Like many other modern states, both the Soviet Union, with its authoritian socialism, and Sweden, with its social democracy, strived to shape their citizens' lives for the better. Both states considered it their duty actively to plan, organize and control housing.
A number of representatives of the opposition in Belarus participated in a seminar “The Way Forward for Belarus”. The seminar addressed such issues as the difficulties experienced by the opposition in working for democracy and human rights in Belarus and what the outside world can do to support their work.
Conor O'Dwyer, professor of political science, talks about a backlash at the political level also. Sexual minorities in Poland and Latvia have had their rights restricted following EU accession.
The passing of a homophobic law 2009 threw the spotlight on the difficult situation faced by the homosexual community in Lithuania.
Latvia’s deep economic down-turn has brought about a historical political change. A left-wing party has won an election and come to power in Riga. The local party is dominated by ethnic Russian politicians.
Narva is the EU’s port to Russia. Here, Swedes, Germans, Russians, and Estonians have had their interests. Today, the official language is Estonian and it is difficult for the Russian minority to obtain citizenship.
+ Piotr Wawrzeniuk (ed.) Societal Change and Ideological Formation among the Rural Population of the Baltic Area 1880—1939 Studia Baltica II:2, Södertörn University, Stockholm 2008, 206 pages.