Europe talks to Europe. A Polylogue on Culture and Politics

Democracy live. Media, politics and the tyranny of the opinion poll
Public debate, 6 December 2010, 6 pm, Sofia

Europe’s current crisis is about more than money. European Council President Herman Van Rompuy, in his famous “battle for survival” speech, recently pointed not only to the crisis of the euro as a threat to the European integration project, but also to a European crisis of democracy, characterized by the rise of populism and a surge in “anti-politics”. Many analysts have identified the media as the single most important factor in a development that changes the rules of democracy. According to Bulgarian cultural anthropologist Ivaylo Ditchev, the marketization of the media combines with digital media technology to create a political order determined by public opinion. The permanent live communication between the governing and the governed leaves no space for the accumulation of authority. In political decision-making, the question whether opinion is right or wrong becomes secondary to its legitimacy as a form of feedback. What does this mean for citizens’ trust in the political system and for democracy as such? This will be discussed on 6 December in Sofia.

Judith Vidal-Hall, British journalist and broadcaster, London
Ivaylo Ditchev, Professor of cultural anthropology at St Kliment Ohridsky University, Sofia
Chair and introduction: Carl Henrik Fredriksson, Eurozine
The debate will be in English.

Ivaylo Ditchev                                            Judith Vidal-Hall

The Red House, Lyuben Karavelov 15, Sofia, Bulgaria

The series Europe talks to Europe is a cooperation of ERSTE Foundation and Eurozine.
For more information visit