Prior to the fall of the Soviet Union and the socialist regimes of Eastern Europe, sociologists and political scientists were divided about the possibilities of significant systemic reform. On the one side, were those who focused on the socio-economic preconditions of democracy in the explanation of the evolution of parliamentary democracies. 1 As we have noted in Chapter 2, it was confidently predicted that state socialist societies would inevitably follow democratic and pluralist ones with a convergence to the political and economic system of the West. These studies rightly drew attention to some of the underlying causes of political value change, particularly the consequences of the rise of new social strata (such as intellectuals) and classes (the bourgeoisie and proletariat). Notably, Frank Parkin, following Lipset’s social mobilization theory, argued that the maturation of such societies would lead to the ripening of an “ascendant class” formed from the “scientific, economic and creative forces [which was] indispensable to the quest for modernity and social progress.” 2 Such developments would lead to social transformation and to democracy.