română/ bucurești/ cluj/ iași/ sibiu/ Cluj - Culture and Politics of Crisis

Debate, book launch and inauguration of Cluj space

On the occasion of opening the new Cluj space (Sámuel Brassai st., no. 5) and Tact publishing house are inviting you to participate to the public debate on the topic

Culture and Politics of Crisis

Boris Buden (Professor, Faculty of Arts and Design, Bauhaus University, Weimar)
G. M. Tamás (Researcher, Philosophy Institute, Hungarian Academy of Sciences, Budapest)

The discussion will be moderated by:
Alex Cistelecan
Veronica Lazăr

The debate will be preceded by the launching of the Romanian translation of Boris Buden’s volume Zone of Transition: On the End of Post-Communism (Tact Publishing House, 2012)

Costi Rogozanu
(Writer and journalist, CriticAtac & Voxpublica, Bucharest)
Gabriel Troc
(Professor, Faculty of Sociology, „Babeş-Bolyai” University, Cluj-Napoca)

The event will take place on the 5th of November 2012, 6.00 PM, at the Cluj space, Sámuel Brassai st., no. 5, Cluj-Napoca.


Culture is back. But its role has changed. While the conservatives have always talked about contrasting societies, whose cultural differences made them incompatible to one another and, some of them, structurally unsuited for democracy, the neoliberal practice and discourse deliberately ignored this irreducible cultural pluralism as irrelevant for its universal economic policies: after all, in its view, no collectivity is too savage for some structural adjustments, no tribe too backward for privatizing its resources, no human being too indifferent towards the stock market.

But the present global crisis has turned things around: in the attempt to save the very impersonal and natural economic system, culture, with all its essentialist plethora of differences, is summoned back to life and granted a crucial role. The social explanation passes lately from numbers to metaphors, from ratings to poetry. Lack of discipline, indolence and immorality are nowadays just as many reasons for the structural crisis of capitalism.

In this new context, the East of Europe, which until the crisis was in danger of falling into irrelevance, just as much as it was supposed to fall in line, even if through a painful ‘transition’, with the Western normalcy, assumes a new importance. Its cultural pedigree, which until recently was being viewed as merely a secondary detail, a local charm incapable of hindering the European integration, is reified again and singled out as the main obstacle of the Western system’s encounter with its ideal image: the Balkanic corruption, the Greek laziness, the Hungarian fascism, the Russian authoritarianism, the Romanian mendacity, even when true, are falsified in the Western’s discourse as just as many causes of its own capitalist crisis. And the more Europe is trying to externalize its internal contradictions to the cultural backwardness of the East, the more it resembles its Balkanic haunting specter.

The Culture and Politics of Crisis is part of the project Fiction, Rhetoric and Facts developed by

Additional informations concerning this project can be obtained from its coordinator, Attila Tordai-S (tel.: 0040 745 182 672; e-mail: was established in 2012 at the initiative of ERSTE Foundation, becoming the fifth member of, a network of independent, non-profit organizations from Austria, Czech Republic, Hungary and Slovak Republic. has the particularity of being itself a network that is active in three permanent spaces in Iaşi, Cluj and Bucharest. Covering a wide spectre of activities, experimenting different working and collaboration approaches, wishes to establish itself as an innovative platform dedicated to the contemporary art.

Founded and coordinated by a group of graduates from the Faculty of Philosophy Cluj, Tact Publishing House is a cultural institution supported by the advertising agency Imagine TACT. Directed towards the publication of contemporary authors that have given important contributions in social sciences (philosophy, political theory, sociology, historical studies), Tact has developed so far five collections containing several important titles for the sphere of critical thinking.,