In his internationally praised book The Europeans, historian Orlando Figes tells the story of the birth of a European people, in the radically modernizing European society of the 19th century. The book looks at Europe as a whole and explores the arts as a unifying force on the continent. What can we learn from European art and culture? Are some politicians right in claiming there is no European demos at all? Or is the idea of a European people still alive?
Figes explores the central theme of this year’s Forum on European Culture “We, the People”, with a speech specially written for this festival edition.