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Eastern Europe

Subregion of the European continent / From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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Eastern Europe is a subregion of the European continent. As a largely ambiguous term, it has a wide range of geopolitical, geographical, ethnic, cultural, and socio-economic connotations. Its eastern boundary is marked by the Ural Mountains, whilst its western boundary is defined in various ways.[1] Most definitions include the countries of Belarus, Russia, Ukraine and Moldova, while less restrictive definitions also include some or all of the Balkans, the Baltic states, the Czech Republic, Poland, Slovakia, Hungary, Romania, Georgia, Armenia, Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan.[2][3][4]

Digital rendering of Europe, focused over the continent's eastern portion

It represents a significant part of European culture; the main socio-cultural characteristics of Eastern Europe have historically been defined by the traditions of the Slavs and Greeks, as well as by the influence of Eastern Christianity as it developed through the Eastern Roman Empire and the Ottoman Empire.[5][6] Another definition was created by the Cold War, as Europe was ideologically divided by the Iron Curtain, with "Eastern Europe" being synonymous with communist states constituting the Eastern Bloc under the influence of the Soviet Union.[6][7][8][9][10][5][11][12]

The term is sometimes considered to be pejorative, through stereotypes about Eastern Europe being inferior (poorer, less developed) to Western Europe; the term Central and Eastern Europe is sometimes used instead for a more neutral grouping.[13][14][15][16][17]

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