• ‘89: The Unfinished Revolution. Power and Powerlessness in Eastern Europe’ by Nick Thorpe
Paperback, 320 pages, 16 colour plates, Reportage Press (9 November 2009), ISBN-10: 1906702179, ISBN-13: 978-1906702175
‘The Unfinished Revolution’ presents a personal view, from ground level, of a revolution which never quite finished. Of how it re-emerges, in demonstrations and uprisings, on a regular basis. How the demons of the past – of collaboration, of unsatisfied national identity, above all of poverty – continue to haunt the present. With the victory of democracy in Eastern Europe in 1989, the author’s work was only just beginning. Thorpe guides us through the dramas and traumas of the 1990s, the years of ‘jungle capitalism’, through a taxi blockade in Hungary, and the miners’ invasion of Bucharest. The book concludes in 2009, with the impact of the crisis of capitalism, 20 years after the crisis of communism.
Nick Thorpe began reporting from Budapest in February 1986, the first western journalist to be based there. For the BBC, the Independent, and the Observer, he covered the dying years of eastern Europe’s regimes, then the revolutions which toppled them. He witnessed the collapse of Yugoslavia, popular uprisings in Bulgaria and Serbia, the transformation of nonviolent to violent resistance in Kosovo. As the BBC’s Central Europe correspondent he continues to report the successes, and the failures of a revolution which never quite reaches its goal.
’89: The Unfinished Revoution’ is available to buy from Amazon.co.uk and Waterstones.com (RRP £12.99), or in person from the Romanian Cultural Centre for the special price of £10 (limited availability).