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Rise and Fall of Moravian Regionalist Parties

Maxmilián Strmiska



The Moravist parties are an interesting subject of study for two principal aspects: that of an experiment involving different party and political identities and forms of organisation in the period of transition to pluralist democracy in a post-communist environment, and that of a link between ethno-regional political actors and identitary mobilisation, or a stimulator of a potential nation-building process. Unfortunately, this topic has not yet been given much attention (cf. Musil, Rabušic, Mareš 1991; Daněk 1993; Pernes 1996; Dallago 1999). The purpose of this article is to at least partially fill the gap. Brief as it is, the article cannot cover the problem in its complexity, but to give an overview of the evolution of Moravist parties between 1990 and 1999/2000, to elaborate on some hypotheses explaining the reasons of the spectacular electoral success of the Moravist movement at the beginning, and the fall of its electoral and political potential today. I have based my approach to the above phenomena on the following premises:
1. The Moravist movement has been a legitimate actor on the Czechoslovak and, eventually, Czech political scene, drawing upon sources of political legitimacy which were not better or worse than the sources used by other actors. A different issue is, however, the successful effort of other competitors to delegitimatise the movement.
2. The initial success of the Moravist movement was a product of an extraordinary and unrepeatable combination of heterogeneous factors and issues, with a prevailing role of conjunctural factors. That is the reason why the chance for the Moravist movement to remain a genuine major political actor in the medium and long term was quite minimal, irrespective of the strategy invented and pursued by its leaders.
3. The chance of the Moravist movement to remain a minor, but relevant regional actor in Czech party politics was quite bigger, though.[1] In this respect, the fall of Moravist parties should be explained as a result – even though not exclusively – of internal decomposition of the movement and choice of inadequate and ineffective strategies in the given context.

Genesis of Moravist parties (1990 – 1999)

As soon as in the initial phase of re-democratisation of Czechoslovakia and renewal of political pluralism there were several Moravist formations active in the post-totalitarian environment of Moravia. In a broader sense, they were pro-Moravian oriented formations trying to achieve political recognition, i.e. to politicise the ”Moravian issue” through their demand for the territorial and administrative division of the state to be revised. However, only some of these formations showed signs of transformation into genuine political parties or political movements and of integration in electoral competition, which primarily applied to the Moravian Civic Movement (MOH) and the Movement for Self-Governing Democracy - Association for Moravia and Silesia (HSD-SMS).

The Moravian Civic Movement (MOH) was a traditionalist, anti-communist and Christian oriented movement with a background in Moravian cultural associations whose original ambition had been to form an influential pro-Moravian pressure group within a relevant party or a political movement. After the failure of negotiations with the Civic Forum (OF), MOH made up a pre-electoral coalition with the Christian Democratic Union (KDU), in the position of a junior partner. However, the result was far from satisfactory: the Moravian Civic Movement only gained one mandate in the Czech National Council. A split followed (with part of the members leaving for the Moravian National Party), as well as the loss of any political potential (cf. Pernes 1996: 243-245). [2]

In January 1999, the Society for Moravia and Silesia (drawing upon the ”tripartite” line of the Moravist Movement between 1968 and 1969) [3] established contacts with a broad circle of different pro-Moravian associations and civic initiatives. [4] On the 4th April of 1990, the Movement for Self-Governing Democracy - Association for Moravia and Silesia (HSD-SMS) was founded and defined by its leader Bárta as a supra-party political movement of all democratic Moravians and Silesians irrespective of their political and religious conviction. [5] Unlike the Moravian Civic Movement, the Movement for Self-Governing Democracy - Association for Moravia and Silesia was not exclusively anti-communist but rather aspired to become a catch-all Moravist movement. The HSD-SMS platform was outlined in the Moravian-Silesian declaration calling for the establishment of a self-government form of the Czechoslovak state based on ”self-financing and natural geomorphologic units”, i.e. the Czech, Moravian and Silesian lands (with their national) or ethnic communities on the one hand and Slovakia on the other, unified in a federal republic of three countries. [6] The association of the ”rehabilitation of Moravia” with separatism or nationalism in this context was a priori rejected (which was even easier because the concept of Moravians and Silesians was rather vague and did not explicitly mean nations). The main issue for HSD-SMS was fiscal federalism and the central entity was Czechoslovakia. In case of disagreement of the Slovak establishment to change the binary federation into a federate state of three entities, the Movement for Self-Governing Democracy - Association for Moravia and Silesia would have been ready to solve the ”Moravian issue” within the Czech Republic provided the status of the lands – the constitutive units of the state – were conferred to Bohemia, Moravia, but also to Prague and Silesia. Regardless of a somehow chaotic course of events, the weakness of the organisational structure and some drawbacks of the electoral campaign, the Movement for Self-Governing Democracy - Association for Moravia and Silesia recorded a surprising success in the parliamentary elections for the Czech National Council (22 mandates and 10% of votes) and the National Assembly (7 mandates and 9.1% of votes), coming in fourth in the elections for the People’s Assembly (with 9 mandates and 7.89% of votes) (cf. Krejčí 1994: 253-255). This was clearly due to the fact that the Movement for Self-Governing Democracy - Association for Moravia and Silesia offered a broad circle of Moravian voters an acceptable electoral and political option independent from the ”regime divide” ideological bias, making good use of the strategy of ”split voting” on the federal and sub-federal level in line with the slogan ”At Least One Vote for Moravia” (cf. Fiala, Mareš 1997a: 110, 112-113). [7]

