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The institutionalization of artistic practice in Eastern Europe after 1989

The postsocialist contemporary intervenes, from the historical perspective of Eastern Europe, in a wider conversation about “contemporary art.” It departs from, and revolves around, a concrete case in which a program called “for contemporary art” was assembled on the debris of the Berlin Wall by the Hungarian-American billionaire George Soros. The Soros Centers for Contemporary Art (SCCA) was a network of twenty art centers active during the 1990s in Eastern Europe. The book argues that this program played an important role in the actualization of the paradigm of contemporary art in the former bloc. The main goal of this study, however, is not to recreate the narrative but to take this Soros-funded art infrastructure as a critical point of inquiry in order to engage with key permutations occurring in art during the transition to capitalism. The book argues that with the implementation of Western art institutional models and norms by Soros, and other players after 1989, a radical departure takes place in the art of this region: a departure from an art that (officially at least) provided symbolic empowerment to the masses, toward an art that affirms the interests, needs, desires, and “freedom” of the private individual acting within the boundaries of the bourgeois civil society and the market. The book considers the “postsocialist contemporary” in a broader context of late twentieth-century political, economic, and cultural processes of (neo) liberalization, promoting and encouraging more critical historical materialist examinations of “contemporary art” – the dominant aesthetic paradigm of late-capitalist market democracy.

Sean Healy
Victoria Russell

Europe are seeking to supplant white people with immigrants from the Middle East and Africa ( Holthouse, 2017 ). YouTube comments ( Gefira, 2016c ) on it illustrate the extreme conclusions drawn by some of its viewers: ‘When will European people rise up and fight this before their continent is destroyed? It needs to happen soon for the sake of your kids and grandkids lives’, ‘All funded by George Soros, the devil in disguise’ and

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
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Octavian Esanu

The Postsocialist Contemporary intervenes, from the perspective of Eastern Europe, in a wider conversation about contemporary art. It departs from, and revolves around, a concrete historical case in which a program specifically dedicated to “contemporary art” was quickly assembled on the debris of the Berlin Wall by the Hungarian-American billionaire George Soros. The Soros Centers for Contemporary Art (SCCA) was a network of twenty art centers active during the 1990s, which – as this book argues – has played an

in The postsocialist contemporary
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How Eastern Europe got the idea of contemporary art
Octavian Esanu

, norms, and infrastructure for contemporary art, so that when Soros arrived (in the 1980s in Hungary, and then from the early 1990s in other parts of Eastern Europe) many of these artists and their archives and samizdats and tamizdats , their semi-official art periodicals and newsletters, their banned, prohibited, or tolerated art and networks of collaborators, their “parallel polis” and “second culture” and “antipolitical” art historical discourses and venues, had become the first and main beneficiaries of George Soros. By way of a rapid and intense series of

in The postsocialist contemporary
The impact of counter-terrorism policy on civil society in the EU
Scott N. Romaniuk
Ákos Baumgartner
, and
Glen M. E. Duerr

represented in statements by Fidesz officials … Or the other example with striking similarities is the Israeli one. The government definitely used the security and counterterrorism policy and frameworks like that. NGOs, especially George Soros

in Counter-terrorism and civil society
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Melodramatizing the Hungarian Holocaust
R. Barton Palmer

, it is important to note the rise of increasingly open anti-Semitism in the body politic presided over by Viktor Orbán since 2010. During the most recent election (2016), Orbán supporters printed leaflets bearing a photograph of Hungarian-American, Jewish financier, George Soros, with copy that identified him as an enemy of the country. These posters, as I saw myself during a visit to Budapest that year, were placed on sidewalks so that pedestrians would step on this image of the man's face. Even Donald Trump, in a rant targeting Central American asylum seekers

in The films of Costa-Gavras
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Pogroms, pillories and riots
Rebecca Pates
Julia Leser

with a depiction of George Soros, puppet master, manipulating Angela Merkel (see Figure 2.2 ). The government, in Waldstein’s view, is aiming to turn Germany into a land of diversity and heterogeneity and thereby perpetrating ‘acts of racism against its own people’, by turning Germany into an ethnic and religious melting pot. This is a coup d’état from above, argues Waldstein. Of course, resistance is the only recourse. In particular, as other far-right publicists argue, the government is waging battles in the East of the country in which ‘ethnic German

in The wolves are coming back
Richard Lapper

winning political power. The idea is highly contentious. Internationally, this perspective puts George Soros, the Rockefellers, the Council on Foreign Relations, the United Nations and the World Health Organization – as well as liberal leaders like Barack Obama and Angela Merkel – in the same camp as traditional labour movement types, the Chinese Communist Party and the more old-fashioned communist dictatorships still in charge in Cuba and North Korea. Carvalho contends that the liberal alliance in Brazil encompasses the country’s entire political establishment

in Beef, Bible and Bullets
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The ideological bedrock of the postsocialist contemporary
Octavian Esanu

contemporary art, dedicated to the relation between art and the open society: As the founder of The Open Society Fund and the Center for Contemporary Arts network, George Soros aims to support the emergence of a so-called “open society”: a liberal civil society based on the western model. The fundamental trait of that society is consciousness of the imperfection of human knowledge. From the consciousness of imperfection emerges constant preparedness and society's ability to rectify erroneous decisions. An

in The postsocialist contemporary
Shivdeep Grewal

his unreserved scorn, and, recalling Durkheim (1951), condemn his brother Michel inexorably to suicide.13 Pessimistic theses comparable with those of Houellebecq have been simplified and distilled into a popular philosophy by English historian of ideas John Gray (2002, 2004a). If the plaudits of liberal reviewers – from George Soros and Will Hutton to David Marquand and Ballard (a friend and admirer)14 – are anything to go by, Gray can lay claim to codifying the cultural mood in the wake of 9/11. More a gathering of mavericks than political movements, discernment is

in Habermas and European Integration (second edition)