Standing up to the new machos
Index on Censorship 4/2019
Index on Censorship looks at machismo as a political category. Resisting the suffocation of dissent in the era of the internet means standing up ‘for the principles of freedom and democracy all the time, not just when they affect you’, comments editor-in-chief Rachael Jolley.
Eurozine review 1/2020
Ord & Bild 5/2019
Revista Crítica de Ciências Sociais 120 (2019)
Syn og Segn 4/2019
China’s head of state Xi Jinping is an ambiguous leader, combining a cosmopolitan image with the strongman’s traits, writes Jeffrey Wasserstrom. There is ‘Statesman Xi’, a leader of refined literary taste who stands for social harmony; and there is ‘Chairman Xi’, the head of the communist party, a ‘muscular nationalist who is a lot like members of today’s global crop of strongman leaders’. How can the statesman and the chairman coexist? As the success of leaders such as Viktor Orbán attests, today ‘one can be both an intellectual of sorts and intensely anti-intellectual’.
‘Tricky as the art of contemporary censorship may seem, plenty of modern despots with no apparent technical inclination are doing it brilliantly’, writes Rob Sears in his ironic ‘how-to’ of censorship. Taming the internet, creating a troll army, buying up the media and delegitimizing journalists is the way to go. Not even books, ‘those conveniently flammable things’, should be spared: ‘Just don’t forget to torch the Kindle versions as well’.
When sowing public distrust of journalism, Matteo Salvini ‘has been pushing at an open door’, writes Alessio Perrone. Fabricated quotes, clickbait headlines and hasty verification are widespread bad practices in the Italian media. While higher journalistic standards would not eliminate hostility towards the media, they would at least ‘make it harder for the media to be such an easy target for populists’.
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Published 15 January 2020
Original in English
First published by Eurozine
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