The Baltic Transformed: Complexity Theory and European Security / Edition 320

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Overview

Why isn't the Baltic region like the Balkans? Why have the Baltic republics not experienced ethnic cleansing, border wars, authoritarian rule, and social chaos? Instead, peace, democracy, and market economies have taken root since the fall of communism. Walter C. Clemens, Jr. here uses complexity theory, which analyzes the role of self-organization in complex adaptive systems, to explain the "Baltic miracle." He argues that the theory is a vital tool for understanding the remarkable strides made by Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania since 1991 in coping with the transition to partnership with the new Europe. The Baltic peoples have adapted well to the demands of democracy, a market economy, and a constructive role in world affairs. The achievements of Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania in the past decade are the more amazing when considered against the hundreds of years they were dominated by Teutonic knights, Hanseatic merchants, Sweden, Russia, and the USSR. Clemens uses this history as a springboard to analyze how Balts self-organize today to meet the challenges of transition. One of the first books to apply complexity theory to a major sphere of world politics, The Baltic Transformed will provoke constructive debate with its ambitious and well-grounded analysis of not only Baltic developments but European security more generally. Despite its theoretical foundation, the book is written in a clear and accessible style that will make it invaluable for courses on comparative politics, political development, international relations, security, or transition studies.

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Editorial Reviews

America: The National Catholic Weekly
The Baltic Transformed...gives the best available introduction to Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania today, while at the same time presenting cogent arguments for the importance of studying these three countries in the 21st century. The book also provides a valuable history of the Baltic in the 1990’s.
— Guntis ?midchens
Russian Review - Martha Merritt
An authoritative account of the successful Baltic transition…studded with pithy observation and historically rooted insight….Clemens' sweeping command of the region allows for a nuanced treatment of all three small but complex countries.
Slavic Review - Anton Steen
Provides interesting analyses of how the Baltic societies mastered the challenges of foreign domination. . . . Rich with data, reflections, and perspectives.
America: The National Catholic Review - Guntis ?midchens
The Baltic Transformed...gives the best available introduction to Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania today, while at the same time presenting cogent arguments for the importance of studying these three countries in the 21st century. The book also provides a valuable history of the Baltic in the 1990’s.
East European Politics and Societies and Cultures
Beyond presenting a new way to look at the world, Clemens has provided readers with an excellent resource to study a region of the world that should receive more analysis then it does.
Millennium
Clemens provides a detailed societal-wide overview of the transition of the Baltic States since 1991. Rather than limiting himself to political and economic developments, Clemens also focuses on broader issues of health, education, social institutions, minority and citizenship questions, the environment, crime, and differences in generational perceptions. Particularly interesting is his analysis of how the Balts worked within the Soviet system in order to exit it.
East European Politics and Societies
Beyond presenting a new way to look at the world, Clemens has provided readers with an excellent resource to study a region of the world that should receive more analysis then it does.
Russian Review
An authoritative account of the successful Baltic transition…studded with pithy observation and historically rooted insight….Clemens' sweeping command of the region allows for a nuanced treatment of all three small but complex countries.
— Martha Merritt
Slavic Review
Provides interesting analyses of how the Baltic societies mastered the challenges of foreign domination. . . . Rich with data, reflections, and perspectives.
— Anton Steen
Booknews
Clemens (political science, Boston University) applies complexity theory to the history of Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania in order to explain the post-Soviet emergence of peaceful relations, parliamentary democracy, and market economies. Chapters consider the importance of self-organization, the nature of the Baltic revolution, social capital, human development, ethnic integration, interdependence, security, and the new relationship with Russia. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
America: The National Catholic Weekly
The Baltic Transformed...gives the best available introduction to Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania today, while at the same time presenting cogent arguments for the importance of studying these three countries in the 21st century. The book also provides a valuable history of the Baltic in the 1990’s.
— Guntis ?midchens
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780847698592
  • Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
  • Publication date: 5/15/2001
  • Series: New International Relations of Europe Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 320
  • Pages: 320
  • Product dimensions: 5.74 (w) x 9.04 (h) x 0.69 (d)

Meet the Author

Walter C. Clemens, Jr., is professor of political science at Boston University and an associate at Harvard's Center for Science and International Affairs and the Davis Center for Russian Studies.

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Table of Contents

Chapter 1 Coping with Complexity: Alternative Explanations Chapter 2 Self-Organization versus Autocracy: Crusaders to Commissars Chapter 3 Nonviolent Revolution: How Three Davids Undermined Goliath Chapter 4 Creating Good Government: Who Won What When? Chapter 5 Self-Organization and Social Capital Chapter 6 Human Development: Winners, Losers, and the Internet Chapter 7 Integration: Coping with Ethnic Complexity Chapter 8 Energy for a New Life: From Dependency to Interdependence Chapter 9 Tigers on the Baltic: Can the Small Be Fit? Chapter 10 Russia: Threat or Partner? Chapter 11 Enhancing Baltic Security: NATO and Other Options, 2000–2010 Chapter 12 Baltic Fitness, European Security, and International Relations: What Does Complexity Theory Explain?

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