The ideological bedrock of the postsocialist contemporary
dissent, and its strategies of resistance developed under late socialism. It is the dissident milieux, the “parallel poleis,” and the “second” cultures of late socialism that served as new containers, but also as the lid, for postsocialist cultural reforms.
This chapter turns its attention to “antipolitics,” a word for what is seen as the dominant form of the resistance of East-Central European intellectuals to socialist totalitarianism. It will argue that “antipolitics” should not only be regarded as the main oppositional strategy and force
A necessity … is precisely what politics is not. In
fact, it begins where the realm of material necessity and physical brute
Hannah Arendt , The Promise of Politics
The previous two chapters have considered
Arendt's work as contributing to a biopolitical lens with which we
Famine” Revisited: Band
Aid and the Antipolitics of Celebrity Humanitarian
Action ’, Disasters
37 : 1 ,
61 – 79 .
( 2016 ), ‘ Tensions in UN Information
Management: Security, Data and Human Rights Monitoring in Darfur,
Sudan ’, Journal of Human Rights
Practice , 8 : 1
Frédéric Le Marcis, Luisa Enria, Sharon Abramowitz, Almudena-Mari Saez, and Sylvain Landry B. Faye
Karthala , pp.
123 – 45 ).
( 1994 ), The Anti-Politics Machine.
‘Development’, Depoliticization, and Bureaucratic Power in
Lesotho ( Minneapolis and London :
University of Minnesota
( 2016 ), ‘ Dozens Feared
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.
4 Procedural violence
Listen – there's no war that will end all wars.
Haruki Murakami, Kafka on the Shore
The biopolitical anti-politics of modernity
is a dubious form of politics for Arendt, one that has ceased to have meaning,
beyond meaninglessness, once it becomes nothing more than ‘a necessary evil
for sustaining the life of humanity
Stirner, anarchy, subjectivity and the art of living
Lived poetry: Stirner, anarchy, subjectivity
and the art of living1
At the heart of the new anarchism(s) there lies a concern with developing a whole
new way of being in and acting upon the world.2 Contemporary revolutionary
anarchism is not merely interested in effecting changes in socioeconomic relations or dismantling the State, but in developing an entire art of living, which is
simultaneously anti-authoritarian, anti-ideological and antipolitical. The development of a distinctively anarchist savoir-vivre is a profoundly
Hannah Jones, Yasmin Gunaratnam, Gargi Bhattacharyya, William Davies, Sukhwant Dhaliwal, Emma Jackson, and Roiyah Saltus
population consider how some attempts to address a diversity of audiences
can be met with scepticism, anxiety or indifference note how, despite amplified expressions of anti-migrant sentiment
across public life, the anti-migrant performances of government are viewed
with suspicion and re-interpreted through a popular scepticism influenced by
a broader culture of ‘anti-politics’. 1
The key question
class identity that developed a cultural capital that moved individual perceptions and horizons to
a new level.
The band’s version of anarchism, based on a DIY philosophy and individual responsibility, moulded a new and influential anti-political response to
the post-consensus landscape. The band posited a position that went against
organised politics with a mantra of ‘There is no authority but yourself ’ that
referenced anarchism, humanism, poetry and transcendentalism. They put
forward a set of ideas that had been evident before in various types of literature
Looking back at the 2017 presidential and parliamentary elections
, redistributive or regulatory political issues: the extraordinary climate of anti-politics produced a side-lining of the discussion of major issues of policy, a phenomenon that attracted interest and anxiety in foreign capitals. The deep unpopularity of President Hollande and the governing Socialists left little space for a defence of the 2012–17 mandate and the contradictory debate that this supposed. Moreover, even the European issue was blurred by the inconsistent positions adopted by Le Pen, Fillon, Hamon and Mélenchon. The FN's position on leaving the euro divided the