The books under review exemplify some of the finest recent work on the historically informed political economy of Central and Eastern Europe. While different in their conceptual frameworks and geographical foci, the titles converge in the advancement of nuanced and convincing arguments, displaying both theoretical acuity and empirical depth to great effect. Bartel, Fabry, and Pula all share a resolute dedication to illuminating the under-explored provenances of neoliberalism and/or globalization in the region, that predate the annus mirabilis of 1989. Their contributions situate the ‘Eastern bloc’ states within the contours of evolving global political economy and the existential crises engulfing capitalism and ‘actually existing socialism’ during the 1970s and beyond. The authors expound on the intricate web of global capital accumulation, geopolitical competition, and skillful diplomatic strategy, which served to dismantle the ‘Iron Curtain’. Two contributions further assess the postscripts of the 1989 revolutions.
Salyga, J. (2023). The Provenances and Postscripts of 1989. Thesis Eleven, 0(0). https://doi.org/10.1177/07255136231199829