What explains how citizens living in young democracies feel about their authoritarian past? While the impact of autocratic legacies on support for democracy and left–right placement has been thoroughly studied, we know less about the determinants of attitudes toward the past in post-authoritarian democracies. This study relies on survey data collected in Southern and Central European countries ten years after their transitions to democracy in order to test context-dependent variance in the relevance of ideology and party identification on citizen attitudes toward the past. The results show that classical factors such as regime type and mode of transition are not the main determinants of the politicization of attitudes toward the past and that the existence of a strong authoritarian successor party is associated with stronger politicization of the past.

You do not currently have access to this content.