The conference aims to examine the processes of politicization and political socialization in East Central Europe (ECE) between the 1840s and early 1990s. Mass politicization is a crucial concept in studying the long-term political, social, and cultural development of
modern societies. It is considered one of the fundamental constitutive phenomena of modern state formation in Europe. The issue of political participation of the masses is not connected with the establishment of democracies only. This phenomenon needs to be examined in the context of fascist and communist ideologies that presented themselves as mass political movements aiming at giving voice and power to the silenced and oppressed majority. The conference seeks to overcome the existing chronological fragmentation of the topic. Scholars are invited to analyse the cycles and dynamics of politicization and de-politicization processes in the context of geopolitical discontinuities in East Central Europe. The primary objective is to discuss social, economic, political, confessional and cultural factors of political socialization and identify trends of continuities and discontinuities of the broader strata of the ECE population during the period beginning in the 1840s and ending in the early 1990s.
The preferred topics may include, but are not limited to:
- Epistemological and theoretical challenges: new perspectives on the concepts of political awareness, politicization, political socialization and related phenomena.
- The agents of politicization, the institutional basis, the communication channels, and instruments of politicization.
- The situations and places where politicization and political socialization might have occurred with greater or lesser intensity and potential for success.
- The “counter” processes of de-politicization and re-politicization.
- How did political actions, behaviour, attitudes, and values adapt to the change of the political regime from a democratic to an authoritative one?
- Politicization and the formation of public space. Impact of mass politics on the appearance of cities (urbanization, arrangement of public space, political symbolism).
- Effect of political socialization in the field of culture (formation of engaged art seeking to activate society, selection of theatrical repertoire, role of museums and other memory institutions).
- Case studies of various roles, experiences, and agencies of various types of actors: understandings of politics, becoming political, turning an activist, acting as an agent etc.
Proposals of a maximum of 500 words, accompanied by a short bio, should be submitted by 31 May 2023, to one of the following addresses: firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com.
Applicants will be informed by 15 June 2023 of the acceptance of their proposal. The conference will be held in Bratislava.