As if Communism Never Happened:
Culture and Politics in the 1980s and Beyond
Presented by The Harriman Institute at Columbia University in association with the Polish Cultural Institute in New York, Romanian Cultural Institute in New York, and Austrian Cultural Forum.
Registration for this event is required. Registration Email
This Sneak Peek at Performing Revolution in Eastern Europe brings together intellectuals to discuss the role of the performing arts in the region in the wake of the revolutions of 1989. What were the driving forces illuminating and directing intellectual and cultural dynamics in Eastern Europe in the 1980s? How have the events of 1989 changed the role of artistic communities in shaping society and politics? How have communist-era legacies influenced current intellectual and cultural practices? These are some of the questions to be tackled during the two-hour interactive panel.
This special pre-festival event is a preview of a larger symposium scheduled for February 26-27, 2010. Both are organized as part of Performing Revolution in Central and Eastern Europe, a performing arts festival marking the 20th anniversary of the fall of Communism in Central and Eastern Europe, presented by The New York Public Library for the Performing Arts in partnership with key New York City cultural organizations and academic institutions, November 2009 - March 2010.
Sneak Peek participants include: Jeffrey Goldfarb, Professor of Sociology at the New School for Social Research, author of eight books, including The Politics of Small Things: The Power of the Powerless in Dark Times (2006) and The Persistence of Freedom: The Sociological Interpretation of Polish Student Theater (1980); Elzbieta Matynia, Associate Professor and Director of the Transregional Center for Democratic Studies at the New School for Social Research, author of Performative Democracy (2009), and Furnishing Democracy at the end of the Century: Negotiating Transition at the Polish Roundtable & Others (2001); Robert Misik, Austrian journalist and author of eight books, including Politics of Paranoia (2009), two-time winner of the Bruno Kreisky Prize for the Political Book, regular contributor to the Austrian periodicals Der Standard, Profil, and Falter, and the Berlin-based Die Tageszeitung; and Professor Nic Ularu, writer, director, Head of Design at the University of South Carolina's Department of Theater and Dance, and one of Romania's most important set designers in the 80s and 90s. The panel will be moderated by Bradley Abrams, who has taught modern Eastern European history in Columbia University's Department of History and served for several years as the Associate Director of the Harriman Institute; he is currently President of the Czechoslovak Studies Association.