

2016 Jean Améry Prize collection
To coincide with the awarding of the 2016 Jean Améry Prize for European essay writing, Eurozine publishes essays by authors nominated for the prize, including by a representative selection of Eurozine partner journals. [more]

The politics of privacy
The Snowden leaks and the ensuing NSA scandal made the whole world debate privacy and data protection. Now the discussion has entered a new phase - and it's all about policy. A focal point on the politics of privacy: claiming a European value. [more]

Beyond Fortress Europe
The fate of migrants attempting to enter Fortress Europe has triggered a new European debate on laws, borders and human rights. A focal point featuring reportage alongside articles on policy and memory. With contributions by Fabrizio Gatti, Seyla Benhabib and Alessandro Leogrande. [more]

Vacancies at Eurozine     click for more

Eurozine is seeking an Online Editor and Social Media Manager for its office in Vienna.

Preferred starting date: February 2017.
Applications deadline: 31 January 2017.

Conferences     click for more

Eurozine emerged from an informal network dating back to 1983. Since then, European cultural magazines have met annually in European cities to exchange ideas and experiences. Around 100 journals from almost every European country are now regularly involved in these meetings.
Mobilizing for the Commons
The 27th European Meeting of Cultural Journals
Gdańsk, 4-6 November 2016
The Eurozine conference 2016 in Gdańsk framed the general topic of solidarity with a focus on mobilizing for the commons. The event took place in the European Solidarity Centre in Gdańsk and thus linked contemporary debate to the history of a broad, non-violent, anti-communist social movement which has started in the city's shipyard in 1980. [more]

Support Eurozine     click for more

If you appreciate Eurozine's work and would like to support our contribution to the establishment of a European public sphere, see information about making a donation.

Eurozine BLOG

On the Eurozine BLOG, editors and Eurozine contributors comment on current affairs and events. What's behind the headlines in the world of European intellectual journals?
In memoriam: Ales Debeljak (1961-2016)
On 28 January 2016, Ales Debeljak died in a car crash in Slovenia. He will be much missed as an agile and compelling essayist, a formidable public speaker and a charming personality. [more]

Time to Talk     click for more

Time to Talk, a network of European Houses of Debate, has partnered up with Eurozine to launch an online platform. Here you can watch video highlights from all TTT events, anytime, anywhere.
Neda Deneva, Constantina Kouneva, Irina Nedeva and Yavor Siderov
Does migration intensify distrust in institutions?
How do migration and institutional mistrust relate to one another? As a new wave of populism feeds on and promotes fears of migration, aggrandising itself through the distrust it sows, The Red House hosts a timely debate with a view to untangling the key issues. [more]

Editor's choice     click for more

Jürgen Habermas, Michaël Foessel
Critique and communication: Philosophy's missions
Decades after first encountering Anglo-Saxon perspectives on democracy in occupied postwar Germany, Jürgen Habermas still stands by his commitment to a critical social theory that advances the cause of human emancipation. This follows a lifetime of philosophical dialogue. [more]

Literature     click for more

Karl Ove Knausgĺrd
Out to where storytelling does not reach
To write is to write one's way through the preconceived and into the world on the other side, to see the world as children can, as fantastic or terrifying, but always rich and wide-open. Karl Ove Knausgĺrd on creating literature. [more]

Jonathan Bousfield
Growing up in Kundera's Central Europe
Jonathan Bousfield talks to three award-winning novelists who spent their formative years in a Central Europe that Milan Kundera once described as the kidnapped West. It transpires that small nations may still be the bearers of important truths. [more]

Literary perspectives
The re-transnationalization of literary criticism
Eurozine's series of essays aims to provide an overview of diverse literary landscapes in Europe. Covered so far: Croatia, Sweden, Austria, Estonia, Ukraine, Northern Ireland, Slovenia, the Netherlands and Hungary. [more]

Debate series     click for more

Europe talks to Europe
Nationalism in Belgium might be different from nationalism in Ukraine, but if we want to understand the current European crisis and how to overcome it we need to take both into account. The debate series "Europe talks to Europe" is an attempt to turn European intellectual debate into a two-way street. [more]

Multimedia     click for more
Multimedia section including videos of past Eurozine conferences in Vilnius (2009) and Sibiu (2007). [more]

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