The Roma Cafe
Details of Pogany, The Roma Cafe and the Plight of the Romani People (Pluto, 2004):
Written in a lively and accessible style, and illustrated throughout with photographs, The Roma Cafe is a poignant and intriguing analysis of the problems facing Central and Eastern Europe’s gypsy populations, including the largely unacknowledged legacy of the Roma Holocaust. Engaging with a broad range of issues including racism, stereotyping, and political and economic transition in the ex-Communist states, Professor Istvan Pogany challenges the most common preconceptions about the Roma. He also looks at the specifics of individual Romani lives, particularly in Hungary and Romania. Highlighting the difficulties that all marginal peoples face, Pogany explains how the Roma have been devastated by the economic transition from Communism to open markets in Central and Eastern Europe since 1989. Mass unemployment, poverty, lack of education, as well as widespread anti-Roma discrimination and inadequate legal protection, have left the Roma facing intense hardship and marginalisation since the collapse of state socialism. However, this book is not just a catalogue of the challenges that the Roma face — it is also a celebration of Roma cultures and of the acceptance of difference — something that is more important than ever in our cosmopolitan societies.
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