A historical survey of Central Europe, a region that encompasses contemporary Germany, Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Austria, Hungary, Slovenia, and Croatia. Unlike almost all previous histories of this region, Lonnie Johnson doesn't divide the area into 'west' and 'east', or view it simply as the battlefield of the Cold War. Acknowledging the recent reunification of Germany, the demise of the Soviet Union and the re-asserting of Central Europe as an autonomous region, Johnson instead tells the unique history of the area, from the fall of the Roman Empire in the 5th century to the 21st century.;Each chapter is thematically organized around a few key issues or events that are particularly important for developing an understanding of the period addressed. The complexity of Central Europe that stems from its astonishing and sometimes perplexing diversity is something all those interested in the area confront. Johnson aims to make clear the competing ideological, national, religious and economic interests that have driven the history of the region.