This work analyzes the events leading to the overthrow of the one-party state in Albania, the end of communism and the transistion to democracy. It is divided into historical sections which trace the disintegration of the communist system, culminating in the "Winter of Anarchy" of 1990-91 and the fortunes of the National Unity and Democratic Party governments after 1991. It also analyzes the cultural and social impact of these changes and explores the emerging crises facing the Albanian peoples in neighbouring Kosova and Macedonia. Special attention is paid to the problems of the significant Greek minority, the crucial question of religion, the military and national security and Albania's foreign relations. The book is based on interviews, research in Albania's newly opened archives and the author's personal participation in the events they describe.
The crisis of the one-party state after Enver Hoxha's death, 1985-89; the emergence of pluralism, November 1990 - March 1991; popular forces and the end of communism; a democratic victory; religion; social and cultural change; Kosova and the question of national unification; the other national question - Macedonia and Montenegro; minorities; international relations and defence; the end of party politics - democracy under threat; renewed political tensions and the constitutional crisis.