At a meeting on the topic of the Northern Dimension partnerships on October 17 at the Finnish embassy in Stockholm, the many ambassadors and other dignitaries present in the audience proved to be inspired partners in dialogue, providing both critical questions and analytical overviews of policy and funding instruments in the northern part of Europe.
Baltic Worlds was one of the organizers of the seminar on the breakup of the Soviet Union during the “Global Week” at the University of Gothenburg in November. Here a report from the seminar 2Armageddon Averted: Insiders’ Reports from the Dissolution of the Soviet Union".
This fall, it was Helsinki’s turn to host this year's Yuri Lotman Symposium, whose theme was “The Writer and Power.” About forty Slavists from seven countries – Finland, Estonia, Russia, Sweden, Germany, the United States, and Israel – met over the space of three days to discuss this utterly inexhaustible topic. A number of fascinating cross-pollinations were among the most interesting outcomes.
Trying to understand where post-Soviet Russia is going seems to be a matter of understanding how the society is redefining itself: contradictory pictures are circulating of what precisely Russia and “Russianness” are. The official picture of a united and multicultural Russia is being challenged from several directions.
On June 15–17, 2011, the Advanced Cultural Studies Institute of Sweden (ACSIS) organized its biennial conference, this year dedicated to “Current Issues in European Cultural Studies”. This report highlights some of the issues that were discussed at the panel session “East European Cultural Studies: The ‘New’ Europe”, chaired by Professor Irina Sandomirskaya of CBEES.
Privatizations in states with no actual market economy obviously become legislative matters. For instance, matters related to property rights may need to be re-regulated. The role of EU law in privatization was brought up at the conference. The law does not regulate privatizations, but contains a great deal on liberalization, which in turn affects privatization. Matters related to the alignment of legislation have made law more interesting for all of us who usually categorize legislation among the restrictions.
Life and work, world literature and Soviet history. Exploring the moral necessity of Varlam Shalamov
During two scorching hot days in the middle of June, a diverse assembly of scholars from Russia and beyond converged in Moscow in search of answers to two questions: What is Varlam Shalamov? And why do we need him?
“Why is there no happiness in the East?” was the, according to many, provocative title of a conference put on by CBEES and Södertörn University September 8–10 of this year. The organizers of the conference, Teresa Kulawik, Renata Ingbrant and Youlia Gradskova, wanted to bring together feminist scholars for a discussion about conditions facing feminism in the East and in the West after the Berlin Wall, as well as the role of the EU and politics in the development of feminism.
Natalia Zubarevich, Department of Geography, Moscow State University, is keynote speaker at Baltic Worlds Annual Roundtable: Market Reform and Socio-Economic Change in Russia, October 6. She notes a growing polarization between people and regions. Modernization is necessary.
This year’s Baltic Sea Festival, held for nine days in late summer in Stockholm and focusing on music and the environment, was true to form with Esa-Pekka Salonen at the helm. Not only that: the thematic threads were unusually well intertwined.