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Patapievici, Horia-Roman

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5 articles of this author have been cited in the European Press Review so far.

Revista 22 - Romania | 19/05/2009

Horia-Roman Patapievici on the lack of trust in democracy

"What is democracy?" Horia-Roman Patapievici, head of the Romanian Culture Institute (ICR) has often asked himself. In a guest commentary for the weekly Revista 22 he tries to answer this question: "I am against the idea that democracy should be an ideology that dictates values and goals. In a modest society the goals of the people may not just be the goals of the political regimes. Democracy is a framework. But in addition to the mechanism for (non-violent) changes of government the importance of which is universally accepted, this framework contains a solidarity that does not receive much attention (here) - a solidarity of the citizens with the democratic institutions that finds its expression in trust in democratic institutions that work in the interest of the citizens even when they are not kept under surveillance. Democracy is not just about elections. It is above all a matter of trust. But if you have the feeling you are betrayed every time you turn your back, you go crazy. Lack of trust kills."

Evenimentul Zilei - Romania | 09/04/2009

Horia-Roman Patapievici on the Romanians' pragmatism regarding Europe

Romanian author Horia-Roman Patapievici writes in the daily Evenimentul Zilei about the different meanings Europe has for the two largest new member states. "For historical reasons as far as Romania is concerned, so far Europe has been only an instrument for guaranteeing geopolitical security and for countering its underdevelopment, but not an ideal. Now we have security and slowly we are leaving behind our underdevelopment. The time has come to pay more attention to the idealistic dimension of the European project. Unlike the Poles, who in the way they participated in the debate over the European constitution have proven that Europe is first and foremost an idea for them, we have taken a primarily pragmatic approach to EU membership. … While for the Poles the idea of a united Europe is a concept that has not yet been put into practice, … for us Europe's soul appears to be reduced to the Acquis communautaire [the inventory of rights and obligations of the EU states]. There has never been a Romanian debate on the question of what the new Europe should look like. If we had taken the spiritual reality of the new Europe into account rather than focusing solely on implementing the regulations it churns out as if on a conveyor belt we would have noticed that its architects have made drastic changes to the traditional Europe."

Revista 22 - Romania | 20/05/2008

The role of intellectuals in Eastern Europe

The Romanian writer Horia-Roman Patapievici comments in an interview on the role of intellectuals in Eastern Europe. "There are those who declare that with the fall of European communism came the death of the intellectuals, just as Roland Barthes once declared the 'death of the author' or Michael Foucault the 'death of man'. This is nonsense. ... Of course it may be that the role of intellectuals is no longer as prominent as it was in the 20th century (although even then it was often a pitiful one). But to claim that intellectuals no longer have any influence is tantamount to denying citizens their intellectual status. ... The resentment against intellectuals arises from the notion that to be an intellectual is a privilege, and many who have a university education and can be seen and heard in the media but do not enjoy the 'privilege' of belonging to the circle of intellectuals want to get rid of it. But being an intellectual by no means gives you a carte blanche to be a prominent media figure and well-known or famous."

Cotidianul - Romania | 06/11/2007

Horia-Roman Patapievici on Romanian society's loss of touch with reality

Writer and philosopher Horia-Roman Patapievici talks in an interview with Eugen Istodor about the blockades within Romanian society, the subject of his last book. "Our fundamental problem is that we lack a common sense of reality. Reality consists in the comparison of one's own experiences with those of society as a whole. Objective reality is based on a continuous exchange of perceptions and ideas between people. It's impossible to follow this process of adjustment step by step, but the result is a common reality. ... I maintain that Romanian reality is neither standardised nor objective. ... This would explain the lack of reaction to abuses of power and the general ignorance of important works published in our country."

Evenimentul Zilei - Romania | 05/04/2007

Opposition profits from the new coalition in Bucharest

Following the collapse of the coalition between the Democrats (PD) and the Liberals (PNL), Prime Minister Calin Tariceanu has presented his new cabinet. The new minority government consists of members of the PNL and the Hungarian Democratic Alliance of Romania (UDMR), which together command 22 percent of the vote. Horia-Roman Patapievici writes that the main opposition party, the Social Democrats, will benefit most from this new constellation. "Prime Minister Calin Tariceanu's new cabinet is in the hands of the Social Democrats (PSD)... As the Social Democrats have the greatest number of MPs in the parliament, they can now control and map out the government's agenda. The Social Democrats have remained in the opposition and have thus won the privilege of both governing and being the opposition. This blurring of the borders offers the PSD a unique opportunity to pave the way for a victory in the 2008 elections. It benefits from both the successes and the failures of the Tariceanu government. The PSD has the others cornered."

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