Ex-nomenklatura and Ex-dissidents in the Post-communist Parliaments of Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, and Poland
Keywords:post-communism, parliamentary elites, ex-communists, ex-dissidents, party affiliation.
The article examines the post-communist Estonian, Latvian, Lithuanian, and Polish parliamentary elites
and their relations with the Soviet regime. Two dimensions of these relations are highlighted: retrospectively,
negative political experience in the former political regime (membership in the Communist
Party and the nomenklatura) and positive credentials of being involved in the dissident movement. The
study is guided by hypotheses underlying revolutionary nature of post-communist transition and stressing
achievements of the electoral politics, market reforms and liberal mass media. Research shows different
shares of ex-communist activists and ex-dissidents, as well as their asynchronous changes in the postcommunist
parliamentary elites. Variations are related to different meta-histories of the nomenklaturas, the
communist parties and dissident movement in the country cases and recent experiences of democratization.