Category Archives: Interviews

Navalny’s Return and Left Strategy

Russia has had an eventful week and it’s not even finished. First, Alexey Navalny flew back to Moscow, then he was immediately arrested upon crossing the border, and the next day his team published a video illustrating Vladimir Putin’s own corruption and calling upon all citizens to come out to the streets against the government on January 23. What is the Russian left to think of all this? Navalny is certainly not its own, but should it stay away from the protests and the brewing political crisis? We asked Ilya Budraitskis, Ilya Matveev, and Kirill Medvedev, for their opinion. Ilya Budraitskis, Moscow-based h ..

Police Brutality in Albania: “The Revolt Seems Like Something That Was Waiting to Happen”

Although the shooting of an unarmed citizen can be considered an isolated event, there has been an increasing escalation of violence by the police in recent years. We, as activists of Organizata Politike, have witnessed it while protesting alongside chromium miners, oil refinery workers, and students. A very violent intervention by the police took place last year against the artists who were defending the National Theatre against demolition. This wave of repression also relates to a decision by the Ministry of Interior to send into early retirement more than 1,000 policemen from the older generation, replacing ..

Jihad, universalism, and the Left: A conversation with Darryl Li

Darryl Li’s recent historical ethnography of jihad fighters in 1990s Bosnia, The Universal Enemy, draws on the author’s legal background and anthropological training to connect the former Yugoslavia with the far-flung homes of the mujahideen and the US’s global carceral archipelago. Matan Kaminer of LeftEast spoke with Dr. Li about internationalism, cosmopolitanism, regionality and lessons for the Left. Continue reading →

Interview with George Caffentzis, political philosopher and autonomist Marxist

This interview with George Caffentzis (also featuring Silvia Federici) was conducted by Tinta Limón Ediciones, and is included in the Spanish language edition of In Letters of Blood and Fire: Work, Machines, and the Crisis of Capitalism (2020). Sebastián Touza and Ezequiel Gatto participated in the interview. Continue reading →

[INTERVIEW] From Internationalism to Postcolonialism: Literature & Cinema between the Second and the Third World

Note from LeftEast editors: A shortened version of Selim Nadi’s interview with Rossen Djagalov was published in Jacobin Magazine. Could there have been a Third World without the “Second”? Certainly, there could have been — but it would have looked very different. Most histories of these geopolitical blocs and their constituent societies and cultures are written in their relation to the West. Yet the interdependence of the Second and Third Worlds is evident not only from a common nomenclature but also from their near-simultaneous disappearance around 1990. Rossen Djagalov’s book From Internationa ..

Part 2: The Power of ‘Weak Actors’ and Decolonizing Socialist Architectural Histories after 1989

Part 2 of a two-part interview with Łukasz Stanek by Zoltán Ginelli. Transcribed and edited by Zoltán Ginelli. Part 1 you can read HERE. Łukasz Stanek is Senior Lecturer (Associate Professor) at the Manchester School of Architecture, The University of Manchester, UK. Stanek authoredHenri Lefebvre on Space: Architecture, Urban Research, and the Production of Theory(2011) and edited Lefebvre’s book Toward an Architecture of Enjoyment (2014). His latest book, Architecture in Global Socialism: Eastern Europe, West Africa, and the Middle East in the Cold War was published by Princeton University Press in 2020. C ..

INTERVIEW: Tamás Krausz: “Reconstructing Lenin” beyond the lies and distortions

Professor of Russian history at the University of Budapest, Tamás Krausz is the author of an intellectual biography of Lenin. In this interview, Krausz draws a portrait of the October Revolution and the beginning of the Soviet experience, rigorously showing the contemporary relevance of Lenin’s analyses, as well as their limits, without yielding to the simplifications and “superficial theories” that prevent us from understanding that founding event. Alex Anfruns: Your book “Reconstructing Lenin” defends the postulate that Lenin’s theoretical and political legacy continues to b ..

Looking Elsewhere: Weak Actors and Architecture on the Move in Global Socialism

Part 1 of a two-part interview with Łukasz Stanek by Zoltán Ginelli. Transcribed and edited by Zoltán Ginelli. Part 2 can be read HERE. Łukasz Stanek is Senior Lecturer (Associate Professor) at the Manchester School of Architecture, The University of Manchester, UK. Stanek authoredHenri Lefebvre on Space: Architecture, Urban Research, and the Production of Theory(2011) and edited Lefebvre’s book Toward an Architecture of Enjoyment (2014). His latest book, Architecture in Global Socialism: Eastern Europe, West Africa, and the Middle East in the Cold War was published by Princeton University Press in 2020. Cu ..

Why Globalise? 1989 in Eastern Europe and the Politics of History: Part III

In this three-part interview, conducted, transcribed and edited by Zoltán Ginelli, history professor James Mark talks about his latest book James Mark is a British Professor of History at the University of Exeter. His research focuses on the history and memory politics of state-socialism in East Central Europe from the perspective of broader global histories, transnational processes and comparative methods. In 2019, James finished working on two 5-year international research projects: 1989 After 1989: Rethinking the Fall of State Socialism in Global Perspective and Socialism Goes Global: Cold War Connections Bet ..

Why Globalise? 1989 in Eastern Europe and the Politics of History: Part II

In this three-part interview, conducted, transcribed and edited by Zoltán Ginelli, history professor James Mark talks about his latest book James Mark is a British Professor of History at the University of Exeter. His research focuses on the history and memory politics of state-socialism in East Central Europe from the perspective of broader global histories, transnational processes and comparative methods. In 2019, James finished leading two 5-year international research projects: 1989 After 1989: Rethinking the Fall of State Socialism in Global Perspective and Socialism Goes Global: Cold War Connections Betwee ..