Central Europe Review find out about advertising in CER
Vol 2, No 32
25 September 2000
front page 
our awards 
jobs at CER 
CER Direct 
e-mail us 
year 2000 
year 1999 
by subject 
by author 
music shop 
video store 


Dollars make the world go round,
the world go round,
the world go round...Spectres of

Three recent books examine capitalism in Central and Eastern Europe
Seán Hanley

The historian Perry Anderson, one of the intellectual founders of the 1960s Anglo-American New Left, recently wrote that "the only starting-point for a realistic Left today is a lucid registration of historical defeat ... The doctrines of the Right that have theorized capitalism as a systemic order retain their tough-minded strength."[1]

Nowhere has that historic defeat by the doctrines of the neo-liberal and nationalist Right been thrown into sharper relief than in contemporary Central and Eastern Europe. For a number of reasons, the restoration of a capitalist market economy in the region after 1989 came as a shock of historic proportions, for both the moderate and radical Left in Western Europe, as well as for the smaller groups of left-wing oppositionists in Central and Eastern Europe itself.

The unprepared Left

While by the 1970s the bulk of the Western Left was no longer Communist or pro-Soviet, its view of Central and East European state socialism nevertheless left it ill-equipped to understand the processes leading to 1989 and, crucially, wholly unprepared for the new post-Communist politics that followed.

Although both radical leftists and conventional social democrats had polemicised and theorised about the socio-economic structure and class character of the USSR and Soviet-type societies almost constantly since 1917, they paid little serious attention to their possible political dynamics or to the consequences of their (increasingly apparent) economic failure compared to the welfare capitalism and consumerism of the West. Many viewed Central and Eastern Europe largely in terms of international politics and the "exterminism" of the nuclear arms race, largely overlooking, as Václav Havel's essay "Anatomy of a Reticence" famously argued, the possibility (and even the need) for political change in the East.

What little thought was devoted to the subject of change in Central and Eastern Europe in the 1970s and 1980s by those on the Western Left with an interest in the region amounted essentially to a left-socialist version of the "convergence theory" popularised by Western Sovietologists in the 1960s. However, instead of East and West converging on a single technocratic and managerial model, when the Iron Curtain finally came down, the democratic (but insufficiently socialist) West would meet up with the socialist (but insufficiently democratic) East in a reinvigorated, renewed democratic socialism free of the taint of Stalinism, or at the very least some kind of quasi-social democratic Third Way. Similar views were shared by those Central and East European oppositionists with lingering reform Communist ideals.

Optimism turns to disappointment

However, when 1989 did come—as unexpectedly for the Left as for veteran cold warriors of the Right—initial euphoria and optimism soon gave way to disappointment and disorientation. It quickly became apparent that nationalism, anti-Communism and a desire to imitate the tried-and-tested institutions and right-wing ideologies of the rich West had proved far stronger for Central and East European voters than radical visions of re-building the region on a democratic-socialist or social democratic basis.

Despite "people power" seen in some (but not all) countries in the region during the final transition from Communism and the vaguely left-of-centre ideals of the early dissident-politicians, the events of 1989 laid bare some cherished assumptions of the European Left.

Many early left-wing responses to the post-Communist politics of Central and Eastern Europe could perhaps politely be described as "inadequate." Some confined themselves to abstract restatement of the eternal verities of True Socialism, combined with the somewhat condescending view that voters in the region had simply been manipulated by pro-capitalist elites.[2] Others took refuge in a facile pro-Serbianism as Western intervention in former Yugoslavia was gradually stepped up.[3] Both shared the comforting vision of impending economic crisis and political breakdown as a catalyst of change in the region.

Many more open-minded contributions, such as Nigel Swain's reluctant abandonment of the idea of "market socialism" after years of seeking the key to "feasible socialism" in Kadar's Hungary, or Hilary Wainwright's frank acceptance that neo-liberal critiques of state planning (if not neo-liberal remedies) were justified, were vague as to what the Left could positively offer as an alternative.[4] They also have little to say about the emerging realities of the region, about which many were painfully uninformed. It is therefore of some interest to consider three recently published books, all dealing in different ways with capitalism as a "problem" in the new Central Europe from a left-wing or loosely centre-left perspective.

Market Failure: A Guide to the East European "Economic Miracle"
László Andor and Martin Summers
(Pluto Press ISBN 0745308864)

Market Failure: A Guide to the East European 'Economic Miracle'As this book's title suggests, the authors László Andor and Martin Summers see marketisation in Central and Eastern Europe since 1989 as "a fundamental failure" (p 172). Economic transformation has, they argue, seen the destruction of productive capacities and vast declines in popular living standards for little or no economic benefit. While many note the patchy and partial success of marketisation (it is unclear who, if anyone, has ever spoken of the "economic miracle" in the book's title), Andor and Summers bluntly claim that the underlying dynamic of economic change in Central and Eastern Europe since 1989 has been one of industrial and economic disintegration masked by the internationalisation and integration into the global economy.

Even Poland, whose sustained and high growth rates make it the one widely accepted candidate as a "tiger economy," is in their view really "a Trabant economy crawling along on a overheated engine" (p 74). Andor and Summers argue that the key to understanding this partially concealed economic disaster—illustrated by a variety of examples and statistics—was the adoption of Thatcherite free-market policies of economic transformation after 1989, which were wholly unsuited to the state-dominated, highly monopolistic smokestack economies created by state socialism, which lacked any clear financial or regulatory infrastructures.

Capitalism as "cultural revolution"

Given the brutal and ideologically driven nature of such a transformation, the architects of such policies can only be described as "Market Maoists," whose follies are comparable with the utopian Communist extremism of China's disastrous Cultural Revolution of the 1960s and 1970s. Only this time, the boot is on the other foot, as the Great Leap Forward is to be into capitalism and not Communism—a "Great Bourgeois Cultural Revolution," as the authors themselves put it.

The notion of the coming of capitalism as a "cultural revolution" tearing through the existing social fabric echoes the view Central European economist Karl Polányi most famously set out in his classic work The Great Transformation. However, in Market Failure, "cultural revolution" remains simply a (rather laboured) metaphor, and the book's main points of analytical reference lie elsewhere.

The first strand in the book's analysis is an essentially neo-Keynesian critique of the monetarist assumptions of neo-liberalism, stressing those things ignored by "Market Maoism": demand management, deficits as a tool of fiscal policy and the importance of the state in the economy.

This is accompanied by a second line of argument: that post-Communist "transition to the market" is little more than a local variant of the West-prescribed neo-liberal recipes for "structural adjustment" which have been stunting the economics and politics of developing countries since the 1970s. Having first impacted upon Hungary and Poland, whose ill-considered and over-ambitious borrowings exposed them to Western political and economic pressure after the 1973 Oil Crisis, this set of policies, it is argued, took effect on the region as whole after 1989.

From the Second to the Third World

As a result, the authors conclude, Central and East European countries have already slipped back into the peripherality and dependency on the rich core economies of the West which characterised them before World War II, "moving overnight from the Second to the Third World" (p 140). The political implications of the Third Worldisation of the former Socialist bloc appear alarming. The region, the authors claim, is entering a "Weimar phase" and is "on course for unprecedented political turmoil," with the market fundamentalism of the West and pliable elites likely to give rise to powerful currents of chauvinistic "right-wing fundamentalism" (p 150) which could rock Europe to its foundations.

Market Failure is an accessible and provocatively written polemic, which includes a number of important and sometimes original points: for example, that post-Communist economic transformation is a political and ideological process driven by certain groupings and interests, rather than the unfolding of an inevitable process of change; or that agriculture and the countryside have a broader social and environmental importance than simply the production of food.

However, more often than not, the book simply repeats many of the failings of the worst left-wing writing on Central and Eastern Europe from the early 1990s. The book shows some considerable expertise when discussing the politics and economics of development in the poor South, but the comparison of Eastern Europe and the Third World, which underpins much of the book's analysis, is wholly erroneous.

Almost without exception, the ex-Socialist states of Central and Eastern Europe have industrial and agricultural infrastructures, levels of education, living standards and population structures quite different from those of the developing world (even if one includes Latin America in this category, which Andor and Summers seemingly do not). Indeed, such modernisation is one of the most tangible and distinct legacies of state socialism, something which, as men of the Left, the authors might do well to point out. Occasionally, as, for example, in its claims that Central and Eastern Europe faces issues of "food security" comparable to developing countries, the book's projection of the politics of the post-colonial world onto post-Communist Europe seems wildly off the mark.

