Poland, which has one of the strongest economies in the European Union, has faced significant turmoil throughout the years. Encapsulating centuries of development, this book distills Poland's historical evolution into patterns, including those that have developed since the first edition was published nearly 20 years ago. The book begins with an overview of contemporary Poland, providing both basic information about the geography, culture, and current political climate of the country while tying these to major contemporary issues. This introduction is followed by chapters discussing Poland's long history, starting with the 10th century. The second half of the book presents a history of Poland in the 20th and 21st centuries, covering the major issues affecting the country and offering possible interpretations of them. This updated and revised edition accounts for recent events in Poland and examines the effects of the Polish diaspora globally.