In May 2006, following a closely and bitterly fought referendum, Montenegro finally regained the status of an independent nation that it had lost in 1918 - the most recent chapter in a highly turbulent history. The tiny Balkan republic's declaration of independence from Serbia represented - barring the final resolution of Kosovo's status - the final stage in the disintegration of what was once Yugoslavia. But how did the Balkans forge this tiny republic? What sets it apart from the other dominant powers in the region? And what will be its future role on the world's stage?Montenegro's path towards regaining independent status was long and arduous. Recognised as an independent state by the Congress of Berlin in 1878, Montenegro lost its independence when it was unified with Serbia before joining the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes in 1918. But the manner of the unification of Serbia and Montenegro long remained contested, and the perceived illegitimacy of Montenegro's incorporation into Serbia was ever-present in the minds of many Montenegrins, especially during times of crisis. During the Second World War and again throughout the process of disintegration of the Yugoslav state in the early 1990s, the chaotic political context facilitated the re-opening of the Montenegrin question. Were the Montenegrins simply a part of the Serbian nation or a distinct national group? This ambiguity is at the heart of all the political struggles fought during Montenegro's modern history. 'Montenegro: A Modern History' charts the country's contemporary history in accessible and comprehensive form. Kenneth Morrison explores the forces that have shaped the republic of Montenegro and questions where this will lead in the future, examining the fundamental issues of Montenegrin identity and statehood in a wider European as well as a Balkan context. This full and authoritative modern history is essential reading for everyone interested in the political and social dynamics of one of Europe's youngest states.
A Modern History