New Politics of Morality in Central and Eastern Europe

Actors, Discourse, and Context


  • Zora Hesova Charles University

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Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) have recently witnessed a surge in protest, mobilisation, and debates about marriage, abortion, gender, and feminism. This politics of morality has been notably more successful in the East than in the West of Europe: Most CEE countries have legally or even constitutionally precluded any chance of adopting same-sex marriage, some have rejected the Istanbul agreement, and many parliaments have debated “gender” in a hostile manner. The rising conservative voice in politics appears to signal a sort of illiberal, conservative turn in post-Communist EU member states. This article intends aims to explore the phenomenon of morality politics in itself, that is looking at the actors, strategies, discourse, and the contexts of individual types of mobilisations. Identifying contextual and transnational factors of the relative success of morality politics in CEE allows to avoid the sole perspective of a culturalist explanation and to analyse the instrumental nature of morality mobilisations.




How to Cite

Hesova, Z. 2021. New Politics of Morality in Central and Eastern Europe: Actors, Discourse, and Context. Intersections. East European Journal of Society and Politics. 7, 1 (May 2021), 59–77. DOI: