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Cover for: Changing places

Changing places

Notes for an essay film

After moving from Johannesburg (Jo’burg) to Gothenburg (Go’burg), filmmaker Jyoti Mistry struck up a friendship with someone who went the other way: Katarina Hedrén, who was adopted by a white Swedish family, and moved to South Africa as an adult. This deeply personal take on race shows how ‘colour-blindness’ denies that racial prejudice exists but robs people of colour of words to talk about the discrimination they face.

Cover for: This mess of troubled times

The processes set in motion by the disintegration of the socialist economy in eastern Europe eluded all analytical frameworks. It was a time of ‘wild thinking’, in which received ideas were reconsidered and values re-assessed. We are still living through this troubled era, writes the historian of the Soviet Union Karl Schlögel.

Cover for: A few loose sentences

In a politicized age, the scepticism and elegance that have traditionally characterized the art of the essay can seem extravagant. In the US in particular, there have been calls for essayists to trim their sails and position themselves explicitly. Does the new mood of engagement mean that the essay’s habitual rejection of dogmatism is passé?

Cover for: How climate changes humans

How climate changes humans

Contrasting reads from the Eurozine archive

The Anthropocene is a fashionable research topic these days, and the imminent climate crisis seems to have finally started to shake the conscience of people all over the world. Though it wasn’t always this way, contributors to Eurozine’s partner journals have been covering these issues long before they became hot news items – and they offer important perspectives for today’s reader.

Cover for: Insight mustn't be a luxury

The share economy, although originally built on the logic of mutual help, has been weaponized by monopolistic enterprises to foster precarity, gentrification and political deception. But this doesn’t mean that trading in goodwill was a bad idea in the first place. Eurozine is the proof itself.

Cover for: The war on rough sleeping

The war on rough sleeping

On the criminalization of homelessness in Hungary

The criminalization of homelessness was written into the Hungarian constitution in 2018. Punitive measures are not unique to the Orbán government. But only Hungary has outlawed ‘habitually staying in a public space’.

Cover for: The changing dilemmas of Ukrainian Orthodoxy

The January 2019 creation of an autocephalous Orthodox Church of Ukraine, independent of Russian religious and political power, has produced tensions at home and in the wider Orthodox world. Presented by the Poroshenko regime as a patriotic symbol, it has yet to establish itself as the dominant Ukrainian church. Moscow’s efforts to undermine the OCU have hindered its recognition globally, though the tide may be turning and the church’s future depends on how it meets these challenges.

Cover for: How modernity invented tradition

How modernity invented tradition

The self-presentation of the Russian avant-garde

The ‘discovery’ of Medieval icons after a 1913 exhibition marks a shift in the Russian avant-garde’s self-image. From now on, the path of western modernism would be abandoned in favour of a distinctively ‘Russian’ art. But in inventing a tradition for themselves, avant-gardists ‘rediscovered’ a sensibility that didn’t need unearthing.

Cover for: The promise recalled: Reads

The promise recalled: Reads

Writings from the speakers of the 30th European Meeting of Cultural Journals in Berlin

The conference ‘Europe ’89: the promise recalled’ featured speakers like Aleida Assmann, Karl Schlögel, Susan Neiman, Philipp Ther, Holly Case, Ivan Krastev, and more. Here you find their articles published in Eurozine.

Cover for: 1989 beyond parochialism

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.

Cover for: Legacies of 1989 for dissent today

What are the legacies of dissent, thirty years after 1989? Two places to look are the 2011 Arab Spring and Armenia’s revolts in 2018. They both teach different lessons about establishing the interpersonal conditions for successful non-violent rebellions and restoring social trust in an illiberal age when authoritarians use ‘hybrid warfare’ tactics to disrupt democracies from the inside.

Cover for: ‘The future was next to you’

‘The future was next to you’

An interview with Ivan Krastev on ’89 and the end of liberal hegemony

Ivan Krastev and Stephen Holmes argue that illiberalism in central eastern Europe today is part of a global contestation of western liberal hegemony. In an interview with Eurozine, Krastev elaborates on this thesis, discussing what happened to the hopes of ’89, why dissidence cannot be equated with anti-capitalism or even liberalism, and why explaining the new authoritarianism as a backlash against the ‘imitation imperative’ is not to trivialize its ideological substance.

Cover for: Lies, fakes and deep fakes

Lies, fakes and deep fakes

Deceptions and scams in the age of Trump

‘Deep fakes’ are increasingly being used to damage the reputation of political leaders, interfere in elections, and undermine faith in the veracity of public discourse. Concerted action by civil society groups, states and social media intermediaries is the only way to nip this new danger to democracy in the bud.

Cover for: The price of unity

The price of unity

The transformation of Germany and east central Europe after 1989

The strength of the German economy is often attributed to the shock therapy of the 1990s. But in 1999, the reunited country was considered ‘the sick man of the euro’. Its failings were blamed on the socialist legacy, yet the economic crisis was the result of western decision-making in 1990. Comparison with the economies of Poland and Czech Republic suggests that shock therapy was not the key to Germany’s success.

Cover for: Free expression on the margins

Free expression on the margins

The Kremlin and the media

On coming to power, Vladimir Putin set about restricting the freedoms that Russian media enjoyed under Yeltsin. After the protests of 2011–12, even the smaller-audience media that still pursued editorial independence came under pressure. Recently, a rise in civic activism and the rapid expansion of internet technologies have brought a new vibrancy – although non-government media remain powerless before the Kremlin’s political monopoly.

Cover for: Doing the right thing in the Anthropocene

The ‘Anthropocene’ raises new questions about our collective responsibility for the fate of our planet. It prompts us to ask what we owe to future generations, who will face the consequences of today’s climate crisis, and what kind of democratic policies are needed to respond adequately.

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