However, the subsequent events unveiled the weak points of the Movement for Self-Governing Democracy - Association for Moravia and Silesia which was incapable of consolidating and making use of the political potential gained thanks to the unexpected success in the parliamentary elections. [8] The ambivalent pact with OF on democratisation support involving a vague promise to renew the land system or, at least, to run a referendum on this issue, proved to be a wrong policy. The management of HSD-SMS and its leader Bárta attempted at a limited co-operation with governmental forces as a sort of ”semi-coalition combined with semi-opposition,” behaving, at the same time, quite pragmatically on the sub-federal Czech scene, which brought it one ministerial chair in the Czech government. The movement began to suffer from disputes regarding the way to share the governmental power, together with organisational problems and personal animosity. The coherence of the movement could be safeguarded only by a visible success in talks on the territorial and administrative reorganisation of the state. The management of the Movement for Self-Governing Democracy - Association for Moravia and Silesia, however, made a serious mistake in giving priority to the tripartite division of Czechoslovakia when the renewal of the land system in the Czech Republic was a much more realistic option. Not only was the management of HSD-SMS unable to formulate and implement a sophisticated and effective strategy in federal policy, but also to prevent the split in the movement. The conflict between different strategic conceptions changed into a conflict between the deputy clubs and within the clubs of the movement, so that a victory of the radical ”tripartite” wing headed by Bárta proved but illusory (cf. Fiala, Mareš 1997a: 117; Dallago 1999; Pernes 1996: 248). The split within deputy clubs had a negative impact on the prestige, as well as the position of the Movement for Self-Governing Democracy - Association for Moravia and Silesia in negotiations, which resulted in the rejection of the draft law on land system. After that, also the Moravian pragmatics were pushed to opposition. The sudden death of the HSD-SMS leader Boleslav Bárta had a catalyst effect on the subsequent torrential events and experimenting with the identity and strategy of the movement. This reflected on the Movement for Self-Governing Democracy - Association for Moravia and Silesia congress which followed and which brought to presidency Jan Kryčer whose intention was to transform the movement into a centrist party with a social liberal program with a broader radius than just that covering the claims for introducing a self-government for historical lands of Moravia and Silesia (cf. Fiala, Mareš 1997a: 117; Fiala, Mareš 1997b: 310; Dallago 1999: 23-24; Pernes 1996: 249).

