română/ bucurești/ cluj/ iași/ sibiu/

Szemkontakt II: Post-fascism, Biopolitics, Populism?

Authoritarian Capitalism in Central and Eastern Europe

Friday, 1 June 2018, 7 pm

tranzit. ro/ Cluj
Brassai Samuel St, no 5

Today the political landscape of Central and Eastern Europe is dominated by the anti-refugee, anti-woman, anti-minority, anti-Semitic etc. rhetoric and political practice of the neoconservative, neonationalist, or even neo- or post-fascist movements or parties. The authoritarian, right-wing populist capitalism of the region produces more and more precarious, socially and politically dispossessed non-citizens reduced to their bare life (the unemployed, immigrants, the poor, the homeless), who are criminalized and stigmatized as parasites on the body of a „work-based society”.

What are the causes rooted in global capitalism that contribute to this authoritarian, right-wing populist, post-fascist turn? What combination of national and transnational capital is at work in it? How can a biopolitical analysis be applied to this turn? Does the biopolitical production of social life necessarily imply the production of post-fascist violence? Would it make sense to elaborate a left-wing populism to counter right-wing populism?

Can we argue that the Orbán-regime, with various means (such as the hate campaign against refugees, and later against the civil and political opposition), institutes a continuous „state of exception” as the norm?

How can we incorporate an anti-biopolitical perspective in the praxis and strategies of the Hungarian and Romanian left-wing advocacy movements (movements that fight against the deprivation of social and political rights, such as housing rights), against the biopolitics of authoritarian capitalism?

These are the questions that we will discuss on the second offline debate of A szem journal, with the members of the Társadalomelméleti Műhely (Social Theory Research Group) from Budapest.

Participants: Attila Antal, Orsolya Bajusz, András Benke, Noémi Bíró, András Borbély, Virág Gegő, Zsolt Kapelner, Miklós Merényi M., Áron Szatmári, Attila Szigeti

Co-organizers: Politikatörténeti Intézet – Társadalomelméleti Műhely (Institute of Political History – Social Theory Research Group), Cluj