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Neoliberalism, Hedonism and the Dying Public

Reclaiming Political Agency through the Exercise of Courage

Grant M. Sharratt and Erik Wisniewski

Abstract

While the pursuit of hedonism is legitimated by neoliberal governmentality, its disciplining and isolating forces prevent individuals from being fulfilled by their pursuit of pleasure. Concomitantly, this hedonism (pursuing pleasure to avoid pain) causes individuals to withdraw from public political life. In this article we argue that, instead of attempting to pursue pleasure through the experience of material comfort, individuals ought to orient themselves towards membership in substantive political associations. Further, we argue that it is through such membership that one can attain genuine fulfilment, while simultaneously reclaiming agency, both on individual and collective terms. Though individuals must be willing to take on the risk of pain, their membership in substantive political associations provides genuine fulfilment, while also allowing for the construction of new worlds through political action.

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Populism

The Timeline of a Concept

Juan Francisco Fuentes

Abstract

The concept of populism has generated endless controversy marked by both the contrasting political feelings it conveys and a particular problem of definition. This article—based on political speeches, academic literature, and relevant online sources, such as Google Ngram Viewer, catalogs of great libraries, and digital archives of newspapers—adopts a pragmatic approach to the concept throughout its history, from the moment when the noun appeared in North American political life in the late nineteenth century until the most recent “populist moment” in response to the economic crisis that started in 2008. The study of its changing meanings shows, however, some elements of continuity that make sense of what Margaret Canovan defined as “a notoriously vague term.”

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Representative Government in the Dutch Provinces

The Controversy over the Stadtholderate (1705–1707) and Simon van Slingelandt

Bert Drejer

Abstract

This article reconsiders the way political representation was understood in the early modern Netherlands by focusing on the contemporary contribution of Simon van Slingelandt. His views of the representative nature of the government of the Dutch Republic were deeply polemical when he developed them, but went on to have a profound influence on the later literature and are notably sustained in modern histories of the subject. The best way to nuance the view of political representation our historiography has inherited from Van Slingelandt is by returning to the earlier views he set out to discredit. By examining both views, I thus hope to shed some new light on the representative nature of early modern Dutch government.

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Annabel Brett, Fabian Steininger, Tobias Adler-Bartels, Juan Pablo Scarfi, and Jan Surman

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Professor Anna Stilz and Interviewed by Dr Christine Hobden

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“The 1990s Wasn't Just a Time of Bandits; We Feminists Were Also Making Mischief!”

Celebrating Twenty Years of Feminist Enlightenment Projects in Tver’

Julie Hemment and Valentina Uspenskaya

Abstract

In this forum, we reflect on the genesis and history of the Tver’ Center for Women's History and Gender Studies—its inspiration and the qualities that have enabled it to flourish and survive the political changes of the last twenty years, as well as the unique project of women educating women it represents. Inspired by historical feminist forebears, it remains a hub of intergenerational connection, inspiring young women via exposure to lost histories of women's struggle for emancipation during the prerevolutionary and socialist periods, as well as the recent postsocialist past. Using an ethnographic account of the center's twentieth anniversary conference as a starting point, we discuss some of its most salient and distinguishing features, as well as the unique educational project it represents and undertakes: the center's origins in exchange and mutual feminist enlightenment; its historical orientation (women educating [wo]men in emancipation history); and its commitment to the postsocialist feminist “East-West” exchange.

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Janet Elise Johnson and Mara Lazda

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Between Trauma and Resilience

A Transnational Reading of Women's Life Writing about Wartime Rape in Germany and Bosnia and Herzegovina

Agatha Schwartz and Tatjana Takševa

Abstract

This article discusses the personal narratives (both published and personal interviews collected for the purpose of this study) of female survivors of wartime rape in post–World War II Germany and postconflict Bosnia and Herzegovina. The authors examine how the women succeed in finding their words both for and beyond the rupture caused by the rapes through examples of life writing that challenge the dominant masculinist historical narrative of war created for ideological reasons and for the benefit of the nation-state. Using theories of trauma and insights by feminist scholars and historians, the authors argue that a transnational reading of survivors’ accounts from these very different geopolitical and historical contexts not only shows multiple points of mutual influence, but also how these narratives can make a significant contribution, both locally and globally, when it comes to revisiting how wartime rape is memorialized, and how lessons learned from the two contexts can be relevant and applicable in other situations of armed conflict as well.

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Maria Bucur, Alexandra Ghit, Ayşe Durakbaşa, Ivana Pantelić, Rochelle Goldberg Ruthchild, Elizabeth A. Wood, Anna Müller, Galina Goncharova, Zorana Antonijević, Katarzyna Sierakowska, Andrea Feldman, Maria Kokkinou, Alexandra Zavos, Marija M. Bulatović, Siobhán Hearne, and Rayna Gavrilova

Cristina A. Bejan, Intellectuals and Fascism in Interwar Romania: The Criterion Association, Cham, Switzerland: Palgrave, 2019, 323 pp., €74.89 (hardback), ISBN 978-3-030-20164-7.

