During a set of oral history interviews conducted in Braşov, Romania, in the summer of 2003, “C,” “E,” “O,” “M,” and “L” discuss how the transition to a democratic system and a market economy have impacted politics, the economy, and women’s professional and everyday lives. Their reflections offer insights into the varied ways that women have been affected by, and perceive….
In this oral history interview conducted in Braşov, Romania, during the summer of 2003, “E” discusses traveling under Socialism. She notes that, despite the fact that the country was led by an uneducated dictator, people—that is working people—always received a two week, state-subsidized vacation. Since this benefit is no longer guaranteed by the State, a number of women felt this….
During a series of oral history interviews conducted in Braşov, Romania, during the summer of 2003, “S” and “M” discuss the various strategies they used to procure food and concoct meals for their families during the period of rationing in the 1980s. Meanwhile “E” offers insight into Romanian hospitality, stressing that even in the midst of mass shortages, women managed to lay out….
During a set of oral history interviews conducted in Braşov, Romania, during the summer of 2003, “F” and “R” talk about rearing children under Socialism. For “F” it was a mixed-blessing, since she adored her infant son, yet had to do so under less than optimal conditions. While for “F,” caring for her son was a chore as a result of the manifold shortages in the 1980s, for….
In this collection of oral histories, “V” and “L” reflect on marital relations under socialism. According to “V,” men’s upbringing in the family played a fundamental role in shaping their attitudes toward wives. Thus it would seem that socialist policy and propaganda that promoted equality between women and men had little effect on men’s attitudes toward women—though they….
In this collection of oral histories from Romania, subjects “R,” “I,” “M,” “E,” and “N” talk about their experiences of work during the socialist period. Although “R” and “M” worked in male-dominated fields and faced harassment by their male colleagues, “M” was able to overcome these difficulties by playing the role of the oddball woman. Meanwhile, “I”….
A medieval historian by training, Bronisław Geremek had emerged by the 1980s as one of the Solidarity movement’s leading strategists. At the Round Table talks between Solidarity and the Communist leadership and in the critical months that followed, he was arguably Lech Wałęsa’s most influential advisor. In this interview, published in 1990, a young Solidarity-affiliated journalist asks….
This interview with V. Kamalov, minister of internal affairs of the Uzbek Soviet Socialist Republic, echoes a perception similar to that of S.A. Niyazov, the Communist Party leader of Turkmenistan, in a related document, which attributes a sense of disorder to the expression of political perspectives.
To see the associated Teaching….
Following the fall of Nicolea Ceausescu's regime in December 1989, violence among the various ethnic groups in Romania noticeably increased. In particular, the Roma (colloquially, the Gypsies) were the target of violent persecutions throughout Romania during the spring and summer of 1990. With the escalation of ethnic violence in nearby Yugoslavia, human rights groups became actively concerned….
Following the fall of Nicolea Ceausescu's regime in December 1989, violence among the various ethnic groups in Romania noticeably increased. In particular, the Roma (colloquially, the Gypsies) were the target of violent persecutions throughout Romania during the spring and summer of 1990. Following a series of anti-government demonstrations in the Romanian capital, Bucharest, on 13-14 June….
The ethnic Turks living in Bulgaria had faced discrimination throughout Bulgaria's history. In May 1989, throughout the Turkish areas of Bulgaria, there were a series of peaceful demonstrations staged by the Turkish minority; in some cases, entire villages joined the protests. They protested for the rights to have their Turkish names restored, or to be able to receive an education free from….
The ethnic Turks living in Bulgaria had faced discrimination throughout Bulgaria's history. In May 1989, there were a series of peaceful demonstrations staged by the Turkish minority; in some cases, entire villages joined the protests. They protested for the rights to have their Turkish names restored or to be able to receive an education free from discrimination. While each of these protests….
As part of a public demonstration of support for the newly-elected governments in Eastern Europe, the United Kingdom's Prime Minister, Margaret Thatcher, traveled throughout the region in September 1990. Not only did this provide her an opportunity to discuss important matters for Britain's foreign policy but also she could use the attention she brought with Western journalists to allow the new….
In May 1988, President Ronald Reagan traveled to the Soviet Union for a summit meeting with Mikhail Gorbachev. While in Moscow, he addressed a group of students at Moscow State University, using this forum as a chance to publicly announce his support for the Gorbachev's ongoing reform efforts. In this excerpt of his speech, he condemns the opponents of Gorbachev's reforms, and uses a popular….
Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev initiated the October 1986 weekend summit at Reykjavik, Iceland with President Ronald Reagan after progress in arms negotiations had slowed following their first meeting in Geneva the previous November. At the conclusion of two days of intense bargaining in what they had described only as an “interim summit” prior to a more substantial proposed meeting in….
US President George H. W. Bush and Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev held their first summit early in December 1989 onboard a Soviet cruise ship docked off the coast of Malta. Prior to arriving, Gorbachev wondered if he would be able to establish a relationship of trust with Bush as he had achieved with other Western leaders, since information coming into the Kremlin indicated that Bush’s….
Soon after President George H. W. Bush learned the news that the Berlin Wall had opened allowing East Germans to crossover into West Berlin, his press secretary convened an impromptu press conference in the Oval Office. Bush’s wary responses to reporters’ questions, included in the excerpt below, left an impression that he was less than moved by the historic event. The Washington….
Joint News Conference Following Discussions With Chancellor Helmut Kohl of the Federal Republic of Germany
On February 25, 1990, President George H. W. Bush and West German Chancellor Helmut Kohl met for meetings at Camp David. Their discussions included German unification, European integration, arms control, and the situation in Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union, as well as other foreign policy issues of joint concern. It is clear from the statements made by both Bush and Kohl that the unsettled….
During the spring of 1989, the leaders of the United States and the Soviet Union, George H. W. Bush and Mikhail Gorbachev, issued contrasting visions for the future of Europe. In a series of speeches during April and May, Bush called for a Europe “whole and free” and envisioned a shift “beyond containment,” the fundamental strategy of preventing Soviet expansion that had guided US….
In the summer of 1989, President George Bush made an official visit to several East European countries, each in the midst of democratic demonstrations and public pressure on their Communist regimes. These visits provided President Bush an opportunity to lend support for the dramatic changes in Eastern Europe. In Hungary, for example, a question-and-answer session with local journalists provided….