New upcoming book – Eastern Christianity and Politics in the Twenty-First Century Sunday, Dec 22 2013 

Eastern Christianity and Politics in the Twenty-First Century, a new volume edited by Lucian Leustean, is now officially in production. It will be published in Spring 2014 with Routledge. Lucian Turcescu and I sign the chapter on the Romanian Orthodox Church. The book is advertised on the Routledge website.

Its description reads: “This book provides an up-to-date, comprehensive overview of Eastern Christian churches in Europe, the Middle East, America, Africa, Asia and Australia. Written by leading international scholars in the field, it examines both Orthodox and Oriental churches from the end of the Cold War up to the present day. The book offers a unique insight into the myriad of church-state relations in Eastern Christianity and tackles contemporary concerns, opportunities and challenges, such as religious revival after the fall of communism; churches and democracy; relations between Orthodox, Catholic and Greek Catholic churches; religious education and monastic life; the size and structure of congregations; and the impact of migration, secularisation and globalisation on Eastern Christianity in the twenty-first century.”

Citation in Ratio Juris posting Wednesday, Sep 18 2013 

The Ratio Juris blog mentions the Encyclopedia of Transitional Justice and my book on Transitional Justice in Post-Communist Romania (both published with Cambridge University Press earlier this year) in their Restorative and Redistributive Justice during Periods of Transitional Justice: A Selected Bibliography. The bibliography is available here.

New Book: After Oppression. Transitional Justice in Latin America and Eastern Europe Monday, Nov 26 2012 

With a bit of delay, the United Nations University Press has published a new volume edited by Vesselin Popovski and Monica Serrano. Based on a research grant and a conference held at Oxford University in 2009, the volume examines transitional justice comparatively in Latin America and Eastern Europe and focuses on evaluating the effectiveness of accountability mechanisms. I authored the chapter on Romania, which looked at court trials, the Tismaneanu history commission, lustration, and access to secret files.

The volume is presented this way on the UNU Press website: “The decline of authoritarianism in Latin America and Eastern Europe marked the end of a dark chapter in the history of these societies. In both regions, transition to democracy was accompanied by distinct efforts to come to terms with the traumatic experiences of the past and to demand accountability from the oppressors. The impact of these efforts rippled far beyond national boundaries, expanding the frontiers of international justice, and yielding indelible lessons and inspiration.

As these societies crossed the uncharted waters of transition and liberalization, one difficult question remained: How to reconcile the need for democratic stability in the present and future with the imperative of truth and justice for the past? This was an unprecedented test: societies made their way forward often through trial and error; steps ahead were followed by steps back.

After Oppression aims to enquire into the effectiveness of various accountability mechanisms. Drawing comparisons from cases studies in Latin America and Eastern Europe, the book demonstrates that while there are many different paths to truth and justice, all depend on continued efforts in order to reach them. In many cases these efforts also create favourable conditions for the development of a resilient human rights culture. The experiences across regions show that democratic consolidation and accountability for past human rights violations are closely related, if independent, processes. This accessible book makes an important contribution towards better understanding those processes and the relationship between them.”

Making Sense of the Secular – Critical Perspectives from Europe to Asia Monday, Oct 1 2012 

Prof. Ranjan Ghosh edited a volume on secularism in Europe and Asia, which was published with Routledge in October 2012 as part of the Routledge Studies in Religion. Together with D. Vancea (Ovidius University, Constanta), I contributed a chapter on Eastern Europe. The book is available on the Routledge site (

“This book offers a wide range of critical perspectives on how secularism unfolds and has been made sense of across Europe and Asia. The book evaluates secularism as it exists today – its formations and discontents within contemporary discourses of power, terror, religion and cosmopolitanism – and the focus on these two continents gives critical attention to recent political and cultural developments where secularism and multiculturalism have impinged in deeply problematical ways, raising bristling ideological debates within the functioning of modern state bureaucracies.

Examining issues as controversial as the state of Islam in Europe and China’s encounters with religion, secularism, and modernization provides incisive and broader perspectives on how we negotiate secularism within the contemporary threats of terrorism and other forms of fundamentalism and state-politics. However, amidst the discussions of various versions of secularism in different countries and cultural contexts, this book also raises several other issues relevant to the antitheocratic and theocratic alike, such as: Is secularism is merely a nonreligious establishment? Is secularism a kind of cultural war? How is it related to “terror”? The book at once makes sense of secularism across cultural, religious, and national borders and puts several relevant issues on the anvil for further investigations and understanding.”

Les doctrines internationalistes durant les années du communisme réel en Europe – New Book Saturday, Jul 28 2012 

A new book, titled Les doctrines internationalistes durant les années du communisme réel en Europe was published recently by the Société de législation comparée. Edited by Emmanuelle Jouannet and Iulia Motoc, the book includes a chapter on “Church and State under Real Socialism,” which I wrote with my husband, Lucian Turcescu. This site includes more information on the volume. The book is also available on Amazon.

Book reviews in European Legacy Tuesday, Jun 26 2012 

Three reviews of three books I enjoyed reading were published in European Legacy, the journal of the International Society for the Study of European Ideas. They are signaled here, too: They are: Gabriel Garcia Marquez: The Early Years by Ilan Stavans, Principles of Government and Politics in the Middle Ages by Walter Ullmann, and Stalin’s Genocides by Norman M. Naimark.

After Oppression: Transitional Justice in Latin America and Eastern Europe (UNU Press) Sunday, May 13 2012 

Prof. Vesselin Popovski at the United Nations University in Tokyo, Japan, the academic arm of the United Nations, has initiated and brought to completion a large project comparing transitional justice experiences in Eastern Europe and Latin America. This project, conducted with the assistance of the United Nations University, Oxford University, and El Colegio Mexico, has resulted in a conference organized at Oxford University and a volume that will be published with UNU Press. A description of the project, which included a contribution on Romania that I signed, is available here.

“The gross violations of human rights in Latin America and Eastern Europe under authoritarian regimes created growing popular anger that finally exploded in mass revolts and demands for change, bringing the regimes to an end. It was a bottom-up process: a gradually rising discontent of ordinary people, who in the aftermath of the changes, made continuous calls for justice and accountability for the perpetrators of human rights violations, and simultaneous calls for compensation for the victims of these violations. The demands for justice and compensation faced initial reluctance, partly because political forces connected to previous regimes remained powerful and influential.

The processes of transitional justice have been controversial and complex, zigzagging from extreme demands for severe punishment to similarly unacceptable calls for blanket unqualified forgiveness. Transitional justice has had to perform a balancing act: paying full respect to grievances — traumatic, deeply emotional and divisive — while also taking into consideration strategies for societal reconciliation and future stability.”

Life in Post-Communist Eastern Europe after EU Membership, a new book at Routledge Tuesday, May 1 2012 

Sabina Stan, Vera Sheridan and Donnacha O Beachain have edited a fine volume on the effects of EU membership in the new post-communist member states. The book will be published this month with Routledge, and the cover was already designed. For this volume, I have co-authored the chapter on Romania together with Dr. Rodica Zaharia from the Academy of Economic Studies in Bucharest.