The authors of this book have developed a new and stimulating approach to the analysis of the transitions of Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Hungary, and Slovakia to democracy and a market economy. They integrate interdisciplinary theoretical work with elaborate empirical data on some of the most challenging events of the twentieth century. Three groups of phenomena and their causal interconnection are explored: the material legacies, constraints, habits and cognitive frameworks inherited from the past; the erratic configuration of new actors, and new spaces for action; and a new institutional order under which agency is institutionalized and the sustainability of institutions is achieved. The book studies the interrelations of national identities, economic interests, and political institutions with the transformation process, concentrating on issues of constitution making, democratic infrastructure, the market economy, and social policy.
"New, interesting material." Comparative Politics "...a praiseworthy effort...Graduate level and above." Choice "...the substantive chapters are well crafted, detailed, and informative about such matters as the writing of constitutions, the working of electoral systems, the privatization of the economy, and the restructuring of the welfare states." Andrew C. Janos, Slavic Review