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Located on the eastern shore of the Baltic Sea, Latvia did not emerge as an independent country until the twentieth century, having been occupied at different times in the past by its larger neighbors: Russia, Germany, Poland, and Sweden. In 1993, Latvia held its first parliamentary election and elected its first president after 50 years of a Communist dictatorship. With the entrance of Latvia in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization and the European Union in 2004, the "post-Communist" era appears to be over. The first edition of the Historical Dictionary of Latvia was written shortly after the liberation of the country from the U.S.S.R. when much about the country's future seemed uncertain. The new edition details the changes the country has undergone since and tells the turbulent history of Latvia through a chronology, an introductory essay, a bibliography, an appendix, and several hundred cross-referenced dictionary entries on important persons, places, and events.
About the Author
Andrejs Plakans is emeritus professor of history at Iowa State University. He has served on committees of the American Association for the Advancement of Slavic Studies, the American Historical Association, and the Social Science History Association. In 1992, he was a fellow at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, Washington, D.C., and since 1990 he has been a foreign member of the Academy of Sciences of Latvia.
Table of ContentsEditor’s Foreword Jon Woronoff
Acronyms and Abbreviations
Appendix: Past and Present Governments of the Territory of Contemporary Latvia
About the Author