Through her accounts as a first-hand observer in the Black Earth region, 1998 IDRF Fellow Allina-Pisano addresses some of the most fundamental assumptions underlining both theories and assessments of the political economy of post-communist transitions. As the Soviet Empire lay in ruins in the late 1990s, the Russian and Ukrainian governments undertook a project to dismantle the collective farm system that was created under Stalin. In the process, they intended to privatize an expanse of farmland larger than Australia. While ordinary people were supposed to benefit from the reform, local government leaders instead quietly rebelled against it. The end result was the dispossession of millions of rural people. In Potemkin Village, Allina-Pisano examines the role of informal practices in shaping the post-communist world. Buy from Amazon.