Jessie Labov (2019)

Transatlantic Central Europe. Contesting Geography and Redefining Culture beyond the Nation

Verlag CEU Press
Erscheinungsort Plymouth
Seitenzahl(en) 230
Sprache Englisch

ISBN: 978-615-5053-29-0

The concept of "Central Europe" has receded as a political and intellectual project, and the term has lost most of the weight it had in the 1980s and early 1990s. Proponents of a distinct cultural profile of this group of countries—all now involved in the process of Transatlantic integration—used "Central European" as an alternative for the geo-political label of Eastern Europe.

This book discusses the transnational set of practices connecting journals with other media in the mid-1980s that disseminated the idea of Central Europe simultaneously in East and West. The author employs a range of new methods, including GIS-mapping visualization, repositioning the political-cultural journal as one central node of a much larger cultural system.

What happened to the philosophy that "Central Europe" once evoked? In the early years of the transition era, the liberal humanist perspective shared by Havel, Konrád, Kundera, and Michnik was quickly replaced by an economic liberalism that evolved into neoliberal policies and practices. The author follows the trajectories of the concept into the present day, identifying its material and intellectual traces in the postcommunist landscape. She explores how the current usage of transnational, web-based media follows the logic and practice of an earlier, "dissident" generation of writers.

(From the publisher's website.)