Accepted Paper:

Tunnelling and transformation: representing certainty and uncertainty in Post-socialist change  

Author:

James Quin (National University of Ireland)

Paper short abstract:

Based on fieldwork in Slovakia in recent years, in particular on a railway strike, this paper applies queer theoretical perspectives to an examination of representations of certainty and uncertainty as part of post-socialist change.

Paper long abstract:

Based on fieldwork in Slovakia in recent years, this paper applies queer theoretical perspectives to an examination of representations of certainty and uncertainty as part of postsocialist change. The paper examines the development of metaphors drawn from railway trains and tunnels, and their 'actualisation' during a railway strike in Slovakia in 2003, as one representation, but also looks at representations of almost magical transformation, in which, for instance, the dissident overnight becomes president. This paper goes on to examine the way in which such representations can be extended into contemporary reflections concerning an expanding Europe. Thus these representations can be seen as reflecting concerns with issues like hard and soft borders, flexibility, new ideas about the body, and about the uses of identity in contemporary Europe.

Panel W058
Moral journeys: manifestations of certainty and uncertainty across Europe