Journal of Continuity and Change

"An extremely valuable piece, which should be read by scholars and students working on the global history of demographic thinking and/or on East European history. It is a proper, well-researched historical analysis of several important legislative acts and their political and discursive contexts in Bulgaria, including the 1923 Bill for Public Health, the 1934 Decree-Law for Public Assistance, the gradual development of family allowance, legislation on children born outside marriage and, very importantly, the history of the 1943 law on child-rich families. This nuanced local analysis, with excellent notes on comparative issues, sheds light on many aspects of East European management of population development. If carefully read, the work of Baloutzova, together with the current works of Marius Turda on the interrelationship between nation and eugenics or some of the new pieces on Romania, Hungary and the Balkans, can be excellent starting points in understanding the early twentieth-century East European story of demographic thinking as related to the much-researched Italian, German, French or even North American developments in the first half of the twentieth century. The crucial contribution of Baloutzova's work is: first, that she is aware of the global positioning game; second, she dares to show the Janus face of East European demographic nationalisms; and, third, she shows some of the key elements in this complexity."
Reviewed book: 
Svetla Baloutzova
$75.00 / €65.00 / £60.00