Native Americans have long been beloved in Hungary, where ‘Indians’ stand for what is real, endangered and exceptional. Viktor Orbán has used the trope to channel demographic anxiety and bolster his anti-migrant rhetoric, but it could also spell trouble for his politics of fear.
Nationalism, anti-liberalism and ultra-conservatism mark the political discourse in Central Europe today. What was once referred to as the ‘kidnapped West’ now seems to imitate its former captor. Jacques Rupnik seeks causes for the decline of the liberal consensus in Central Europe after 1989, following the trajectories of some of its major political thinkers.
The Czech Republic elects a new chamber of deputies on 20-21 October. The ANO party of Andrej Babiš, a billionaire businessman, is leading the polls; meanwhile, President Miloš Zeman gladly accepts the sobriquet ‘the Czech Trump’. In an article from the landmark 50th edition of Eurozine partner journal Transit, Jiří Přibáň explores what is going on.
Lost in transition? Ukraine and Europe since 1989
Throughout its recent political upheavals, Ukraine has looked to Europe as a beacon of liberal democracy. Yet Europe has been unwilling to reciprocate, as it did with other countries in the socialist bloc. This has held back not only Ukrainian development, argues Andrii Portnov.
What has the empire ever done for us?
Imperialism gets a bad press these days, and with good reason. But not all empires are alike, and not all are a disaster for the people governed by them. Steven Beller says central Europe is still struggling to recognise the benefits of the Habsburg Empire, and suggests its demise may hold lessons for the EU.