PROSTITUTION, CAPITALISM, AND WAR
WITH NANCY WINGFIELD
Was prostitution a means of social mobility for women in fin-de-siècle Habsburg Central Europe? How widespread was prostitution in Cisleithanian Austria during the First World War? How were women recruited into prostitution, what were their working conditions and how do we get from Austria to Argentina? Nancy Wingfield has revisited some of these issues in her new book, The World of Prostitution in Late Imperial Austria (Oxford University Press, 2017).
SLOW CONVERGENCE? EASTERN EUROPEAN ECONOMIES AFTER 1989
WITH TAMÁS RÉTI
Why are Austrian wages still more than double as compared to those in neighboring Slovakia and Hungary, 28 years after 1989? Why qualitative catching up with the West is lagging behind quantitative progress? Will East-Central European capitalism remain different from that of Western? With Budapest-based economist, Tamás Réti, we talk about János Kornai, the IMF, and the (lack of) alternatives for economic development after the collapse of state socialism, among other themes.
MAKING SENSE OF MODERNITY: CONSPIRACY THEORIES IN MODERN RUSSIA
WITH ILYA YABLOKOV
Why did anti-Western conspiracy theories emerge as mainstream discourses that attempted to explain Russian politics? How do 19th Russian interpretations of the Crimean War relate to current discussions on the 2014 annexation of Crimea and Russia’s relationship with “the West”? Do contemporary American and Russian conspiracy theories share family resemblances?
ROMA CAPITALISM AT THE MARGINS: MIXED ECONOMY AND LIFE IN A FORMER WORKING CLASS NEIGHBORHOOD IN BUCHAREST
WITH GERGŐ PULAY
What are the options of livelihood available for Bucharest Romas in the 2010s? Anthropologist Gergo Pulay touches on “miraculous” scrap metal trade, drug abuse, the transformation of a former working-class neighborhood as well as emigration. He closes with sharing his favorite manele song “Mahala și țiganie.”