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A History of Eastern Europe: Crisis and Change (1998) by Robert Bideleux

By Robert Bideleux

A heritage of jap Europe: problem and alter is a wide-ranging unmarried quantity background of the "lands between", the lands that have lain among Germany, Italy, and the Tsarist and Soviet empires. Bideleux and Jeffries learn the issues that experience bedevilled this stricken area in the course of its imperial prior, the interwar interval, less than fascism, lower than communism, and because 1989. whereas generally targeting the trendy period and at the results of ethnic nationalism, fascism and communism, the publication additionally deals unique, notable and revisionist insurance of: * historic and medieval instances* the Hussite Revolution, the Renaissance, the Reformation and the Counter-Reformation* the legacies of Byzantium, the Ottoman Empire and the Hapsburg Empire* the increase and decline of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth* the influence of the region's robust Russian and Germanic neighbours* rival thoughts of "Central" and "Eastern" Europe* the Twenties land reforms and the Thirties melancholy. supplying a thematic ancient survey and research of the formative strategies of swap that have performed the paramount roles in shaping the advance of the region, A heritage of japanese Europe itself will play a paramount function within the reviews of eu historians.

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Extra resources for A History of Eastern Europe: Crisis and Change (1998)

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In 1986 the Hungarian writer Gyorgy Konrad, another leading champion of ‘Central Europe’, similarly acknowledged that it was not a reality but a project or an aspiration: ‘What is revolutionary about the idea of Central Europe is precisely the fact that today it is only a dream. By contrast with the political reality of Eastern Europe and Western Europe, Central Europe exists only as a cultural counterhypothesis…. If there is no Central Europe, there is no Europe…. If we don’t cling to the utopia of Central Europe we must give up the game….

Moreover, so long as it is believed that each ethnic group has ‘freehold rights’ over a particular patch of land, there will always remain the potential for violent inter-ethnic conflict in some benighted part of this war-scarred region. The belated initiation and the even later completion of the nation-building and statebuilding processes and the prominence of ‘ethnic’ or ‘integral’ nationalism in twentiethcentury eastern Europe is thus mainly to be explained by centuries of sharply contrasting political, social and economic conditions and structures.

East Central European dissidents developed a common set of values emphasizing social self-organization and self-defence, non-violence, the priority of the individual over the state and society and the primacy of individual human rights (Garton Ash 1986:197–204). ‘Truth and certain elementary values such as respect for human rights, civil society, the indivisibility of freedom and the rule of law—these were the notions that bound us together and made it worth our while to enter again and again into the unequal struggle with the powers that be’ (Havel 1994a:215).

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