Baltic Facadesby Aldis Purs
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The three so-called 'Baltic states' - Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania - are commonly regarded by outsiders as a single entity. In reality, these are separate, quite distinct countries, each continually struggling to find their own place within Europe whilst preserving their local identity. Baltic Facades presents a radical new reading of the region, one that dispels the myth of a single, coherent Baltic identity. Instead Aldis Purs takes account of the uniqueness of each of these countries, whilst also examining the shared anxiety that the people of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania feel about their own identities and how others see them. Purs locates the three countries within the larger context of European history, stressing their similarities with the rest of the continent rather than their differences. Giving equal weight to developments in politics, economics, and social and cultural trends, Purs develops a thematic framework that places contemporary events in a longer perspective than traditional Cold War inspired views of the region. This title will appeal to the intellectually curious reader, one who seeks an account of the Baltic nations that provides a strong sense of place and goes beyond the confines of traditional political history.
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