In geo-political terms, it is already clear that rather than being excluded from Fortress Europe along with the developing world, as Andor and Summers anticipate, many, if not most, Central and East European states are destined to become junior members of the rich nations' club. Even the Western protectorates recently established in Bosnia and Kosovo are clearly outposts of this Fortress, recipients of vastly greater amounts of men, money and matériel than Rwanda, Sierra Leone or East Timor could ever dream of. Ultimately, Market Failure's line of argument is a less eloquent and more long-winded repetition of Adam Przeworksi's famous dictum that "the East had become the South" (Democracy and the Market, CUP, 1991). Ten years after 1989, however, it is clear that it has not.

Secondly, the assumption that all varieties of marketisation in Central and Eastern Europe can simply be reduced to neo-liberalism or "Market Maoism" is a gross oversimplification. Both the book's title and its indiscriminate picking and mixing of examples from states as diverse as Russia and Slovenia perpetuate the myth of an undifferentiated "Eastern Europe." Many of the book's most gory and shocking examples of post-Communist "market failure" are, in fact, drawn from Russia's chaotic and disastrous economic reform of the early 1990s or Poland's 1989-1990 "shock therapy."

Such doomsaying generalisation is highly disingenuous and, like much else in the book, simplistic. It also highlights the authors' inability to make their radical case in any other way than through crude bias. Despite conceding, for example, that "Market Maoism has worked for a significant fraction of the population" (p 42) of some Central and East European states, no attempt is made to explain which states these might be, or indeed how big these "fractions" are.

Neither miracle nor nightmare

The social realities of Central and Eastern Europe are nowhere an economic miracle. But, in most cases, neither are they the economic nightmare. Few Central and East Europeans are so utterly impoverished that they cannot afford to buy an uncensored book or newspaper or eat the occasional citrus fruit. Many of modest means can also afford, albeit with difficulty, a coach trip to the West, a Japanese camera or a reliable TV. Some, of course, are considerably richer.

The uncomfortable fact for the Left, which the authors of Market Failure entirely overlook, is that, in many states in Central and Eastern Europe, consumer capitalism has brought a convenience and freedom of choice—and in many areas an improvement in quality and availability of goods that offsets the macro-economic "market failures" that the book highlights.

Crucially, Andor and Summers' book also largely ignores the powerful impulses and interests within the region itself, which is largely depicted as a passive victim of Western financial organisations and local elites which unquestioningly do their bidding. Such factors include not only the legacies of varied national experiences of Communism, so ably explored by, for example, David Stark and László Bruszt (Postsocialist Pathways: Transforming Politics and Property in East Central Europe, CUP, 1998), but also the real social and political forces which have shaped the region's new capitalisms since 1989. These are either dismissed as "Market Maoist" allies of the Western financial organisations or, less often, far-right extremists.

The reality is more complex. For example, as has been pointed out many times—even by Andor and Summers themselves (p 162)—Václav Klaus' "Thatcherite" policies in the Czech Republic concealed a complex mix of free-market, nationalist and technocratic concerns in which the protection of jobs, living standards and national sovereignty held high priority. There is no reason to think that the impurity of Czech "neo-liberalism" was any exception.

Andor and Summers' political prognoses are as unconvincing as their comparisons. The idea that, just as in the 1930s, fascism and grim nationalist populism are lurking round the corner of economic collapse in Eastern Europe is a well-worn cliché—indeed, just the type of "racist stereotype perpetuated by intellectually Western commentators" (p 179) that the authors themselves warn against.

As Béla Greskovits points out in his highly impressive The Political Economy of Patience and Protest (CEU Press, 1998) (see review in CER), the key question posed by the return of capitalism to Central and Eastern Europe after 1989 is a quite different one: why there has been such a lack of effective social protest and popular radicalisation, compared with Latin America.

Notwithstanding Market Failure's overblown rhetoric of the 1990s as a "Weimar period," the reality throughout Central and Eastern Europe is that democratisation and marketisation have gone together, without one fatally undermining the other. Even the poorer and less stable states of Southeastern Europe, such as Romania or Bulgaria, seem unlikely to produce a Haider, let alone a Hitler.

Making Capitalism Without Capitalists: Class Formation and Elite Struggle in Post-Communist Central Europe
Gil Eyal, Iván Szelényi and Eleanor Townsley
(Verso ISBN 1859842216)

Making Capitalism Without Capitalists: Class Formation and Elite Struggle in Post-Communist Central EuropeThe social inequalities, relative poverty and low-quality democracy of the new capitalist democracies of Central and Eastern Europe are apparent for all to see. Can they be understood in a realistic and sophisticated way from a critical left-of-centre perspective? Many of the failures of Market Failure are made up for in Gil Eyal, Iván Szelényi and Eleanor Townsley's Making Capitalism Without Capitalists, a more academic, but also more readable book.

