Romania Since The Second World War

Romania Since The Second World War: A Political, Social and Economic History

by Florin Abraham

Florin Abraham is Senior Researcher at the National Institute for the Study of Totalitarianism at The Romanian Academy and Lecturer at The National University of Political Studies and Public Administration, Romania. Author affiliation details are correct at time of print publication.

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Bloomsbury Academic, 2017
  • DOI:
  • ISBN:
    978-1-4742-1947-1 (online)

    978-1-4725-3218-3 (hardback)

    978-1-4725-3418-7 (paperback)

    978-1-4725-2992-3 (epdf)

    978-1-4725-2629-8 (epub)
  • Edition:
    First published
  • Place of Publication:
  • Published Online:
Romania Since The Second World War
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Romania since the Second World War is the first book about Romania designed to chart the progress of the nation under the communist regime as well as the transition period that followed, providing detailed analysis of the aspects of continuity and change that can be identified over the period as a whole.

The book begins with Romania’s involvement in the Second World War, looking at the communist regime in depth. It examines how communism took hold and the elimination of traditional elites took place, before discussing the impact of Gheorghiu-Dej and Nicolae Caeusescu, the two most important leaders of the communist era. The following chapters cover the main social and economic changes during the communist regime. The second part of the book explores the transition period following the end of communism in 1989, with special attention given to international relations and Romania’s drive for inclusion in NATO and the EU. Romania since the Second World War assesses socio-demographic trends across the postwar period before concluding with some thoughts on the nation’s development during this time.

The book includes a useful appendix covering the key figures in Romania’s recent history and a helpful bibliography, making this a key text for anyone interested in the modern history of Eastern Europe.

Florin Abraham analyzes Romania’s history from the Second World War to the present day, focusing around three issues: main events of the political life, socio-cultural dynamic and economic phenomena. In order to facilitate understanding of post-war history, the author begins his analysis with the Hitler-Stalin Pact, followed by a succinct evaluation of Romania’s involved in the Second World War. Abraham uses the chronological and thematic criterion for presenting Romania’s history. The first part of the book refers to the 1945-89 interval and the second evaluates the post-communist period. The third part contains a synthesis of the main changes in the structure of Romania’s population.

Within each period, the political regime and the main events at national level are analyzed, with a special emphasis on the activity of political parties. Abraham offers a synthesis on Romania’s foreign policy during the Cold War and an extended analysis over the post-communist period.

The author proposes a synthesis on the repression against society exercised by the Securitate, Miliţia and the propaganda apparatus, as well as on the anticommunist protest actions. The book offers a detailed analysis on the destruction of civil society by the dictatorial regime and on the efforts to create and consolidate rule of law after 1989.

Culture, arts and sports are analyzed both for the communist period and for the transition period. The situation of religious cults and ethno-confessional minorities is researched in relation with the political regime.

Economic history includes synthetic information concerning GDP evolution, situation of agriculture, industry, services or the banking sector.

Abraham identifies as the main constant of Romania’s modern history the feeling of insecurity determined by the country’s positioning in an unstable and geopolitically fragile area.