CS: Intellectuals and Politics in Eastern Europe

Timothy Olin's picture

In Eastern Europe, intellectuals oppose imperial or quasi-imperial rule, or criticize nation-states that fail to provide the satisfactions promised by sovereignty. They are regular targets of abuse from all sides, and from one another, but are also adept in defending themselves. The cliché goes that history is written by the winners, but the losers very often make a good showing. This course shall focus on the Warsaw, Budapest, Vienna, and Prague, and thus Polish, Hungarian, Austrian, Czech, and Jewish thinkers -- bearing in mind that these categories could and did overlap. As we situate the intelligentsia, we may find ourselves gaining a richer understanding of modern ideologies such as nationalism, socialism, and liberalism.