The breakup of Czechoslovakia, when the Czechs and Slovaks fell victim to the "narcissism of minor differences," was one of the most surprising developments of the post-Communist transition in Eastern Europe. 1 Political scientists initially thought that a united Czechoslovakia had the best chance of making a smooth transition to democracy. Indeed, the Civic Forum, an ad hoc coalition of heterogeneous elements that had formed during the November Revolution in 1989 in the Czech lands and its Slovakian equivalent, had won a sweeping victory in the first wave of elections in 1990. 2 Its leader, Vaclav Havel, was elected president of Czechoslovakia on December 29, 1989, and then president for a two year term in June, 1990.

As was the case in other East European states undergoing the political transition, there was a considerable fragmentation of the political spectrum. Close to 60 political parties emerged, including such novelties as the Friends of Beer party. In the years after the revolution, a disintegration of the great anti-Communist coalitionsthe Civic Form and the Public Against Violence--took place. By the time the second wave of national elections took place, the political scene in the Czech republic was dominated by more pragmatic forces led by Vaclav Klaus, who created a center-right political party from within the Civic Forum. Klaus was an economist and former finance minister who favored shock therapy. Klaus' Civic Democratic Party


Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Cite this page

Cited page

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Change in Eastern Europe


Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen
/ 186

matching results for page

Cited passage

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?