How can intense description of what is irreducibly particular help us to extract elements that are universal? Parallels between the child separations at the US–Mexico border and the experiences of Holocaust survivors prompt historian Marci Shore to ask what we can and cannot understand by thinking in comparisons with the past.
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The success of the French Popular Front lay in its ability to form a broad coalition on the left and to reach strata of the population traditionally ignored by communist parties. This is a lesson that antifascists today could do well to learn.
The 2020 pandemic as a representational crisis
Coronavirus has collapsed powerful imaginaries of globalization: a generation raised with the promise of knowledge and mobility is stuck and without a clue. Thus we search for names and images to tame the uncertainty.
Natasha Lennard in conversation with James Miller
Does ‘counter-violence’ damage the antifascist cause? Or is it delusory to talk about non-violence in the face of an opponent with no such scruples? Natasha Lennard explains to James Miller why antifascism rejects debate as an effective response to the fascist threat.
Discussing ‘The Legacy of division: Europe after 1989’ with the curators
Was it foolish to expect Europe to unite after the Iron Curtain fell? What kept the wounds from healing? Talking the post-Communist heritage in Gagarin, the Eurozine podcast.
‘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?
There are various reasons why it is politically expedient to call Trump a fascist, but doing so clouds our judgement about the kind of authoritarianism he represents. Trump’s encouragement of ethnic antagonism is typical of far-right populism globally and will endure in the US beyond his presidency.
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.
If, like Miriam Rasch, you want to resist seamless dataism and de-automate your life, why not take a look at her recommended reading from the Eurozine archive spanning articles from the politics of digitization to poetry’s ability to creatively engage with fragmentation.
Olivier Corpet in memoriam
Olivier Corpet, the journals editor and director of the Institute for Contemporary Publishing Archives, passed away on 6 October. In the 1980s he was a central figure in the founding of the European Meeting of Cultural Journals, the informal network that developed into Eurozine. Carl Henrik Fredriksson and Klaus Nellen, Eurozine co-founders, pay tribute to Corpet.
Ethnolinguistic segregation in Tallinn districts
Estonia boasts a unified housing and labour market. So why do native Estonian and Russian-speaking residents predominantly live in separate areas of the capital? Given its current market-driven tendency, Tiit Tammaru questions whether greater cohesion or further segregation mark Tallinn’s future neighbourhoods.
Russian notes towards a global debate
Controversies over whether there has ever been a true antifascism are ultimately irresolvable. Understanding the varieties of Soviet and post-Soviet antifascism can de-parochialize this debate and add to a conversation appropriate to the global challenge of authoritarian ultra-nationalism.
Awareness of Islamic history may need significantly more attention in the US but not by falsely glorifying the achievements of an Ottoman sultan. Reinforcing the hero myth makes a mockery of historical accuracy and greater complexity.
Sparked by raids on the offices of the Bulgarian president Rumen Radev in July, after mounting dissatisfaction with the Borisov government, the ongoing protests in the country express broad resentment towards a powerful clique whose corrupt methods hark back to the criminal 1990s.
Merkel’s volte-face on Europe has been prompted by a shift in the balance of power in Germany’s party landscape, argues Jürgen Habermas. The rise of the AfD has forced the German leadership to reappraise the imbalances of reunification and to re-assume the role the country had thirty years ago in shaping Europe’s future.
Analogies between the US and Weimar Germany ignore that democratic backsliding under Trump is not the reversion to an illiberal norm. To call Trump a fascist is equally unhistorical: if there is a comparison, then it is with Europe’s rightwing populists. But is factual accuracy even the point when it comes to the discourse of antifascism?