Forget about Brussels and Strasbourg, drive to Marijamopole. Karl Schlögel will be there to show you some of the true heroes of the new Europe.
Once a week Marijamopole is the centre of Europe. That is when this provincial Lithuanian town is transformed into Europe's largest used car market and the east of the continent picks up cars from the West. Towns like Marijamopole reveal much about the relationship between western and eastern Europe, and about Europe's nature. These European towns once shared a common culture, which was evident in their public buildings and in the bourgeoisie's lifestyle. The last century's totalitarian horrors have destroyed that culture. Yet whoever has been travelling extensively through Europe, like Karl Schlögel, can observe a new, European lifestyle being formed since 1989. It has created an invisible link across the continent, from Paris to Nizhny Novgorod. Schlögel also observes how elements of an older Europe are being brought back from oblivion: the Bauhaus style in Brno and Art Nouveau in Budapest. Karl Schlögel's new book describes the new Europe from the perspective of its towns – and will surprise even those who think they know their continent.
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