Uncertain Transition: Ethnographies of Change in the Postsocialist World

Uncertain Transition: Ethnographies of Change in the Postsocialist World

by Michael Burawoy
     
 

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The ethnographies collected here offer a surprising and compelling picture of change in Russia and Eastern Europe found in no other book to date. Looking at the everyday processes by which individuals and groups forge new lives, the authors challenge the idea that we can understand this transformation by the predictable models—whether capitalism,

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Overview

The ethnographies collected here offer a surprising and compelling picture of change in Russia and Eastern Europe found in no other book to date. Looking at the everyday processes by which individuals and groups forge new lives, the authors challenge the idea that we can understand this transformation by the predictable models—whether capitalism, post-socialism, modernity, or postmodernity. The collection brings together a wide-ranging group of authors from sociology, anthropology, and political science to reveal the complex relationships that still exist between the former socialist world and the world today. Through evocative ethnographic research and writing, they bring to light the unintended consequences of change and show how the "slates" of the past enter the present not as legacies—but as novel adaptations. Often what appear as "restorations" of patterns familiar from socialism are something quite different: direct responses to the new market initiatives. By showing the unexpected ways in which these new patterns are emerging, this book charts a new and important course for the study of post-socialist transition.

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Editorial Reviews

Slavic and East European Journal
An excellent introduction to the current social and political changes in Eastern Europe. Although it presents an academic discussion, I strongly suggest that business people and those who plan to work in Eastern Europe should glance at it, for it offers an excellent insight into the mentality of societies with which they might work.
American Journal of Sociology
The studies in the Burawoy and Verdery volume put flesh on this argument, providing an inconvertible demonstration of the importance of ethnographic research for the development of social theory as well as invaluable material for thhose seeking to find some coherence in the "uncertain transition."

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780847690428
Publisher:
Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
Publication date:
01/28/1999
Pages:
330
Product dimensions:
6.30(w) x 9.28(h) x 0.92(d)

Meet the Author

Michael Burawoy is professor of sociology at the University of California, Berkeley. Katherine Verdery is professor of anthropology at the University of Michigan.

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