The first of the Yugoslav successor states to succeed in building a democratic system and to enter the European Union, Slovenia stands as a model for democratic transition. Here, Ramet and Fink-Hafner have assembled a team of outstanding specialists to analyze various aspects of the country's transformation from socialism to democracy.
The editors note that while a great deal has been written on political and economic questions, relatively little attention has been paid to the transformation and transmission of values and norms in Eastern Europe over the past fifteen years. Slovenia's experience demonstrates how a small country has created the preconditions necessary to the construction of a civic, democratic culture. Six values are emphasized as central to this project: tolerance, equality, church-state separation, respect for democratic procedure and the rule of law, human rights, and civic-mindedness. The volume editors join the other contributors in discussing the manner in which Slovenia has set out to build democracy, the ways in which values are transmitted, the role of the media in a free society, the structure of educational systems, and other questions that concern anyone who aspires to live in an open, democratic society.