The scope and importance of Estonian literature has steadily increased since the period of national awakening in the 19th century. Open to cultural and literary influences of western Europe, Estonian literature developed a diversity of styles, ranging from Neoclassicism to bold experimentation. After World War II, Socialist Realism dominated literary expression. Both Estonian classics and the works of contemporary authors have been translated into many languages.
The beginning of professional theatrical art in Estonia is closely connected with the creation of the Vanemuine Theatre in Tartu in 1870. Tallinn has several theatres, including an opera and ballet theatre, a drama theatre, a youth theatre, and a puppet theatre.
While more than 100 newspapers were published in Estonia during the Soviet era, some with circulations in excess of 100,000, acute shortages of newsprint after independence restricted output. In addition, market economics resulted in substantial increases in publishing costs and therefore in drastic price increases.
Administration and social conditions