The Grooves of Change is the culmination of J. F. Brown's esteemed career as an analyst of Eastern Europe. He traces events in this diverse and disruption-riddled region from the communist era to the years of transition after the fall of the Berlin Wall to the present. Brown also provides specific analyses of the development of liberal democratic culture in the former communist countries of Eastern EuropeAlbania, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Poland, Romania, and the successor states of Yugoslavia.
While acknowledging that the term "Eastern Europe" began to fall into disuse with the end of the cold war, Brown uses it as a framework for discussing the enduring features of the modern history of this region: its basic continuity, the prominence of ethnic and national factors, and its dependence on great powers or combinations of powers outside it. He explains the significance of the growing gulf between East Central Europe and South Eastern Europe, the overall political and economic deprivation and its effect on the people, the urgency of change, and the complex dynamics within Eastern Europe that have defied definitions and generalization. Finally, Brown points to the need for continuing assistance by the United States and the West and suggests what the twenty-first century may bring to this constantly changing part of the world.
Those seeking a clear overview of events in Eastern Europe during the recent psat and the state of these nations now will benefit from this incisive study by J. F. Brown.