Explaining Eastern Europe: The Crisis of Liberalism

July 2018

Thirty years ago in Central and Eastern Europe, belief in an open society and a sense of reasserted national and indeed European identity seemed to go hand-in-hand. But that was then.

The Specter Haunting Europe: Surging Illiberalism in the East

October 2016

The crisis of liberal democracy is Europe-wide, but it has assumed an especially intense form in Central and Eastern Europe.

Hungary’s Illiberal Turn: How Things Went Wrong

July 2012

How has Hungary, initially seen as a leading postcommunist success story, fallen into its current troubles?

In Praise of Václav Havel

July 2010

A tribute to Václav Havel, Czech playwright and former dissident, who became not only president but the symbol of the “velvet revolutions.”

Twenty Years of Postcommunism: In Search of A New Model

January 2010

In the twenty years since 1989, acute excitement over democratic transition and consolidation gave way to symptoms of “democracy fatigue” and elite exhaustion; successful economic transition away from state socialism fell victim to a crisis of the free-market model; and the EU’s transformative power has reached its geopolitical limits. The nations of Central and Eastern Europe successfully imitated a model that is now in crisis. Like the rest of the world, they currently find themselves in search of a new democratic paradigm.

Is East-Central Europe Backsliding? From Democracy Fatigue to Populist Backlash

October 2007

The populist backlash against corruption, the CEE transition-era elites, and the liberal consensus has led to a democratic crisis, but does not portend systemic change.

Europe Moves Eastward: Concluding Reflections

January 2004

The fall of the Berlin Wall gave East Europeans a euphoric sense that they were about to give European democacy a new direction. But as many of their countries prepare to join the EU, little has worked out as expected in those heady days.

Eastern Europe: The International Context

April 2000

Nowhere else has the impact of international factors on democratization been as apparent as in Central and Eastern Europe. Integration into European and Euro-Atlantic structures is one particularly strong democratizing force.

The Postcommunist Divide

January 1999