The political crisis in Belarus that unfolded in 2020 uncovered a deep divide within Belarusian society. Two years after the division between the archaic regime and the large part of the society seeking political changes became even more acute. In this text, I propose to reflect on the ideological and informational gap between the supporters of the authoritarian regime and the adherents of changes in Belarus through the prism of a conceptual pairing of ‘analogue dictatorship’ and ‘digital multitude’. Analogue dictatorship’s two main features are the use of outdated technologies of state governance and of methods of ideological indoctrination with the reliance on ‘old media’. The concept of ‘multitude’ is considered in the context of the development of digital technologies and new tools of communication, which fostered the formation of horizontal ties, non-hierarchical modes of communication and building the infrastructures of solidarity, thus playing a crucial role in the unfolding of Belarusian revolution. The tactics applied by the authoritarian regime in Belarus for retaining its power represent a sheer example of how the ‘analogue dictatorship’ attempts to hinder the emergence of digital democracy.

Image credit: Photo by Almira Ousmanova of Sergey Shabokhin’s project taken at the art exhibition “Every Day: Art, Solidarity, Resistance” (Kyiv, Arsenal,  2021)

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