The main challenge that post-truth poses, as the concept itself suggests, is the alleged end of centrality of the idea of truth in politics. Central and Eastern Europe finds itself in a political culture where claims, ideas and utterances must no longer necessarily be grounded in proven empirical facts, in order to be held true by the broader public. This situation, however, is by no means new or unheard of. In this regard, it resembles Soviet social reality, where officially held narratives also had scant empirical grounding. Furthermore, while it were Central-Eastern European dissidents who problematized these issues and set out to successfully counter them, resulting in the events of 1989, the same dissident heritage is also used nowadays to promote agendas of populist illiberal regimes in the region. The talk explores the prospects and challenges to utilizing the dissident heritage to tackling these contemporary issues.
Arvydas Grišinas is a Researcher at Kaunas University of Technology in Lithuania. Currently he is a Eurasia in Global Dialogue Visiting Fellow at the IWM.