Head of the Organising Committee
Sanna Turoma
sanna.turoma [at] helsinki.fi

Conference Coordinator
Kaarina Aitamurto
kaarina.aitamurto [at] helsinki.fi

Conference Secretary
Maarit Elo-Valente
maarit.elo-valente [at] helsinki.fi

Conference Intern
Miikka Piiroinen
miikka.piiroinen [at] helsinki.fi

Conference e-mail:
fcree-aleksconf [at] helsinki.fi

The Aleksanteri Institute

Unioninkatu 33 (P.O. Box 42)
00014 University of Helsinki
phone +358-(0)50-3565 802

aleksanteri [at] helsinki.fi


Past Aleksanteri Conferences

Magdalena Leichtova (University of West Bohemia, Czech Republic)

Attraction of Authoritarism - The Soft Power of Authoritarian Regime in Democratic Societies

The paper is focused on specific relations of contemporary Russia and the Czech Republic. Czech President Zeman represents very unusual type of European Union member state leader - very conciliatory, even protective to current Russian regime. Although he represents only one part of the political system, his opinions find support among part of the political elites as well as certain parts of the public. This paper focuses on how the authoritarian regime can be successfully attractivized (socially constructed as attractive) in the democratic society. The paper maps President Zeman´s attitude toward Russia and focuses on usage of sensitive cultural, social, and historical sentiments, and on addressing seemingly unrelated frustrations of some parts of the public when constructing the image of Russia. On the case of Czech-Russian relations the issue of potential soft power of authoritarian regimes in some segments of the democratic societies is to be explored.