TENSE event Culture, Propaganda and the Emergence of New States in Eastern Europe After the First World War

WiseEuropa attended following events of the TENSE project called “The Emergence of new states in Eastern Europe after the First World War: Lessons for all Europe” which took place on September 16, 2019, in Tallinn (Estonia) and on October 3, 2019, in Pori (Finland).

At Satakunta Museum in Pori, Finland, the 3rd of October 2019 was held the debate and the exhibition. As a leader of the project and consortium, WiseEuropa was delightful to display its exhibition organised by Adam Balcer, Foreign Policy Project Manager at WiseEuropa. Then, all of the guests discussed in the panel “Culture, Propaganda and the Emergence of New States in Eastern Europe After the First World War”. There were among the experts Anna Sivula (University of Turku), Iwona Reichardt (New Eastern Europe), Monika Kareniauskit (Vytautas Magnus University), Ilva Skulte (Riga Stradins University), Vlad Vernygora (Tallinn University of Technology) and Ville Soimetsa (University of Turku).

The Pori event, that was part of the project TENSE, focuses on the cultural aspects of the emergence of new states in Eastern Europe after the First World War. There were discussed topics that are relevant also today in attempts to understand the relations between culture and politics. What kind of soft methods has been used in trying to control the historical narrative during the First World War, right after it, during the 20th century and today and in what sense can different acts to defined as propaganda? What were the semiotic conflicts, artistic battlegrounds and attempts to influence narratives? What can this past teach us about the current day’s forms of propaganda? The exhibition and the debate were elements which were supposed to help to find some answers for those questions.

In Eastern Europe, where new states like Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland were emerging, the effects of the Russian Civil War were felt until the mid-1920s. Geopolitical uncertainties dominated the region as nobody knew how the situation would unfold in defining national entitles, their friends, allies and enemies. National communities were defined as well as ways in which a new war could be prevented by domestic and foreign policies. Symbols were created by artists ready to create a new aesthetic for people to imagine the past and the future of their emerging state.

We encourage to watch the whole lecture and discussion on culture, propaganda and history here.

The leader of the project is a think-tank WiseEuropa, however, the partner institutions that are in charge to accomplish the activities are Latvijas Arpolitikas Instituts in Riga (Latvia), Porin Kaupunki in Pori (Finland), Tallinna Tehnikaulikool in Tallinn (Estonia), Vytauto Didziojo Universitetas in Kaunas (Lithuania) and also Jan Nowak-Jezioranski College of Eastern Europe in Wroclaw (Poland).

The project is financed with the support of the Europe for Citizens programme of the European Union. The European Commission support for the production of this publication does not constitute an endorsement of the contents which reflects the views only of the authors, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.


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