From the hardening grip of Soviet domination under Brezhnev to the collapse of communism and its aftermath, Bulent Gokay provides the essential introduction to Eastern Europe in the last quarter of the twentieth century. The Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia in 1968 spelt the end of reformist communism and the tightening of Soviet control throughout Eastern Europe. In spite of this, several countries within the Soviet Bloc managed to retain varying degrees of independence over the next two decades. Focusing on the struggle towards economic and social modernisation in the region and the competing influences of East and West in a dangerous Cold War. Bulent Gokay shows how individual circumstances and diverse national characteristics made a uniform application of the Soviet model impossible, and charts the growing resistance to domination and the momentous events which finally toppled Soviet power in the region.