Postcommunism has joined the list of terms like postmodernity and postcolonialism that defines the spirit of our age. Designed for undergraduate courses and an essential reference for those more familiar with the field, this authoritative text examines the validity and ramifications of the concept and places it in the broader context of global change. The emergence of communism was accompanied by the development of a critical body of thinking that questioned the basic assumptions of revolutionary socialism and that ultimately proved to be communism's downfall. Sakwa shows how the apparent exhaustion of the revolutionary socialist alternative poses new challenges to the hegemony of the capitalist order itself. He examines the historical origins of postcommunism and its practice in countries that had previously been communist, and situates it in a larger theoretical perspective, focusing on the challenge of finding adequate forms for political and national community in an increasingly fragmented world.
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