The Lost Decade – 1990s Week on Engelsberg Ideas

Stranded between the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 and 9/11 in 2001, the nineties tend to be misunderstood and even overlooked. But it was a pivotal decade, featuring rapid economic, technological and cultural change that reshaped the world. This week our writers explore what really went on in the 1990s.

Champagne supernova

Audacious dynamism and uninhibited creativity defined the music scene in the party-hard 90s – the last decade when outsiders could become bona fide rock n’ roll stars.

Worldview – China in the 90s: why did it rise?

Niall Ferguson, Helen Thompson and Rana Mitter join Iain Martin to explore what happened to China in the nineties, and what created the conditions for China’s spectacular rise in the new millennium.

Russia and the West – the path not taken

The collapse of the Soviet Union drew back the Iron Curtain, integrating Eastern Europe in the Western order. Although Russia remained out in the cold, this was not inevitable. For a brief moment in the nineties, a very different Europe was imagined.

We were on a break

It was the decade of Friends, Bill Clinton and a fresh new pan-European passport. Underneath the teen-pop smile of the nineties there were blemishes.

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