This volume has been published to coincide with the anniversaries of two significant milestones in Czech and Slovak history – the establishment of communist rule in 1948 and the Prague Spring of 1968 – and in anticipation of the 20th anniversary of the 1989 ‘Velvet Revolution’. Given the ultimate failure of the communist system, these events and their legacy for Czech and Slovak society and politics merit continued study, particularly given the wealth of new data made available when state and Party archives were finally opened in the 1990s.
The essays in this volume, by witnesses, historians and social scientists from the Czech Republic and Slovakia, the USA, UK and Australia offer a reappraisal of those turbulent events. They present new and original research, based on information from archives which were not opened until after 1990 and which is not yet available to audiences who do not speak Czech or Slovak. This volume will, therefore, be of interest to both specialists and general readers who are curious to learn more about these events.
This book was published as a special issue of Europe-Asia Studies.
Table of Contents
1. Remembering 1948 and 1968: Reflections on Two Pivotal Years in Czech and Slovak History Laura Cashman 2. Dimensions of the Czechoslovak Crisis of 1967–1970 Vilem Precan 3. 1938 and 1968, 1939 and 1969, and the Philosophy of Czech History from Karel H. Macha to Jan Patocka Stefan Auer 4. New Research on February 1948 in Czechoslovakia Martin Myant 5. The Scheming Apparatchik of the Prague Spring Mary Heimann 6. French Responses to the Prague Spring: Connections, (Mis)perception and Appropriation Maud Bracke 7. The Prague Spring of Science: Czechoslovak Natural Scientists Reconsidering the Iron Curtain Riikka Nisonen-Trnka 8. The Limits of Thought?: The Regulatory Framework of Social Sciences and Humanities in Czechoslovakia (1968–1989) Libora Oates-Indruchova 9. Prelude to a Divorce? The Prague Spring as Dress Rehearsal for Czechoslovakia's 'Velvet Divorce' Scott Brown 10. The Normalisation Regime and its Impact on Slovak Domestic Policy after 1970 Juraj Marusiak 11. Criticism and Destiny: Kundera and Havel on the Legacy of 1968 Charles Sabatos
Laura Cashman is a Research Fellow in the Department of Central and East European Studies, University of Glasgow.