Now in a fully revised and updated edition, this essential text provides a comprehensive introduction to Central and Eastern Europe, including the Baltics and Ukraine. Broad but nuanced, it offers a reader-friendly overview of the globally and regionally significant changes and challenges the region faces. Divided into two parts, the book first presents thematic chapters on key issues, including nationalism and challenges to democratic institutions and practices, the contentious politics of memory, debates over demography and migration in a region with a shrinking population, and Russian efforts to retain regional influence through hard and soft power. The case-study chapters that follow highlight key political developments after communism as well as providing a strong foundation for readers on regional history and the political and economic experiences of the communist years. Each covers the foundational topics of political history, political competition, economic development, social problems, relationships with European institutions, and threats to good governance. For students and specialists alike, this book will be an invaluable resource on this dynamic region of Europe.
Zsuzsa Csergő is professor of political studies at Queen’s University, Canada.
Daina S. Eglitis is associate professor of sociology and international affairs at the George Washington University.
Paula M. Pickering is associate professor of government at William & Mary.
List of Illustrations
PART I: INTRODUCTION
1 Central and East Europe: Turbulent Histories, Dramatic Transformations, and Twenty-First-Century Challenges
Zsuzsa Csergő, Daina S. Eglitis, and Paula M. Pickering
PART II: POLICIES AND ISSUES
2 Liberal, Fascist, and Communist Legacies
Jeffrey S. Kopstein
3 Nationalism and Its Challenges to Democratic Governance
Zsuzsa Csergő and Jason Wittenberg
4 Civil Society and Political Parties: Growth and Change in the Organizations Linking People and Power
5 Economic Reforms and Trends
6 Demography and Migration
Daina S. Eglitis and Michelle Kelso
7 Transitional Justice and Memory
Eva-Clarita Pettai and Vello Pettai
8 Gender Regimes
9 The EU and Its Newer Members: Forging Ties in Turbulent Times
Ronald H. Linden
10 Russia Rising: Soft and Hard Power Challenges to Security
Jennie L. Schulze
PART III: CASE STUDIES
Jane L. Curry
12 The Czech and Slovak Republics
Sharon L. Wolchik
Federigo Argentieri and Ognen Vangelov
14 The Baltic Countries
Janusz Bugajski and Margarita Assenova
Arolda Elbasani and Seimir Elbasani
18 Former Yugoslavia and Its Successor States
Paula M. Pickering and Jelena Subotić
PART IV: CONCLUSION
20 Changes and Challenges: Three Questions
About the Contributors
The declared aim of this textbook is to ‘illuminate contemporary politics in Central and East Europe and to provide insights into regional paradoxes, as well as past accomplishments, current developments, and future challenges’ (p. 4). There is no question that the editors of the volume and the authors of the individual chapters have accomplished this end. Throughout the book, they present an accessible yet sufficiently in-depth treatment of relevant issues that builds on and adds to the strengths of previous editions. Packed with useful features (such as discussion questions at the end of every chapter), the book presents an ideal and timely resource for students, lecturers and researchers alike. Amidst renewed interest in the region, it will undoubtedly be an invaluable companion for those wishing to gain a better understanding of CEE.
This timely new edition of the standard text for introducing students to the politics of Central and Eastern Europe is well-timed to address the renewed importance of the region in this age of democratic backsliding. The new editorial team is an excellent choice to replace the venerable outgoing editors.
The appearance of an updated fifth edition of Central and East European Politics is a welcome event. Bringing the ‘Changes and Challenges’ facing the region down to the current problems of democratic backsliding and the arrival of the global pandemic, the new team of editors has assembled a dazzling array of experts to discuss—both by policies and issues and in comparative case studies by country—the politics of this region so crucial to European stability. Zsuzsa Csergő, Daina Eglitis, and Paula Pickering have taken up the torch from original editors Sharon Wolchik and Jane Leftwich Curry without missing a beat. This new edition will further solidify the book’s reputation as the go-to source for students, practitioners, and scholars seeking to understand the successes and challenges facing the political leaders and citizens of the European Union’s newest members
This volume is a uniquely rich and readable analysis of the politics of East and Central Europe. What makes this book so compelling is the close attention the editors and contributors pay to contemporary and historical developments (and their relationship to one another); individual countries as well as the region as a whole; and issues—such as nationalism, regime change, and the powerful impact of international actors—that have shaped regional dynamics for centuries.
A scholarly tour de force and an essential resource for teaching and research on Central and Eastern Europe. The thematic chapters and country case studies adeptly chart the region’s political development and bring it right up to date, delineating the challenges to democratization posed by the current ‘illiberal turn.’
The brutal and unprovoked attack on Ukraine by Russian forces in early 2022 has vividly illustrated the importance of understanding the histories, societies, and politics of the Central and East European region. In response to this attack, Paul D’Anieri, the author of the Ukraine chapter has provided a supplement. You can view it here.
Written by leading scholars
-The only up-to-date text available on a rapidly changing region
-The only text to include coverage of the Baltic countries and Ukraine
-Includes country case studies and thematic chapters
-New volume editors
-Affordable e-book option
- PPT slides, study questions, and recommended readings
-New introduction and conclusion
-New chapters on
Liberal, Fascist, and Communist Legacies
Demography and Migration
- Restructured and updated thematic chapters
- Reorganized country case study chapters that are concise, focused, and reader-friendly
-Seven new contributors