This article analyzes the structuring of party systems of four East Central European countries. At the outset an assumption is proposed that the region is by no means homogeneous (as is often treated) but exhibits different levels of ideological articulation and party formation. First, we concentrate on the left-right ideological identities and its' attitudinal-issue correlates as well as the social roots of left-right ideological orientations. The main part deals with socio-political attitudes as predictors of ideological orientations, both on mass and elite level. The results indicate different levels of ideological structuration and political divisions of the party systems in Eastern Europe, which are explained not only by socio-economic factors, but mainly by varying experiences of pre-communist rule, communist governance and pathways to democracy.

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