The third Central Europe Symposium with keynote speakers from the region and panels on Politics/History, Economics and Culture.
The Third Central Europe Symposium, co-hosted by the UCL School of Slavonic and East European Studies (UCL SSEES) and the embassies of Austria, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia will reflect on the parallels and contrasts between the momentous changes during and immediately following the First World War and the dramatic challenges the European project faces in the present.
In particular, the symposium will approach the 25th anniversary of the collapse of one-party regimes in Central and Eastern Europe not simply as the end of a forty-year experiment with communism, but as the latest moment in a century-long process of transformation. The symposium will inquire how far Central Europe has recovered its distinct place on the map of Europe, a place previously obscured by the Cold War division of Europe, and how it contributes to the Europe-wide discussion on how to sustain and develop democratic and liberal institutions.
- Registration is required. Register now via Eventbrite
Background and rationale
One hundred years ago, Tomáš Garrigue Masaryk—soon to become the first President of Czechoslovakia—delivered the inaugural lecture at the School of Slavonic and East European Studies in London. Masaryk argued that the small nations of Central Europe would have a distinctive role to play in the post-war world and were key to resolving the European crisis that had culminated in the outbreak of the First World War.
In the intervening century the face of Europe has changed immeasurably—and ultimately for the better. Yet the persistence of some of the major questions Masaryk grappled with a century ago is palpable. What is the position of the smaller European nations, societies and cultures in relation to larger ones? How should one understand the changing role and identity of the Central European region? How should one reconcile the need for European integration with local autonomy and national diversity?