Commemoration risks becoming ideology-lite if it makes the fall of the Berlin Wall synonymous with the collapse of communism. Only real dialogue with the other side of the former Iron Curtain can save the West from parochialism.
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The moral and existential tenor of ecological politics today makes Günther Anders’s definition of the ‘third industrial revolution’ seem more contemporary than its much more recent sociological counterpart. This is a positive sign for climate politics and climate journalism.
Five years ago, Malala Yousafzai was listed among the most influential teenagers in the world. Her position is now contested by climate activist Greta Thunberg. Thankfully, they don’t compete with each other for fame. They do, however, challenge assumptions about what can and cannot be done in politics. Especially by girls.
Media professionals often engage in a collective hysteria. They complain about their loss of authority, signalling a deep unwillingness to take responsibility for our trade’s failures and, often, complicity. And yet, the ‘post-truth era’ is not a death toll of journalism, but the signal of a necessary change.
Paradox is the predominant mode in recent articles on 1989. As historical distance brings greater perspicacity on the past thirty years, so received ideas clash with facts, sharpening the focus for real contradictions.
Although on the rise, popular engagement with EU politics is still a poor reflection on European democracy. International coverage maintains a narrow focus, despite important and uneven developments in national politics throughout the Union. Eurozine’s series on the EP elections addresses this deficit.
Police violence, mass detentions, internet shutdown, arrest of opposition candidates: the reaction to the latest protests in Moscow has been an overreaction even by the standards of the Russian authorities. It seems that the government has good reason to be afraid of putting its popularity to the test. But is it advised to ask what next, given the sheer weight of resistance to democratization in Russia?
The sight of the US president staring ahead impassively while around him the crowd chanted ‘Send her back’, felt like the crossing of the Rubicon. This was the point when Trump and his Republican supporters finally dropped the mask and revealed their contempt for the values underlying the liberal consensus.
‘The Russians are in the pantry already!’ The European Union is finally starting to address the Kremlin’s political interference, but yet doesn’t address domestic disinformation.
Central and eastern Europe is boiling right now. Climate change is here to stay and dealing with it demands a new form of morality. It’s time to get those handheld fans out of grandma’s cupboard.
A clash of the titans is emerging in Eurozine, as the anniversary discourse starts to recount the cultural heritage and the political failures of 1989. Aleida Assmann heavily criticizes Stephen Holmes and Ivan Krastev; Holly Case and Ulrike Liebert offer resolutions.
The ‘containment’ argument fails to admit that, in order to reverse the Eurosceptic trend, Europe needs to confront its causes. Homilies about the rule of law will not do the trick. Addressing the rise of the right means reforming the European Union itself.
Regional differences seem to be the common denominator between the players of Project Europe. In an attempt to understand how the European vote is formed, we put some of the underlying issues on the map.
Few articles in the recent past can have been vilified so heavily by so many intelligent people than Francis Fukuyama’s ‘The end of history’. Now, thirty years on, the article is worth re-reading. Because, unless one is nostalgic for an orthodox version of dialectical materialism, it is hard to find anything to strongly disagree with. On the contrary.
‘A battle of generosity’ has broken out as the world watched the Notre Dame of Paris burn.The devastation was narrated live in the style of a disaster movie. Self-appointed champions are now rushing to take lead roles: that of the main donor, or the politician from afar who knew better what should have been done.
How we mark historical anniversaries says as much, if not more about our perception of the present as it does about the past. This familiar axiom has interesting results when we apply it to how the revolutions of ’89 have been remembered in each decade since.