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Pop Culture Around '89

Self and Other in Music and Media:East Central Europe before and after 1989
May 2, 2014
Room 1219 International Affairs Building, Columbia University
420 W118th St

An academic event that, for once, will speak to all lovers of popular culture: find out about the role of Polish heavy metal in the end of communism and why Roma in East Central Europe often turn to hip hop to express themselves. Learn about films that made a difference in an era when it seemed that a film can in fact make a difference. And about films that are made when many in the region feel it is very difficult to make a difference with or without a camera. Since the chaos and destruction of World War II, East Central Europe experienced the imposition of Soviet communism and then its rapid disintegration into dystopia, culminating in an invincible popular revolt symbolized by the toppling of the Berlin Wall in November 1989. The Fall of the Wall was accompanied by and popular media reflect the societal understandings and representations of the years before and after the Fall of the Wall. The workshop includes two panels, which focus on various images of the self or the self- other relationship in the different countries in the region. A new utopian dream of personal freedom, political democracy, integration in the outside world, benign capitalism and consumer paradise. Twenty five years later, this workshop sets out to examine and compare the ways in which popular music and popular media reflect the societal understandings and representations of the years before and after the Fall of the Wall. The workshop includes two panels, which focus on various images of the self or the self- other relationship in the different countries in the region.

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