As local journalism disappears, polls replace knowledge about communities. Is this one reason why politics seems increasingly unpredictable? Also: why subscription content is making a comeback in central eastern Europe – and what that might mean for cultures of impartiality.
Senior editor at Eurozine.
Long spared the experiences of Paris, Brussels, London and Berlin, it had been tempting to consider Vienna exempt. This was partly because IS had treated Austria as a safe haven rather than a target. But part of it was an unwillingness to look too closely.
A conversation with James Miller
A defining debate of the political moment? Or liberal hairsplitting? Eurozine talks to James Miller, editor of Public Seminar, about what we mean when we talk of fascism – and whether it makes any difference anyway.
‘Fascism’ has entered America’s political lexicon as way to understand and oppose the rise of the far-right. Trump’s polemics against the left have also propelled the label ‘antifascism’ into the mainstream. But are we really seeing a US fascism? What baggage does the concept of ‘antifascism’ carry? And what are we doing when we invoke Weimar?
Corporate capture of the media by the state is not just an eastern European speciality, nor does it take place in an economic vacuum. The 31st European Meeting of Cultural Journals will be focusing on how political interference and market pressure are threatening independent publishing in Europe today.
Can we use the f-word of history? Why understanding precisely what one is opposing will help dissent; how the trauma of WWII helped blur the European colonial past; and history in the making in Belarus.
Physical fear and the dread of disappointment have been the dominant emotions whenever elections have come around in Belarus in the past two-and-a-half decades. This time is no different. And yet something has changed.
An interview with Bellingcat founder Eliot Higgins
Bellingcat’s pathbreaking work on the shooting down of MH17 and on chemical weapons use in Syria has led to open source investigation being recognized as a vital journalistic technique. Eurozine talks to Bellingcat founder and director Eliot Higgins about both stories and the disinformation around them.
The recent embarrassment of the ‘New York Times’ over its story on Kremlin-orchestrated disinformation on US health science felt like the nail in the coffin of the ‘all roads lead to Putin’ narrative. Common sense now says that the new propaganda thrives best under democratic conditions.
The coronavirus pandemic took the spotlight from the refugee crisis on the Greek border with Turkey in early March long before a political solution could be reached. Now, the two situations have merged into a poly-crisis.
The technoliberationism that accompanied the early days of the web now belongs to myth. Deleting Facebook is the new rebellion. Surveillance capitalism is the buzzword. Regulating is radical. Introducing the new Eurozine focal point ‘Big Tech: The law of power?’
Thinking about ‘what to do’ about disinformation means understanding information’s positive quality as a public good. Abandoning a purely reactive strategy will stand democracies in better stead. Contributions to the new Eurozine focal point ‘Information: A public good’ reflect this way of thinking.
Eurozine podcast pt. 1: The changing face of the media
Regulation of media platforms has become an increasingly popular response to the challenges posed by disinformation and hyper-partisanship. But does regulation set a new set of traps for free speech and media diversity? And is it even adequate to the problem?
The illiberal backlash cannot be sanitized through conventional political morality: liberal democracy must redefine itself in order to win back credibility. Literature and literary debate are not necessarily where that process will start. But if they succumb to dogmatism, it is hard to see where else free thought will flourish.
Literature in a politicized age
In a politicized age, literary debate seems to be seeking consensus. But many still argue that the task of writers is to voice what would otherwise be seen as unacceptable. Today, the question is as much about how literature is talked about as what it talks about.
The description of the European Union as a ‘peace project’ recalls an important aspect of the genesis of post-war Europe. But a defence of Europe based on anti-fascism runs into dead ends – both conceptually and politically – if it sees European integration as a ‘post-national’ movement.