Will democracy survive in the post-Communist states of East-Central Europe and Russia? The book seeks to answer this great question by identifying the factors associated with the success and failure of previous attempts at democratization in Europe. A historical and comparative approach, focusing on a series of important case-studies, illuminates the issues at stake.The case-studies are located within four key periods in the history of European democratization since 1800: the `successful' examples of Britain and the Netherlands are taken from the first wave in nineteenth-century Western and Northern Europe; the second, post-Versailles stage of advance and retreat, is considered in two celebrated cases of failure - the German Weimar Republic and the Spanish Second Republic; the case of West Germany is analysed as a feature of the third post-1945 phase; and the problematic fate of the post-Communist states of East-Central Europe and Russia dominates the post-1989 years.

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