Books in Perspective, June, 2016.
Despite decades of struggle for freedom of speech and access to unbiased information, the 21st century has not ended manipulation of and by the media. On the contrary, conflicts are being fought and won on TV-screens, airwaves and the Internet with an alarming intensity and frequency. Where does Russia figure in this troubling landscape? Did Vladimir Putin’s media-savvy regime invent the new mediated world in which ‘nothing is true and everything is possible‘ or did it simply follow certain preexisting models? Can Putin’s propaganda be countered and would this help to end the disinformation age in which we are living? Peter Pomerantsev took his newly published book “Nichts ist wahr und alles ist möglich” as a starting point to explore – in conversation with IWM Visiting Fellow Anton Shekhovtsov – new forms of Russian propaganda.
Peter Pomerantsev is an award-winning publicist, nonfiction writer and TV producer based in London. His is a regular contributor to the London Review of Books, Atlantic, Financial Times, Foreign Policy, focusing largely, though not exclusively, on propaganda in the 21st century. Previously, Pomerantsev worked as a consultant on EU and World Bank development projects in the former USSR. In 2013, he was a Russia in Global Dialogue Fellow at the IWM. The German version of his book about working as a TV producer in Putin’s Russia, Nichts ist wahr und alles ist möglich: Abenteuer in Putins Russland, was published in 2015.
Anton Shekhovtsov, an expert on the European far right and illiberal tendencies in Central and Eastern Europe, is a Fellow at the Legatum Institute, London. From January to December 2016 he is also a Ukraine in European Dialogue Visiting Fellow at the IWM. Beyond that, he is general editor of the Explorations of the Far Right book series at ibidem-Verlag (Germany). His publications include: New Radical Right-Wing Parties in European Democracies (in Russian; Stuttgart, 2011), The Post-War Anglo-American Far Right (Basingstoke, 2014) and White Power Music (Ilford, 2012).
In cooperation with Deutsche Verlags-Anstalt (DVA)