Cafe Europa Slavenka Drakulic

Dear friend, This semester I am taking a history class called History of East Europe. Even though, as you know, I am from Greece, and I have lived there most of my life, I see that I know very little about my neighbor countries and their recent history. It is interesting and at the same time sad to learn that so many people are fighting with each other for a piece of land and independence, while the real purpose is just politicians attempting to gain more political power. Croats fighting with the Serbs, efforts to split Bosnia Herzegovina in parts and all this for what? Only so that some politicians gain power, there is no economic gains and nothing related to the improvement of the peoples lifes within those countries. Communism has made them vulnerable and unable to react, because they are not used to democracy they dont know their rights. I have been reading a book, Caf Europa, which illustrates how people today live in East Europe and particularly in Croatia where Slavenka is from. It is really amazing how people in countries so close to us have such different ways of living and thinking. Slavenka Drakulic is a reporter. Her husband is from Sweden. In her book and the collection of essays she stresses the post-communist era in East Europe and how people are reacting to it, what has changed after the fall of communism and why people are still living with the old lifestyle even though they have the ability to change. One of the issues she is addressing is the egalitarian principle. She talks about this on her essay titled To have or to have not. Slavenka is a talented reporter and is therefore in a good economic standing. She is traveling frequently to West-Europe and she always brings presents back for her friends and neighbors in Croatia. She does this because she feels obligated (actually these presents are most of the times essentials like nappies). People in her home countr…

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