The homogeneity (mass-elite) paradigm exerts inordinate influence over social research on East and Central European socialism and its transition. I explore the epistemological and methodological underpinnings of this paradigm and argue that it has masked the importance of class relations for grasping the dynamics of these societies. I help retrieve class in general, and the working class in particular, from the analytic obscurity to which the homogeneity paradigm has relegated them by juxtaposing workers' and intellectuals' perceptions of economic inefficiency. Finally, I suggest ways that inattention to class under socialism has retarded understanding of the political struggles that have accompanied its demise.


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  • Article Type: Review Article
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