New Perspectives 2/2016

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New Perspectives:
Interdisciplinary Journal of Central & East European Politics and International Relations

We are delighted to present issue 02/2016 of New Perspectives – our subscribers have access to the full contents of the journal, which are listed and linked-to below. However, we are also very happy to be able to offer free, open access to Derek Sayer’s fascinating review essay (see below) as well as the Editorial, which, for the first time split into two parts. Roland Bleiker provides a moving and illuminating tribute to the brilliant and pathbreaking Alex Danchev, who passed away in 2016. Scholars like Danchev and Bleiker helped inspire the creation of New Perspectives and I draw extensively on their work in defending and advocating adventurous, interdisciplinary scholarship of the kind that our journal promotes. You can download these pieces as they appear in the journal from this post (click on the links below) or read them online.

Subscribers get access to the full issue, which is also available through the EBSCO, Proquest and CEEOL databases – make sure that you or your institution subscribe or have access through the databases to avoid missing out on cutting-edge research and analysis on issues that affect us all. Juha Vuori makes a compelling argument about how we mainly get deterrence wrong and how we can do better. We’ll be sending a copy of Vuori’s ‘Deterring Things with Words: Deterrence as a Speech Act ‘to the incoming US Administraton – we don’t know if they’ll read it but anyone wanting to be up to speed with the latest in deterrence theory should. In light of current geopolitical upheavals and the EU’s troubles in its Eastern neighbourhood, policymakers as well as scholars would be well advised to read Molly Krasnodębska’s novel analysis of the tensions that are built into the Union’s ‘Eastern Partnership’. Rather than focusing on the tensions between values and interests that has recently characterised discussions of the EU’s approach, Krasnodębska focuses on different conceptions of values from the partnership’s key players – Sweden and Poland.

In keeping with our commitment to innovation, New Perspectives continues to break new ground in this issue by publishing our first ‘Cultural Cut’ – an extract from Louis Armand’s acclaimed novel, The Combinations. Armand’s bohemian vortex of a book was recently shortlisted for The Guardian’s ‘Not the Booker’ prize and Richard Marshall, writing in 3AM magazine argued that is “important and corrosive novel, which is a commitment to creativity in the face of absurdity, a politics of avant-garde literary concentration and experience that knows, as Camus had it, that: ‘The innocent is the person who explains nothing.’”

We thus throw Armand’s literary work into constellation with various forms of scholarship, with the the visuality and creativity of Danchev and Bleiker, Sayer’s indisciplined historical sociology, Vuori’s linguistics and Krasnodębska’s political philosophy. We do so in the hope of encouraging new ventures in both how and what we seek to understand or explain, but also to reflect on and experiment with the ways in which we represent our ideas and analyses. We not only have our first ‘cultural cut’ but also publish photographs for the first time in the journal’s history.

We look forward to your engagement with this issue and to your brilliant and pathbreaking submissions for future issues.

Benjamin Tallis, Editor-in-Chief & the New Perspectives Editorial Team


1. Editorial: To Be “More Alert and Less Deceived.” “To Marvel At All There Is to Be Marvelled At.”

Benjamin Tallis

2. Editorial – Tribute – Visuality and Creativity in Global Politics: In Memory of Alex Danchev

Roland Bleiker

Research articles

3. Deterring Things With Words: Deterrence as a Speech Act

Juha A. Vuori

4. ‘Like Us’ or ‘One of Us’: Tensions between Liberal and Communitarian Values in EU-Ukraine Relations

Molly Krasnodębska


Review Essay

5. Great Arches Viewed from the Coasts of Bohemia: Reflections Inspired by Tables of Kings

Derek Sayer


Cultural Cut

6. The Combinations 

Louis Armand