The book combines empirical surveys of evidence from research projects and the theoretical insights of Szelényi, whose interest in the evolving class structure of Central and Eastern Europe dates back to 1970, when he and György Konrád co-authored the highly influential Intellectuals on the Road to Class Power, forecasting the gradual takeover of state socialism by a new class of diploma-carrying technocrats. In returning to the big questions of social change first tackled by the 19th-century pioneers of social theory, Szelényi and his colleagues claim to be founding a new "neo-classical sociology."

The first great strength of Making Capitalism Without Capitalists is its clear comparative and historical framework, which is a marked contrast to the slapdash polemics of Summers and Andor. Firstly, the authors note, Central Europe's newly emerging post-Communist capitalism differs significantly from both the classic model of Western Europe and the rapacious "robber capitalism" now coming into being in the former Soviet Union.

Capitalism without capitalists

Whereas 18th- and 19th-century Western Europe saw large-property owners create the institutions of a market economy ("capitalism with capitalists"), post-Communist Russia has seen the emergence of powerful private property-owning oligarchs without meaningful market institutions ("capitalists without capitalism"). Post-Communist Central Europe, by contrast, has created the institutions of a market economy without creating a meaningful class of property owners ("capitalism without capitalists"). Instead of real capitalists, Central Europe has generated webs of cross-ownership, self-ownership and ineffective small shareholding via investment funds connected with state-owned banks.

The region's current "transition to the market" can also be understood in historical terms, the authors argue, as the latest in a series of projects spearheaded by the Central European intelligentsia, whose role as a substitute for an economically underdeveloped and politically reluctant middle class has been discussed elsewhere.

Having sought, in the 19th century, to lead the societies of Central Europe in a liberal-nationalist project aimed at emulating the advanced market economies and representative institutions of the West, the region's intelligentsia became radicalised after 1918 in seeking authoritarian forms of modernisation in fascism or (more often and more enduringly) Communism.

The emergence of "dissent" in the 1970s, Szelényi and his current co-authors now argue, represented the start of a gradual turning away of the intelligentsia from any possible accommodation with one-party state socialism—a process finally consummated after the collapse of Communism, when technocrats from the old system and liberal-democratic and "anti-political" dissidents outside it fused into a new political, cultural and economic elite.

In explaining this, the book draws on both Szelényi's earlier work and the ideas of the French sociologist Pierre Bourdieu concerning the relationship between property, status and education as forms of power (what Bourdieu refers to as economic, social and cultural capital). The events of 1989, argue Eyal, Szelényi and Townsley, therefore represented a shift from the dominance of "social capital," based upon administrative and political hierarchies of the party-state, to that of "cultural capital," embodied in the expertise and education of lawyers, economists, journalists and intellectuals-turned-politicians.

However, the key project of the new elite was the reconstitution of "economic capital" via the creation of capitalist market institutions and, ultimately, a fully-fledged property-owning bourgeoisie (Wirtschaftsbürgertum). The precise means by which a new class of capitalists might emerge—or indeed, whether one will emerge at all—is the book's main line of enquiry.

Like many sociologists with centre-left leanings, the authors reject the neo-liberal thesis that the peculiarities of Central and East European capitalism can be understood as a failure to transplant Western economic institutions quickly or thoroughly enough. At the same time, however, they reject the theory of a purely "path dependent" development, conditioned mainly by the various national legacies of Communism, popular among many Western area specialists on the region.

Winners in the new economic order

An analysis of survey data comparing economic, political and cultural elites and ownership structures in 1988 and 1993 in Poland, Hungary and the Czech Republic expands upon these purely theoretic propositions. Firstly, the popular stereotype of "nomenklatura capitalism," in which the Communist power-holders supposedly cashed in their political privileges for economic ones, is shown to be false. Pre-1989 Communist Party membership is a poor predictor of membership in post-Communist political, cultural and economic elites.

Thus, although the potential for nomenklatura-dominated "political capitalism" did exist in Central and Eastern Europe—as sociologists such as Elmer Honkiss and Jadwiga Staniszkis warned in the late 1980s—other processes quickly took over. The big winners in the new economic order appear to be those with technocratic and managerial skills. However, even here, despite using contacts and know-how to found lucrative "satellite firms" around privatised ex-state enterprises, their success is based less on ownership of capital than on controlling and managing resources.

