2012 National Book Award Finalist,

Anne Applebaum

Iron Curtain: The Crushing of Eastern Europe, 1945-1956


Anne Applebaum


Anne Applebaum’s Iron Curtain is a brilliant account of how Stalin and his agents choked the life out of Eastern Europe after World War II. Applebaum exposes the mechanisms of tyranny—the secret police, gulags, and apparatchiks who crushed independent thought and society. As long as Stalin’s legacy lingers in Eastern Europe, as well as in North Korea, Russia, and other places, Iron Curtain will be a necessary work of history as well as an important one.

About the Book

Anne Applebaum is a columnist for The Washington Post and Slate, covering U.S. and international politics, as well as a historian with a special focus on the history of communism. Her book Gulag: A History won the 2004 Pulitzer Prize for nonfiction. Gulag has appeared in more than two dozen translations, including all major East and West European languages. Her previous books include Between East and West, a travelogue about Eastern Europe in the early 1990s, and Gulag Voices, an anthology of camp memoirs. She has previously worked as foreign and deputy editor of The Spectator, as the Warsaw correspondent for The Economist, and as a columnist for The Daily Telegraph and The Sunday Telegraph. Between 2001 and 2006, she was a member of the editorial board of The Washington Post. She reviews regularly for The New York Review of Books, The New Republic, and the Spectator, and has lectured at Yale, Columbia, the University of Zurich and the Humboldt University in Berlin among many others. In 2012-2013, she holds the Phillipe Roman chair in History and International Affairs at the London School of Economics. Her husband, Radek Sikorski, is Foreign Minister of Poland, and she lives in both London and Warsaw.

About the Author

Anne Applebaum is a columnist for The Washington Post and Slate, as well as the Director of Political Studies at the Legatum Institute in London. Formerly a member of the Washington Post editorial board, she has also worked as the Foreign and Deputy Editor of The Spectator in London, as the Political Editor of the Evening Standard, and as a columnist at several British newspapers, including the Daily and Sunday Telegraphs. From 1988 to 1991 she covered the collapse of communism as the Warsaw correspondent of The Economist. She is the author of five books, including Between East and West: Across the Borderlands of Europe and Gulag: A History, which won the Pulitzer Prize for nonfiction in 2004.


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