Articles

Read more than 6000 articles in 35 languages from over 90 cultural journals and associates.

Cover for: Kyiv: A love letter

For Oksana Forostyna, memories of Maidan mingle with accounts of her grandmother’s life in Kyiv before and during World War Two. Recollections of her own search for happiness in her adoptive city lead to more universal questions about the possibility of freedom and love amidst conflict and war.

Cover for: Rediscovering democracy through art

If art wants to intervene in politics, it must democratize. Curator and politician Veronica Kaup-Hasler talks to Slovene journal Dialogi about her experiments in participatory artistic practice, about cultural policy and the balancing of conflicting interests, and about why the politicization of cultural funding can be bad for art.

Cover for: Our future with crypto

Whether or not crypto-currencies deserve the hype, the hope remains that they can lead to more solidary forms of economy. Crypto has come to stay and, with a US debt crisis looming, may at some point become the more popular option.

Cover for: Football, fascism and fandom in modern Italy

The Fascist regime laid the foundations of contemporary football in Italy, however its influence was not profound enough to explain the far-right’s existence in stadiums since the 1980s. The far-right’s presence in Italian football has instead been a direct consequence of the weakness of the post-war state.

Cover for: Ubu Roi in Hungary

Ubu Roi in Hungary

Viktor Orbán’s ‘total offensive’ on culture

In the pursuit of cultural hegemony, Viktor Orbán’s Fidesz government has carried out a full-scale assault on the Hungarian cultural establishment, taking over funding bodies, defaming critics and putting loyalists in positions of influence. The result today is almost total conformity to the Hungarian nationalism of Fidesz and the sidelining of independent culture.

Cover for: In surveillance valley

In surveillance valley

An interview with Yasha Levine

‘Everything that we’ve been sold about the democratic nature of the internet has always been a marketing pitch.’ Yasha Levine on the military origins of the internet, on data modelling and technocratic government, and why the Cambridge Analytica scandal was good for Facebook.

Cover for: Socialism in one apartment complex

Socialism in one apartment complex

Historian Yuri Slezkine in conversation with ‘Rīgas Laiks’ editor Uldis Tirons

Moscow’s House on the Embankment was home to many of the first generation of Russian revolutionaries. Historian Yuri Slezkine, who has written the definitive account of the building, describes how it embodied the lives, hopes and fate of the Soviet project and its elite.

Cover for: Off the rails

A 30-hour train journey from Vienna to Moscow offers the chance to connect with the Russian past: contraband, bribery and all. Alexei Korolyov returns to the place of his birth.

Cover for: How (and why) I still remain a Czech and a Slovak. A 2018 afterword

Fifty years ago, Warsaw Pact forces led by the Red Army invaded Czechoslovakia. The socialist reforms of the Prague Spring were suppressed and Czechoslovakia was subjected to more than 20 years of stultifying ‘normalization’ under Soviet occupation. Revisiting his essay of 10 years ago, Ukrainian writer Mykola Riabchuk explains why his solidarity with the victims endures.

Cover for: Stalin’s continuing, disputed legacy

Stalin’s continuing, disputed legacy

Surveying Russia’s geography of difficult pasts

The memory of Stalin’s Terror is now receiving more attention in Russia than at any time since the 1980s. However, the scope of the debate needs to be widened still further, argues Daria Khlevnyuk.

Cover for: The feminist moment

The feminist cause is the cause of civilization and, at the same time, is now a cultural trend, writes Aloma Rodríguez. She calls on us to embrace its heterogeneity: there is – and should be – room for many different points of view to co-exist.

Cover for: Imprisoned in Russia

Oleg Sentsov’s hunger strike has reached a critical stage. Sentsov is calling for the release of all Ukrainians imprisoned in Russia on political grounds. The human rights initiative OVD-Info, in collaboration with the Memorial Centre, has compiled documentation on the 88 prisoners, most of whom are from Crimea.

Cover for: Social control 4.0? China’s Social Credit Systems

China’s digital Social Credit Systems operate a form of gamified control, rewarding users while rating them according to online and offline behaviour. By 2020, the Chinese government plans to introduce a nationwide system. Western observers are appalled, but are our own social media essentially all that different?

Cover for: Platforms are not neutral

Platforms are not neutral

Online debate and the rules of interaction

Critique of social media tends to focus on the content of online discourse, particularly the impacts of fake news and hate speech. But how do social media platforms themselves determine interaction, and how can users adapt to default functionalities in the interests of constructive debate?

Cover for: Is democracy doomed to lose its liberal core?

The ties between liberalism and democracy are under strain, challenged by self-styled illiberal ideologues from Budapest to Washington DC, and by the liberal-economic but undemocratic example of China. Romanian economist Daniel Dăianu makes the case for liberalism, and why it is worth fighting for if democracy is to thrive.

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