Mea Culpa

  • Cristian Tileagă
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Discursive Psychology book series (PSDP)


The transition from communism to democracy has been a period when possibilities of constructing and affirming (alternative) personal, group, and community identities have been innumerable (Andrews 2000; Konopasek and Andrews 2000). At the same time, this period has also been one of re-evaluating and re-affirming personal, group, and community biographies from under the sway of the communist past, especially the past that related to how individuals, groups, and communities became an object of … for communist state institutions of control and surveillance. As Andrews has noted:

members of societies in acute social change are not only (and perhaps not even) experiencing a liberation of their memory; they are scrambling to construct new and acceptable identities for themselves, ones which will be compatible with the changed world in which they now live. (2000, p. 181)

In common with many other Eastern European countries, the end of the communist era in Romania has seen the publication of documents which have been perceived as evidence of complicity between the Securitate (the communist secret police) and certain public figures. The process of releasing and making public documents of the Communist Secret Police has been very slow and ridden with controversy. Investigations of the released documents have led to a series of allegations of ‘collaboration’ with the Securitate which, in turn, has led to a number of public disclosures from those concerned by those allegations: politicians, public intellectuals, clerics, and journalists. These disclosures have been delivered in a variety of forms (e.g., interviews with journalists, open letters to newspapers, etc.). This chapter is concerned with the production and politics of public disclosure in relation to accounting for ‘collaboration’ with the Securitate. It examines, in detail, an apologia for ‘being an informer’ by a Romanian public intellectual in a letter sent to one of Romania’s wide-circulation national newspapers.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Cristian Tileagă
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Social SciencesLoughborough UniversityLoughboroughUK

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