Are there, then, any capitalists in the new Central European capitalism? The only really distinct owners are, the authors conclude firstly, the state and, secondly, foreign capital. A Central European bourgeoisie in the "hard" economic sense of the term thus still seems a distant prospect, and the "cultural capital" of intellectuals and technocrats seems destined to remain a more powerful, if less bankable, resource than it is in the West.

Despite a number of irritating factual errors in the discussion of countries other than Hungary,[5] Eyal, Szelényi and Townsley successfully realise the "outrageously immodest claims" (p 187) they make for "neo-classical sociology," offering big theoretical and empirical answers to big questions about the social and economic power in post-Communist Central and Eastern Europe.

However, as with Andors and Summers, their account of the politics of capitalism's Velvet Restoration in the region is wanting. Their account of dissident and technocratic politics, for example, sticks over-simplistic ideological labels on the two groups, and such things as elections or party politics are wholly absent from their account. In this case, this is due not to shoddy polemicising, but rather to the subtle sociological reductionism in their approach, which sees the key to political change in decoding underlying class structures.

Not Only the Market: The Role of the Market, Government and Civic Sector in the Development of Postcommunist Central Europe
Martin Potůček
(Central European University Press
ISBN 9639116513)

As the Czech title of Not Only the Market (Nejen trh: role trhu, státu a občanského sektoru v proměnách české společnosti), by the sociologist Martin Potůček, suggests, this book is a case study of the Czech Republic. It discusses a wide range of aspects of public policy in the Czech Republic in the 1990s from a broadly social democratic standpoint, combining theoretical arguments with examples of specific policy areas. As such, it is in effect a thinly veiled critique of the neo-liberal-inspired policies of the 1992-1997 Czech government of Václav Klaus. Potůček's key point is that the market, state and "civic sector" (voluntary organisations, civil society) are all indispensable to social development and must be made to work together through politics and public policy.

In the Czech context, where thinking about politics was hitherto framed by traditional concepts of "state" and "law," or the ill-defined and all-embracing terms such as "political studies" (politologie), Potůček's work, which introduced the new notion of "public policy," was ground-breaking. However, in English translation many of the book's arguments may seem curiously flat and uncontroversial.

Much of its structure and argumentation appears to assume that readers are dogmatic, but not particularly well-informed market liberals, for whom any positive conception for the state is anathema. Readers without this specific mindset, which was presumably that of the majority of Czech social science undergraduates when the Czech edition appeared as a student textbook in the mid-1990s, may find many of Potůček's more interesting ideas frustratingly underdeveloped. In particular, many non-Czech readers may consider the case studies of Czech public policy—some of which amount to only one or two lines—to be far too sparse. It is therefore a pity that the book was not more extensively revised and updated before its English publication by Central European University Press.

Written originally as a response to President Václav Havel's 1994 call for a "vision" about the "choice of society" facing the Czech Republic, Potůček's closely argued, but clearly partisan book may also surprise some readers in seeking to set out "impartial analysis" without "ideological contamination" (p xii). His suggestion that social scientists have a key role to play in the "technical" phase of policy-making, like "engineers determining the optimum slope of a highway or zoologists selecting the ideal components of animal feed" (p xiii), would seem to confirm many of the conclusions of Szelényi and his collaborators about the technocratic and lingering "anti-political" predispositions of Central Europe's current elites.

What can the Left offer?

What alternatives can the Left offer in and for Central and Eastern Europe? The three books reviewed here for their critical and intellectual bite have surprisingly little to say on the subject and almost nothing that is truly innovative. Although, in the early 1990s, Szelényi advocated a left-wing nationalist "Third Way" for Hungary based upon transformation of the "socialist middle class" of the Kadar era into a broad-based national bourgeoisie of small- and medium-property owners, as the findings of Making Capitalism Without Capitalists makes clear, this prospect—if it was ever realistic—has now disappeared. Moreover, Szelényi and his co-authors themselves draw no political conclusions from their latest innovative analysis.

Even if we accept the authors' arguments that the debate is no longer between capitalism and socialism, but between comparative capitalisms, their silence is disappointing. Andor and Summers are a little more forthcoming, noting that, although "a coherent alternative paradigm has yet to be consolidated ... there has to be an inevitable return to more centralised forms of macroeconomic management" (p 172) and "a redefinition of the relationship between the public and private sectors" (p 177).

