POLb1141 Post-communist politics

Faculty of Social Studies
Spring 2022
Extent and Intensity
1/1/0. 6 credit(s). Type of Completion: zk (examination).
doc. Marek Rybář, M.A., Ph.D. (lecturer)
Guaranteed by
doc. Marek Rybář, M.A., Ph.D.
Department of Political Science – Faculty of Social Studies
Contact Person: Mgr. Lucie Pospíšilová
Supplier department: Department of Political Science – Faculty of Social Studies
Mon 16:00–17:40 U34
Course Enrolment Limitations
The course is also offered to the students of the fields other than those the course is directly associated with.
The capacity limit for the course is 25 student(s).
Current registration and enrolment status: enrolled: 0/25, only registered: 0/25, only registered with preference (fields directly associated with the programme): 0/25
fields of study / plans the course is directly associated with
there are 25 fields of study the course is directly associated with, display
Course objectives
The region of "post-Communist Europe" supplies a rich variation of countries' economic and political performance: Some states are politically stable and have relatively strong economies, others are more prone to internal conflicts and experience democratic backsliding. This course is designed to help explain this variation. Topics include the nature of the old regime and its breakdown, the transitions to democracy and market economy, entry into NATO and the European Union, the role of ethnic politics, democratic backsliding, and the role of international factors.
Learning outcomes
Upon completion of this course, students will be able to:
Conceptualize the influence of social, economic, and political legacies of the pre-communist and communist eras on the post-communist development.
Identify the major manifestations of democratic erosion in the region.
Explain the benefits and limitations of various institutional arrangements for democratic consolidation socio-economic stability.
Discuss the role of international factors on political and economic development of the post-communist region.
  • Historical Legacies in Central and Eastern Europe
  • State Socialism and its Collapse
  • Parameters of Political and Economic Transition
  • Dealing with the Communist Past
  • Electoral Revolutions: Defeating Autocratic Incumbents
  • Voters and Parties in Central and Eastern Europe
  • Minorities and Identity Politics
  • Disillusionment with Liberal Democracy?
  • Democratic Backsliding: Poland and Hungary
  • The Role of International Factors: EU Accession and NATO Expansion
  • The Role of International Factors: Russia
    required literature
  • Central and East European politics : from communism to democracy. Edited by Sharon L. Wolchik - Jane Leftwich Curry. Fourth edition. London: Rowman & Littlefield, 2018, xii, 570. ISBN 9781538100882. info
  • ELSTER, Jon, Claus OFFE and Ulrich K. PREUSS. Institutional design in post-communist societies : rebuilding the ship at sea. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1998, xii, 350. ISBN 0521479312. info
  • BUNCE, Valerie and Sharon L. WOLCHIK. Defeating authoritarian leaders in postcommunist countries. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2011, xi, 373. ISBN 9780521187251. info
  • Return to diversity : a political history of East Central Europe since World War II. Edited by Joseph Rothschild - Nancy M. Wingfield. 4th ed. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2008, xii, 274. ISBN 9780195334753. URL info
Teaching methods
lectures, class discussion, documentary movies,
Assessment methods
The grade for this course will be based on one midterm exam (30%), a research paper (40%), class activity (15%), and one in-class presentation (15%).
Language of instruction
Further Comments
Study Materials
The course is taught annually.
Listed among pre-requisites of other courses
The course is also listed under the following terms Spring 2021.
  • Enrolment Statistics (recent)
  • Permalink: https://is.muni.cz/course/fss/spring2022/POLb1141