Tag Archives: racism

“Your Security Terrorizes”: An Interview with Ana Ivasiuc

That is an alternative political project worth thinking about: how to replace security with solidarity? In this light, I am profoundly against using the word ‘security’ in progressive political activism. To claim that the security of the subaltern is important, too, is to be blind to the fact that the powerful and propertied can never take that claim seriously in a system built on the primacy of property and of capital. Continue reading →

Coronavirus and the racial regime in Slovakia: the state response to the Roma

In moments of heightened crisis, such as today’s, one of the first strategies of a state is to defer its pretense of universal social solidarity, directing its energies towards the social groups it prioritizes but normally cannot single out. This same tendency often leads to postponing of its efforts to negotiate difficult social, economic, and racial relations. In many states the diverse and conflicting nature of the populations gives way to rapidly consolidating sentiments of ethno-nationalism. The situation in Slovakia after the outbreak of the novel coronavirus is a painfully apt example. The country was am ..

The Enduring Racialization of the Roma and the Banality of Evil

The racialization/inferiorization of Roma has been normalized over centuries and supported by social structures. Therefore, instead of organizing public protest against such statements, we rather tacitly accept and even mainstream these violent discourses. In this sense, the racialization of Roma is not a novelty. However, the way it is framed in illiberal political discourse excludes any other point of view, even if comes from the independent judiciary. Continue reading →

Leviathan of Fear: the EU-Turkish border crisis spills over into Serbia

Racist patrols and protests are spreading in Serbia, as the far right seeks to exploit the migrant crisis for political gain, write AnjaIlić and Vladimir Unkovski-Korica. This is a significantly expanded version of an article first published onCounterfire. When news broke that Turkish–EU tensions in Syria had led to Ankara’s cynical decision to stop preventing migrants crossing the EU border on 27thFebruary, the Balkans as the main transit route between Turkey and the EU could not be unaffected. EU member Hungary has temporarily stopped taking asylum-seekers on the Serbian border, citing fears that migrants ..

Anti-Roma Riots in the Heart of Bulgaria: Racists against Inequality?

We are publishing this article in cooperation with the Serbo-Croatian web portal Bilten. In the “Offenders in Gabrovo!” Facebook group, natives of the eponymous Central Bulgarian town comment upon all sorts of irregularities: they lambaste the owner of a car parked on the wrong side of the street, mobilize to replace a broken lamp post, ridicule the municipality’s failed street disinfection campaign, announce a lost set of keys, and criticize irregular public transportation. With more than 25 000 members, roughly half the town’s population, the group serves as a messy sort of a citizen’s ass ..

Statement by LevFem Regarding the Latest Demolition of Roma Houses in Bulgaria: please circulate widely

Anti-Roma racism, ethnophobia, and prejudice have reached intolerable proportions in Bulgarian government, the Bulgarian public sphere, and Bulgarian society at large. LevFem stands in solidarity with our Roma sisters and brothers who are subjected to incessant daily racist abuse, harassment, violence, and dehumanization, and navigate countless forms of prejudice while surviving an increasingly hostile racist, ethnophobic, and xenophobic social environment. On January 9, Vice Prime Minister of Bulgaria Krasimir Karakachanov called bulldozers and began the demolition of informally-built Roma homes in the village o ..

Bulgaria (not) only for Bulgarians

Note from LeftEast editors: The article was originally published on dversia.net in Bulgarian on the 10.09.2017 At this year’s summit of G20, the newly elected French president Emanuel Macron stated that the problem with the slow economic development of Africa was civilizational. As an example, he noted that African women gave birth to 7-8 children, in which he saw a negative economic effect without accounting for its economic roots–the reason must be the “innate backwardness” of the people. Similarly, in Bulgaria the problem with the social and economic segregation of the Roma is viewed as civilizatio ..

In the Name of the Constitution: Ethnic Minorities and Technologies of Disenfranchisement in Bulgaria

Note from the editors: Starting next month Bulgaria will assume the presidency of the Council of the European Union. To acknowledge this momentous occasion, this month LeftEast will carry two texts by Jana Tsoneva analyzing the politics of contemporary Bulgaria. This article originally appeared in July on the Serbo-Croatian portal Bilten and is republished here with their generous permission. It is a habit of the lazy mind to associate only ex-Yugoslavia with ethnic conflicts, but in the late 1980s Bulgaria, too, was on the brink of an “ethnic war”. The post-1956 period regime was marked by the increase of ra ..

The Red and the Black: the Riddle of post-Soviet Racism

This text was originally published in Russian in the web-journal ReLevant: a Journal of Current Analysis. We are much obliged to Maria Brock for its English translation. Anyone who has crossed paths with Soviet immigrants in the West will have noticed the strange phenomenon of post-Soviet racism, which is all the stranger because the overwhelming majority of emigrants from the Soviet Union are “individuals of Jewish origin,” that is, people who not only faced quotidian and structural racism, but who also ended up fleeing from it. Dr N was pensively stirring his cappuccino, which had long gone cold. We were ..

Hungary: the Népszabadság Affair

Note from the LeftEast editors: Last Saturday employees of  Népszabadság  newspaper, the widest circulated daily in Hungary, found themselves locked out of their workplace and told they were no longer needed. On the  Népszabadság  editorial team facebook page the team team wrote: “Our first thought is that this is a coup. We will soon come back with more” after the newspaper’s website , stopped working , and invited the public to join them to demonstrate at Parliament later that day. They were joined by some 2,000 people. This article is translated into English for LeftEast by Lolo f ..