In practice, this seems to mean a heavy dose of neo-Keynsianism, including a big role for industrial policy, job-sharing, wage controls and employment promotion and a bigger role for the trade unions and grassroots associations, such as credit unions and co-operatives. While such undertakings are worthy, they are hardly the "imaginative, innovatory policies" (p 177) Andor and Summers seem to believe, and given the 170-odd pages of fiery rhetoric blasting "Market Maoism" that precede them, they are—if refreshingly sensible—something of a damp squib.

Similar antidotes to neo-liberalism are proposed by Potůček, who unashamedly advocates a highly traditional corporatist model bringing together government, employers and organised labour as most appropriate to the Czech Republic's Central European traditions, social structure and political needs as a small post-Communist state which still has to undergo considerable social and political change in the coming decades. Although none of the authors say so—Andor and Summers because of their radical pretension, Potůček perhaps because of his "anti-ideological" expert stance—such thinking falls squarely within the tradition of conventional post-war European social democracy.

More original, perhaps, are some of Andor and Summers' incidental arguments. In their concluding chapter, they advocate "more attention ... to quality of life issues that conventional economic indicators do not capture" (p 173) and, perhaps related to this, a back-to-land policy of "sustainable, self-reliant rural repopulation" (p 187) for Central and Eastern Europe. However, much of their book is very much pitched in Old Left terms of "conventional economic indicators" such as production and employment, and both flashes of inspiration remain undeveloped and, in the second case, unexplained.

As the Hungarian thinker G M Tamás observed, "the mere idea of radical change (utopia and critique) has been dropped from the rhetorical vocabulary, and the political horizon is filled ... by what is given, which is capitalism."[6] The difficulties the authors of all three books have in going beyond critique and observation of the current "really existing capitalism" in Central and Eastern Europe confirm this and suggest that it may continue filling the political horizon for some time to come.

However, as a similarly provocative Central European thinker, the Czech Václav Bělohradský, suggested to CER in a recent interview (see "Realism in politics worries people."), in the longer term the Left can, and perhaps almost certainly will, re-invent itself as a force standing in defence of the everyday, the local, the national, the rooted and the untranslatable against the merciless mobility and flexibility of the new globalised capitalism.

Such a turn, which might in fact mean fusing many of the concerns of the Old Left and the traditional Right, has yet to materialise in any particularly clear form, either intellectually or politically. However, as protesters from across Europe converge on Prague to make this new, and as yet inchoate, voice of protest heard at the forthcoming IMF/World Bank summit, it seems that there is, after all, a spectre of anti-capitalism haunting Central Europe.

Seán Hanley, 25 September 2000

Seán Hanley is Lecturer in Politics at Brunel University, West London.

Moving on:

Links to works mentioned in the review


1. Perry Anderson, "Renewals," New Left Review January/February 2000.

2. Alex Callincos, The Revenge of History: Marxism and the East European Revolutions (Oxford: Polity Press, 1991).

3. An example being the reporting of the one-time far-left publication LM magazine, which claimed (wrongly) that TV footage of maltreated prisoners in Bosnian Serb detention camps had been faked.

4. Nigel Swain, Hungary: The Rise and Fall of Feasible Socialism (London: Verso, 1992). János Kornai, The Socialist System (Princeton: Princeton UP, 1992). The same is true of most contributions to Robin Blackburn (ed), After the Fall: The Failure of Communism and the Future of Socialism (London and New York: Verso, 1991).

5. For example, in discussing Czechoslovakia and the Czechs, the book wrongly states that free and fair elections in Czechoslovakia after World War II took place in 1948, whereas the correct date is 1946 (p 110); wrongly idenifies the Czech dissident who wrote under the pen name "Peter Fidelius" as Petr Pithart, rather than Karel Pálek (p 242); and refers to a non-existent "Czech Federal Republic" (p 238).

6. G M Tamás, "On Post-Fascism," Boston Review, vol 25, no 3, p 6.


Seán Hanley

Andrew Kotas
Steel Structures

Jan Čulík
Czech Depression

Andrew Stroehlein
Online Journalism

Mark Preskett
Moldova's Bad Luck

Gusztáv Kosztolányi
Fuelling Hungary

Mel Huang
Grave Diving

Sarah Whitmore
Ukraine's Constitution

Wojtek Kość
Jerzy Giedroyc (1906-2000)

Benjamin Halligan
Miloš Forman

Sam Vaknin
Dreamworld and Catastrophe

Press Reviews:
Oliver Craske
UK: Velvet Demonstrations?

Andrew Mrozek
Left Hanging

Culture Calendar:


CER eBookclub Members enter here