slav90 10:21 notes - Traditional Stalinist planned communities common in communist countries post-WWII SOCIAL DRAMA CONT THE VELVET REVOLUTION Prague

slav90 10:21 notes - Traditional Stalinist planned...

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Traditional Stalinist planned communities common in communist countries post-WWII. SOCIAL DRAMA CON’T: THE VELVET REVOLUTION Prague spring, self-immolation, Czech hockey team beats Soviet team. Investigate and punish people who incite/instigated the police riot, free polit prisoners, justice. List of demands grows, very typical expressions/articulations of Czech thought. Have roots in a vry long history in which this type of thinking is involved. 1. Call for genuine democracy informed by ethical pluralism. Central myth—we as Czechs have been a genuinely democratic people way back before anyone even knew ideas of democracy, in 14 th and 15 th centuries. Important aspect—not limited to the Gentry like the Poles. Much broader notion for the Czechs. Build their national consciousness from the bottom, on a plebian base. Ethical pluralism: many theories abt what is right and what is wrong. Theories abt moral norms. May be incompatible w/ your own ideas of what is right or wrong. Tolerance—other peoples’ views of right and wrong are acceptable. 2. Want to be part of central Europe . Soviet bloc was horrible mistake/deviation from trajectory of Czech history as it had been for hundreds of years before. Did not feel that Russian hegemonic culture was in any way part of their culture. Was part of austro- hungarian empire before WWI. Completely foreign—E Europe is not where they belong. Czechs develop the idea of Pan-Slavism as a reaction to the perceived germanification of Slavic lands. As Pan-Slavs, they look towards the Russians as a possible bulwark—bigger, only Slavs with own state. For Czech Pan-Slavists in 19 th century , went hand in hand for some of them w/ Russophilism (love of Russia). On balcony: Václav Havel and Alexander Dubček. “Socialism with a human face,” reform socialism from the inside. Old figure of resistance and the new. Dec 10 —communist govt realizes that everywhere else in E Europe, communism had collapsed. Also realize that they can’t deal with the protests. Govt attempts to come to terms with its own inevitable demise. All attempts to appease demonstrators fail. Govt resigns and installs a new coalition government dominated by non-communist. At this point the first demand of the Velvet Revolution was met. That new gov’t elected Dubček as leader of the senate. Reintegration— 29 th December elected a person to the presidency who had been hounded for over a decade, imprisoned, forced out of his reg job and into a brewery. The face of Czech resistance and dissidence. This is Václav Havel. The people who were down and out are now on top. Change, but also has continuity.

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