Save

A Typology of Postcommunist Successor Parties in Central and Eastern Europe and an Explanatory Framework for Their (Non-)Success

In: East Central Europe
Authors:
Seongcheol KimInstitute of Intercultural and International Studies, University of Bremen, Germany, seongcheol.kim@uni-bremen.de

Search for other papers by Seongcheol Kim in
Current site
Google Scholar
PubMed
Close
and
Endre BorbáthDepartment of Political and Social Sciences, Freie Universität Berlin, Germany
Center for Civil Society Research, WZB Berlin Social Science Center, Berlin, Germany, endre.borbath@wzb.eu

Search for other papers by Endre Borbáth in
Current site
Google Scholar
PubMed
Close
Download Citation Get Permissions

Access options

Get access to the full article by using one of the access options below.

Institutional Login

Log in with Open Athens, Shibboleth, or your institutional credentials

Login via Institution

Purchase

Buy instant access (PDF download and unlimited online access):

$34.95

Abstract

This article revisits the phenomenon of postcommunist successor parties – defined as the formal successor organizations of state-socialist ruling parties – in Central and Eastern Europe three decades after the transformative events of 1989–91 and two decades after the most recent period of sustained academic interest in the topic. The article begins with a critical reexamination of the late 1990s and early 2000s comparative politics literature on postcommunist successor parties, noting in particular its reliance on path dependency as well as subsequent empirical developments that cannot be explained by established approaches. From here, this article argues that major changes in the electoral fortunes of numerous successor parties since the mid-2000s require instead a relational perspective on party competition and interactions with competitor parties in the respective party systems, allowing for the identification of realigning elections in which successor parties are programmatically outflanked or crowded out on one or more issue dimensions by competitors or vice versa. The article applies this perspective to reexamine successor parties in six countries that exhibit a pronounced explanatory deficit vis-à-vis the previous literature: Czech Republic, (the former East) Germany, Hungary, Poland, Romania, and Slovakia. In doing so, it draws on expert survey (ches) data and postelection studies on voter flows in addition to qualitative case analyses in order to demonstrate these interactions at work in critical phases of successor-party decline or growth.

Content Metrics

All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 277 277 163
Full Text Views 23 23 8
PDF Views & Downloads 43 43 13