Chiara Bonfiglioli, Women and Industry in the Balkans: The Rise and Fall of the Yugoslav Textile Sector, London: I. B. Tauris, 2020, 232 pp., £85 (hardback), ISBN: 978-1-78533-598-3.

Aslı Davaz, Eşitsiz kız kardeşlik, uluslararası ve Ortadoğu kadın hareketleri, 1935 Kongresi ve Türk Kadın Birliği (Unequal sisterhood, international and Middle Eastern women's movements, 1935 Congress and the Turkish Women's Union), İstanbul: Türkiye İş Bankası, 2014, 892 pp., with an introduction by Yıldız Ecevit, pp. xxi–xxviii; preface by the author, pp. xxix–xlix, TL 42 (hardcover), ISBN: 978-605-332-296-2.

Biljana Dojčinović and Ana Kolarić, eds., Feministički časopisi u Srbiji: Teorija, aktivizam i umetničke prakse u 1990-im i 2000-im (Feminist periodicals in Serbia: Theory, activism, and artistic practice in the 1990s and 2000s), Belgrade: Faculty of Philology, University of Belgrade, 2018, 370 pp., price not listed (paperback), ISBN: 978-86-6153-515-4.

Melanie Ilic, ed., The Palgrave Handbook of Women and Gender in Twentieth-Century Russia and the Soviet Union, London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2018, 572 pp., $239 (e-book) ISBN: 978-1-137-54904-4; ISBN: 978-1-137-54905-1.

Luciana M. Jinga, ed., The Other Half of Communism: Women's Outlook, in History of Communism in Europe, vol. 8, Bucharest: Zeta Books, 2018, 348 pp., USD 40 (paperback), ISBN: 978-606-697-070-9.

Teresa Kulawik and Zhanna Kravchenko, eds., Borderlands in European Gender Studies: Beyond the East-West Frontier, New York: Routledge, 2020, 264 pp., $140.00 (hardback), ISBN: 978-0-367-25896-2.

Jill Massino, Ambiguous Transitions: Gender, the State, and Everyday Life in Socialist and Postsocialist Romania, New York: Berghahn Books, 2019, 466 pp., USD 122 (hardback), ISBN: 978-1-785-33598-3.

Gergana Mircheva, (A)normalnost i dostap do publichnostta: Socialno-institucionalni prostranstva na biomedicinskite discursi v Bulgaria (1878–1939) ([Ab]normality and access to publicity: Social-institutional spaces of biomedicine discourses in Bulgaria [1878–1939]), Sofia: St. Kliment Ohridski University Press, 2018, 487 pp., BGN 16 (paperback), ISBN: 978-954-07-4474-2.

Milutin A. Popović, Zatvorenice, album ženskog odeljenja Požarevačkog kaznenog zavoda sa statistikom (1898) (Prisoners, the album of the women's section of Požarevac penitentiary with statistics, 1898), edited by Svetlana Tomić, Belgrade: Laguna, 2017, 333 pp., RSD 894 (paperback), ISBN: 978-86-521-2798-6.

Irena Protassewicz, A Polish Woman's Experience in World War II: Conflict, Deportation and Exile, edited by Hubert Zawadzki, with Meg Knott, translated by Hubert Zawadzki, London: Bloomsbury Academic, 2019, xxv pp. +257 pp., £73.38 (hardback), ISBN: 978-1-3500-7992-2.

Zilka Spahić Šiljak, ed., Bosanski labirint: Kultura, rod i liderstvo (Bosnian labyrinth: Culture, gender, and leadership), Sarajevo and Zagreb: TPO Fondacija and Buybook, 2019, xii +213 pp., no price listed (paperback), ISBN: 978-9926-422-16-5.

Gonda Van Steen, Adoption, Memory and Cold War Greece: Kid pro quo?, University of Michigan Press, 2019, 350 pp., $85.00 (hardback), ISBN: 978-0-472-13158-7.

Dimitra Vassiliadou, Ston tropiko tis grafis: Oikogeneiakoi desmoi kai synaisthimata stin astiki Ellada (1850–1930) (The tropic of writing: Family ties and emotions in modern Greece [1850–1930]), Athens: Gutenberg, 2018, 291 pp., 16.00 € (paperback), ISBN: 978-960-01-1940-4.

Radina Vučetić, Coca-Cola Socialism: Americanization of Yugoslav Culture in the Sixties, English translation by John K. Cox, Budapest: Central European University Press, 2018, 334 pp., €58.00 (paperback), ISBN: 978-963-386-200-1.

Nancy M. Wingfield, The World of Prostitution in Late Imperial Austria, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2017, xvi +272 pp., $80 (hardback), ISBN: 978-0-19880-165-8.

Anastasia Lakhtikova, Angela Brintlinger, and Irina Glushchenko, eds., Seasoned Socialism: Gender and Food in Late Soviet Everyday Life, Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2019, xix +373 pp., $68.41(hardback), ISBN: 978-0-253-04095-4.

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Book Reviews

Hegelianisms without Metaphysics?

David James, Bahareh Ebne Alian, and Jean Terrier