Making and Remaking the Balkans: Nations and States since 1878
With more than 25 years since the collapse of communism, the end of the wars and billions of dollars in aid, the Balkans are still characterized by corruption, state capture, and decidedly unmodern states that are often either weak or authoritarian. Taking the contemporary Balkans as a starting point, Making and Remaking the Balkans studies the region’s history combined with observations based on more than twenty years of field experience.
Primarily concerned with current issues in the Balkans since 1989, this book explains why the region has endured such a prolonged and fraught transition to democracy and eventual membership in the European Union. The young and educated have largely left. Governmental crisis and economic stagnation is the norm and much-needed regional cooperation has been suppressed by renewed nationalism. Wars on corruption have proved to be largely rhetorical. Making and Remaking the Balkans offers a systematic study of the issues the entire region faces as it struggles to complete the European integration process at a time when the European Union faces bigger problems elsewhere.
- Series: Munk Series on Global Affairs
- World Rights
- Page Count: 232 pages
- Dimensions: 6.5in x 0.8in x 9.3in
Reviews“This book’s strengths lie in its easy-to-read prose and frankness about the problems faced by the region, be it borders, ethnicity or the widescale corruption continuing to hold it back. Austin’s many unique and eyewitness accounts also add value to this text. Making and Remaking the Balkans is useful and insightful for anyone new to or interested in the region, particularly undergraduates of business and public policy.”
James C. Pearce, University of Liverpool
Eurasian Geography and Economics
"To call modern Balkan history complicated is a euphemism. Austin navigates the reader through the volatile politics of Balkan state-building. He makes a crucial point: while the people of the region crave normality, political elites again and again fail them. European integration of the region is the only remedy. Garnished with unique insights from Austin’s many travels to the region, the book provides essential reading for anyone interested in this part of Europe."
Ulf Brunnbauer, Leibniz Institute for East and Southeast European Studies, Regensburg, Germany
"If you want to make sense of today’s Europe, the best thing you can do is read history, and in particular good books on the history of the Balkans. Robert Austin has written exactly such a book. It is well informed, sympathetic but not sentimental, a book that allows us to see the past in the present. It is a book by someone who has made understanding the Balkans his intellectual vocation."
Ivan Krastev, Institute for Human Sciences, Vienna, Austria
Author InformationRobert C. Austin is an associate professor at the Munk School of Global Affairs at the University of Toronto.
Table of contents
1 Making Nations and States
2 Good News, Bad News: Before and After 1989
3 Hero-Free Wars and Ethnic Purity
4 Albania Implodes, Kosovo Arms
5 Contested Heroes: Alexander the Great, Mother Teresa, and the Republic of Macedonia
6 To Europe, for Some: Slovenia, Bulgaria, Romania, and Croatia
Epilogue: Greater This or Greater That, Alone or in Europe
Guide to Further Readings
Subjects and Courses