In this book, the author argues that the current predicament of millions of Eastern Europeans is only partly due to the imposition of the Soviet system, and that they are in fact the heirs of misfortune which dates back centuries.
Longworth (history, McGill U.) searches for the origins of Eastern Europe's backwardness and the reasons for its difficult adaptation to democracy, in a sweeping history that ranges from the time of Constantine to the present, from the Urals to the Mediterranean and the Baltic, and emphasizes culture and society as well as politics and economics. His analysis provides a long-term background to the current problems facing Eastern Europe, and is suitable for general readers as well as students and specialists. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)