Stabilising Fragile Democracies: Comparing New Party Systems in Southern and Eastern Europe


The recent history of both Southern and Eastern Europe has demonstrated the key role that political parties play in the establishment of new parliamentary democracy. Political parties often form as a result of opposition to previously authoritarian regimes, and their performance during a transition period gives an excellent indication of the nature and prospects of democracy. This is the first book to provide a systematic comparison of the democratic transitions of Eastern and Southern Europe. It does so with the aid of four case studies from each region, written by regional specialists. The countries covered include Italy, Spain, Greece, Portugal, Hungary, Romania, Poland and Bulgaria. Within a comparative framework the authors discuss the central questions of how democratic parties and political elites form, how alliances and coalitions are built, how parties cope with their inheritance and develop new identities and how they behave during elections. Stabilising Fragile Democracies provides both an invaluable guide to recent events in Southern and Eastern Europe and a means to understanding the process of democratization.

Additional information

Includes content by:
  • Geoffrey Pridham
  • Paul Lewis
  • Michael Waller
  • Attila Ágh
  • Maurizio Cotta
Publisher: Place of publication:
  • New York
Publication year:
  • 1996


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