Historical Legacies and the Radical Right in Post–Cold War Central and Eastern Europe

Edited by Michael Minkenberg. Foreword by Sabrina P. Ramet

ibidem Press

Historical Legacies and the Radical Right in Post–Cold War Central and Eastern Europe

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Pub Date: August 2010

ISBN: 9783838201245

208 Pages

Format: Paperback

List Price: $46.00

Pub Date: August 2010

ISBN: 9783838261249

208 Pages

Format: E-book

List Price: $30.99

Historical Legacies and the Radical Right in Post–Cold War Central and Eastern Europe

Edited by Michael Minkenberg. Foreword by Sabrina P. Ramet

ibidem Press

The transformation process in Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) after 1989 is often clothed in terms of historical and geographical categories, either as a 'return of history' or as a 'return to Europe', or both. Either way, the radical right in CEE claims a prominent place in this politics of return. Studies of the radical right echo the more general concern, in analyses of the region, with historical analogies and the role of legacies. Sometimes parallels are discovered between the post-1989 radical right and interwar fascism. They imply a 'Weimarization' of the transformation countries and the return of the pre-socialist, ultranationalist, or even fascist past—the 'return of history'. Another interpretation argues that since some CEE party systems increasingly resemble their West European counterparts, so does the radical right, at least where it is electorally successful - the 'return to Europe'. A third line of thought states that the radical right in the region is a phenomenon sui generis, inherently shaped by the historical forces of state socialism and the transformation process. As a result, and in contrast to Western Europe, it is ideologically more extreme and anti-democratic while organizationally more a movement than a party phenomenon. This book provides insight into the role of historical forces in the shaping and performance of the current radical right in CEE. It conceptualizes 'legacies' both as a contextual factor, i.e. as part of structural and cultural opportunities for new movements and parties in the region, and as textual factors, i.e. as part of the ideological baggage of the past which is revived—and reinterpreted—by the radical right. An introductory essay by Michael Minkenberg puts the topic and the concept of legacies into a larger research perspective. Articles by Lenka Bustikova and Herbert Kitschelt as well as John Ishiyama employ the role of legacies as context, whereas the contributions by Timm Beichelt, Sarah de Lange and Simona Guerra as well as James Frusetta and Anca Glont treat legacies as text.
Each chapter in this publication represents a very interesting piece of scholarship, and together, the texts form a volume that examines the role of historical legacies in influencing the emergence and success of the radical right in post-communist Europe. e-Extreme
List of Contributors
Acknowledgments
Leninist beneficiaries? Pre-1989 legacies and the radical right in post-1989 Central and Eastern Europe: some introductory observations, by Michael Minkenberg
The radical right in post-communist Europe: Comparative perspectives on legacies and party competition, by Lenka Bustikova and Herbert Kitschelt
Historical legacies and the size of the red-brown vote in post-communist politics, by John Ishiyama
Two variants of the Russian radical right: Imperial and social nationalism, by Timm Beichelt
The League of Polish Families between East and West, past and present, by Sarah L. de Lange and Simona Guerra
Interwar fascism and the post-1989 radical right: Ideology, opportunism and historical legacy in Bulgaria and Romania, by James Frusetta and Anca Glont
Afterword – Modalities of fear: The radical right in Eastern Europe, by Sabrina P. Ramet

About the Author

Michael Minkenberg studied political science, history, and economics in Heidelberg, Freiburg i. Br., Bonn, and at Georgetown University in Washington DC. Currently, he is Professor of Comparative Politics at the European University Viadrina in Frankfurt/Oder and holds the Max Weber Chair for German and European Studies at New York University.

Dr. Sabrina P. Ramet is Professor of Political Science at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim.