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Online seminar "Children and childhood in the discourse and political practices of populists in Central and Eastern Europe"

Nov 11, 2021 | 11:00 AM - 01:00 PM


The institutional partnership project between the Institute for East European Studies of the Free University Berlin (FUB) and the National Research University Higher School of Economics (HSE University) supported by the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation (AvH) is inviting you to attend the series of online seminars "Varieties of populism in East and West".

The theme of the second workshop will be "Children and childhood in the discourse and political practices of populists in Central and Eastern Europe".

The guest speaker - Mikołaj Rakusa-Suszczewski – PhD, an Associate Professor at Centre for Europe, University of Warsaw. Sociologist and political philosopher; graduate of the Institute of Sociology at University of Warsaw and Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales in Paris. Co-founder of the Social Movements Analysis Team Foundation (ZARS). Member of the International Sociological Association (ISA) and the Polish Sociological Association. He conducts research on the history of ideas, the theory of social movements, as well as socio-cultural changes in Europe, in particular the problems of political and economic populism. Author of many research projects, qualitative sociological surveys and numerous scientific articles published in Polish and Foreign Journals. He recently published a book: The Shadow of Radicalism.

Main theses of the speaker:

In Central and Eastern Europe populist regimes are attracting attention as a result of the traumatic legacy of communism, the subsequent overburdening reforms and exhausting systemic transformation, resurgence of ever-lurking nationalism, regional conservatism, parochialism and cultural chauvinism, and/or as an example of the structural shortcomings of young democracies at the borders of civilization. The subject literature also indicates numerous and universal elements of populist governments, present as well in this part of Europe. Without prejudging the aptness and strength of these various concepts and arguments, I will like to include in these wideranging themes a particular issue that absorbs conservative populists, namely “childhood” and “children”. While the problem of children in politics has already received numerous interpretations, the importance of childhood in the right-wing populist discourse and politics has so far remained an issue discussed only occasionally. Yet, children play an important and specific role in the right-wing populist superstructure – they constitute an illusory picture of the nation, an allegory of its renewal, as well as a convenient instrument for achieving political, ideological and propaganda goals. Attitudes towards children can be an important characteristic of populism as such, and should be taken into account in the research on this subject in Central and Eastern Europe.

Discussant – Dr. Olga Savinskaya, Department of Sociological Research Methods, Faculty of Social Sciences, HSE Moscow


Language: English

Date: 11th of November, 2021

Time: 13:00 PM Moscow Time Zone

Online Platform: MS Teams

We count with ca. 1.3 hours workshop duration. 

More information about the seminar series of FUB-HSE "Varieties of populism in East and West" on the HSE website or on Facebook.