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Beyond Cold War Linearities: Entangled Histories and Interactive Ideas

International Conference

9-10 December 2009

OSA Archivum,
Arany János utca 32,
1051, Budapest


The twentieth anniversary of the 1989 regime change has inspired debate about Communist legacies and the impact of the Cold War on transition in Eastern Europe. Much of this debate has focused on either the agents that contributed to its demise or an analysis of the transition as a struggle for European (re)integration. In both cases the destinies of former Communist countries are subjected to linear narratives that converge towards a vision of teleological (self-)liberation. But paradoxically this keen interest in the past met with a great deal of local epistemological reticence when it came down to the question of applied research and recent history. This can be correlated to a paucity of meta-reflections on Cold War Studies paradigms and a difficulty of gaining access to archival records of Cold War propaganda. A case in point is that of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, which continues to stir up sentiment but remains underexplored due to enduring trauma and the inability to access source material.

By bringing together the history of ideas, symbolic interactionism, social history and media anthropology, the conference seeks to create an interdisciplinary framework for the study of a period characterized by complex intellectual mobility, the intricate interplay of fantasies about the “other”, societal accommodation, generational change and conceptual imbrications between Eastern European traditions and Western cultural and political models.

The conference is organized by the International Alternative Culture Center in cooperation with OSA Archivum at CEU, CRC CEU, the CEU Departments of History and IRES and within the framework of the OSI-HESP ReSET “Alternative Culture Beyond Borders: the Past and Present of the Arts and Media in the Context of Globalization”

Organizers: Karl Hall, Irina Papkov, Ioana Toma, and Olga Zaslavskaya

Program - Biographies - Abstracts

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