This episode features two academics, Professor Ryszard Legutko of Poland and Dr. Josette Baer of Switzerland who examine the connections between present-day Cancel Culture ideology and the two great totalitarian movements of the 20th century, fascism and communism.
All over the Western world, speakers who hold unpopular views that is, views unpopular with the Left are being told that they cannot speak. Sometimes they are dismissed by the companies for which they work. Sometimes their articles are accepted by newspapers but then returned because some journalists on the paper object. Sometimes they are physically attacked and injured. There’s been a reluctance to accept that these things are happening, but they are.
The Danube Institute brought together this group of distinguished academics, journalists, and artists from several countries to discuss this disturbing new trend.
Professor Legutko was raised in Communist Poland and is the former editor of Solidarity’s official journal of philosophy, one of several editors of the former Samizdat underground quarterly ARKA, published during the Soviet era. An academic, philosopher, politician, and author, Professor Legutko is the Professor of Philosophy at Jagellonian University in Krakow, Poland where he specializes in ancient philosophy and political theory. He is currently a Member of the European Parliament from Poland and is Chairman of the European Conservatives and Reformist parliamentary group. He has held several elected as well as appointed offices including a Member of the Polish Senate where he served as Deputy Speaker, former Education Minister, and former Secretary of State in the Chancellery of President Kaczyński. His latest book is The Cunning of Freedom: Saving the Self in an Age of False Idols; Encounter Books 2021. Prof. Dr. Josette Baer, Institute of Philosophy University of Zurich, is a Lecturer in political theory with a focus on Central and Eastern Europe. She is currently teaching a class on Thomas Sowell, a noted American economist, and author. Dr. Baer will provide a focus on Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union and the satellite states in Communist Eastern Europe.
This is a production of the Danube Institute and introduced by Danube Institute president, John O’Sullivan.