Contemporary Europe: Histories and Identities. Introduction

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One of the more dubious benefits of Europe’s prolonged division into Eastern and Western blocs after the World War II was ease of geographical identification. Even if both blocs contained their own renegade and peripheral states, questions of national identity and loyalty were easily answered with reference to the hard historical reality of the Iron Curtain which ran down the middle of the continent.Whether one dates the end of the great divide to the fall of the Berlin Wall ten years ago, or concurs with Eric Hobsbawm that it was the collapse of Soviet communism in 1991 that brought the twentieth century to its premature end, it is certain that geopolitical and mental maps of Europe have become more complex.Histories and identities have been recast in a manner which is breathtaking in scope and rapidity.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-2
JournalAustralian Journal of Politics & History
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 1999
Externally publishedYes


  • Europe
  • History
  • 20th century
  • Geopolitics
  • Western Bloc
  • Eastern Bloc
  • Soviet Union


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