Commons,Critique of Political Economy,intellectual property,Law

The enclosures of Brussels

by Akis Gavriilidis

Brussels, as everybody knows, is the seat of the EU institutions, as well as of several other international agencies –private, public, or any combination of the two- who all day long praise the virtues of «liberalisation and market-oriented reforms» and propose/ impose them on all countries as the only one-size-fits-all solution. So much so that the name of the city itself has come to constitute a synonym for neoliberal governance.

But apart from being a symbol, Brussels is a real city where real people live, whose lives and needs are administered and served (or not) every day, in certain ways rather than others. (Ιncluding the people –dozens of thousands of them- who work for the said institutions and agencies). These ways can rarely be considered as a paradigmatic delivery of the promise for a “smooth functioning market system which provides Συνέχεια

national identity,Performativity,Politics,Translation

Name trouble: the «so-called people» and the communism of language

by Akis Gavriilidis

I. Introduction

In an interview to the Macedonian Television in February 2011, the British diplomat Robin O’Neil declared:

“The Greece-Macedonia name row is the most bizarre diplomatic dispute in Europe today. No one outside of Greece can perceive why should Macedonia change its name. What is Greece’s national interest in doing this? Greece has not suffered in any way as a result of Macedonia’s existence under the current name in the past 20 years, and Greece never opposed Macedonia’s existence as part of SFR Yugoslavia»[1].

He also said that “the consistent Greek opposition to Macedonia’s NATO and EU accession is especially difficult to understand” (ibid.).

O’Neil here states the obvious as regards diplomatic practice and international relations, but what he says is also valid epistemologically. I think that his statement is a very useful way to start a treatment of the issue from a political theory point of view as well: in fact, if diplomats had a hard time to figure out what Greece is trying to achieve or to avoid by its reaction, social theorists did not do much better up to Συνέχεια