In 1989 communism crumbled in eastern Europe and with it one of the most conspicuous legacies of the Second World War. This book charts the demise of east European communism and analyses the failure of the communist experiment, the revolutionary events of 1989 and the post-communist aftermath as the legacy of both these processes. Starting from the premise that communism's proclaimed egalitarian, modernizing goals always enjoyed more support than the one-party politics through which these goals were pursued, Robin Okey explains communism's initial ability to survive crises but then its cumulative decline in the face of dissidence, economic weakness and reform movements, and, after 1989, the growing divergence between the northern and Balkan states, the revival of ex-communist parties as the new liberalism faltered, and the repeated failure of academics to anticipate these shifts.
By analysing these issues in the context of the region's drive since the nineteenth-century to catch up with western Europe, this book concludes that the events of 1989 can cast light more widely still, on the fortunes of the three great ideas that the continent as a whole derived from revolutionary France: liberalism, socialism and nationalism.
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(234mm x 156mm x 22mm)
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
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