The Center Holds (Too Much)

When people praise or criticize the centralized planning of the Communist era in East-Central Europe, they focus most of their attention on the “planning” side. The chief vice – or virtue – of this system was its claim to replace the market with a state that could determine prices, dictate supply and demand, own much of the economy, and employ most of the citizens. The state, it turned...
read more

Them

In her book Oni (Them), the journalist Teresa Toranska profiled Poland’s hardcore Stalinists, what the Poles used to call beton or concrete. When the book came out in 1985, it became an underground classic. The world of the “true believers” was in its twilight years, and soon it would be extinguished altogether. But with her interviews, Toranska managed to convey how a small, Stalin-backed...
read more

Occupy Slovenia

The Occupy movement began in the United States – at a statue of a bull standing in the heart of Wall Street in New York City. It spread quite rapidly to other places around the country and around the world. In many locations, it built on or connected to pre-existing movements that had been working on questions of economic inequality for some time. But for many people, it was their introduction...
read more

The Politician

A crisis is a terrible thing to waste. Peter Peters returns as a ruthless politician in a full-length show that combines last year’s Fringe hit The Pundit with its thrilling sequel. “Deflates its target with a sharp satiric pin,” said The Washington Post of last year’s sold-out run. Written by John Feffer Directed by Doug Krehbel Starring Sean Coe as the politician, with Michael Crowley,...
read more

Confronting History

Germany, it seems, is in a constant process of debating its own history. In fact, there’s a word in German, historikerstreit, that means “the historians’ dispute.” It refers specifically to a debate at the end of the 1980s about the crimes of Nazi Germany, often in comparison to those of Stalin’s Soviet Union. But the word could just as easily refer to a number of other debates that...
read more