The Movement for Self-Governing Democracy - Association for Moravia and Silesia tried to compensate the evident erosion of the electoral potential by finding suitable partners for the pre-electoral alliance, without major success, though (cf. Dallago 1999: 31-32). HSD-SMS ran for the 1992 parliamentary elections as federal party, active in all regions and co-operating with the Democratic Labour Party (DSP) and the Women’s Movement in the Czech lands, and with the Party of Independent Democrats in Slovakia. The platform of the movement then involved a wider circle of social and economic issues, but of major importance was the fact that the concept of the Moravian nation and of the state administration system was as ambivalent as in the case of the previous platform. HSD–SMS only got beyond the 5 % line in the elections for the Czech National Council (5.87% votes brought 14 mandates of which one for DSP and 2 for MNS) (cf. Fiala, Mareš 1997b: 306; Dallago 1999: 32). The party failed to gain ground in both Bohemia and Slovakia and the project of a federal party collapsed. At that moment, it was quite irrelevant, however, due to the collapse of the federal state, which soon followed. Nevertheless, Kryčer’s wing insisted on the project of a centrist non-regional party, which was in contradiction with the other pro-Moravian group’s objectives. The split of Czechoslovakia disqualified any attempts at creating a federal or quasi-federal trilateral system. In addition, a radical federalist course within the Czech Republic appeared to be very risky in the context of the split, because there was a real danger that any such efforts would be classified as ”extremist” attempts to ”destroy” the state. The situation favoured Kryčer’s wing competing for influence within HSD-SMS, and his project of centrist liberal party supporting land administration system. In 1993, Kryčer’s wing gained supremacy and Jan Kryčer was re-elected chairman (gaining in the 2nd round of the elections with 127 votes in favour and 112 votes against, his rival being Petr Kavan; cf. Dallago 1999: 34) As a result of the fragile compromise between the two wings, the party changed its name to ”Movement for Self-Governing Democracy of Moravia and Silesia” (HSDMS) and made a vague declaration of its social-liberal orientation. As a result, the situation was relatively stable, and the continuing conflicts within the movement and a split in the deputy club did not jeopardise the position of Jan Kryčer. One year later, the ”liberal wing” triumphed: HSDMS was transformed in the Bohemian-Moravian Centre Party (ČMSS) even though this change was only approved by a close majority of the party’s management. Nevertheless, the transformation from an ”illegible” movement into a ”centrist party with its strongest base in Moravia” was also confirmed by the 4th congress of ČMSS, still lead by Jan Kryčer (cf. Dallago 1999: 33-39). The price to pay for the transformation was an open conflict, i.e. the separation of the ”Brno group” who insisted on preserving the clearly defined Moravist identity and perpetuating the legacy of Boleslav Bárta. [9]

Simultaneously with the progressive decline of HSD-SMS continued the story of the Moravian National Party (MNS), an experiment with a radical pro-Moravian nationalist party. The Moravian National Party was formed in summer 1990 as an extra-parliamentary party. The institution congress took place in December 1990. MNS gave up the concept of Moravian Czech identity and adopted the principle of Moravian ethno-territorial identity as a national identity. The slogans calling for equal status of Moravia and Silesia were accompanied with claims for independence and self-determination of the Moravians and Silesians and for the revival of the Moravian state, sometimes involving provocative declarations of some leaders suggesting separation of Moravia from the Czech Republic and internationalisation of the ”Moravian issue” (cf. Pernes 1996: 244-245; Dallago 1999: 28). The personal interconnection between the Moravian National Party and the Movement for Self-Governing Democracy - Association for Moravia and Silesia, as well as the ”positive attitude” of Bárta as the leader towards this party do not lack interest. Boleslav Bárta may have seen some advantages of ”division of labour” between radical nationalists and moderate regionalists-federalists. This ”positive attitude” and co-operation continued yet for some time after his death (cf. Dallago 1999: 26). Thanks to co-operation with HSD-SMS, the Moravian National Party became a parliamentary party in 1992 (with two mandates in the Czech National Council), but not yet the protagonist of the Moravist movement.

The fragmentation of the Movement for Self-Governing Democracy - Association for Moravia and Silesia was reflected in the fragmentation of the whole Moravist movement. Six Moravist parties ran for the 1994 municipal elections. The Moravian Country Party (SMV) played a marginal role (with 22 mandates in small municipalities), and so did the two artificial ”puppet parties” HSD-SMS (with 19 mandates) and HSDMS (with 4 mandates) and also the Moravian-Silesian Movement (MSH, with 6 mandates – a group which split from HSD-SMS at an earlier stage). The Movement of Self-Governing Moravia and Silesia (HSMS) founded by the major anti-Kryčer group that left HSDMS (transformed then into ČMSS) got to the foreground (with 0.4 % of votes and 57 mandates) and competed now with the Moravian National Party (with 0.4% of votes and 33 mandates) (cf. Koudelka 1995: 64-65).

The Bohemian-Moravian Centre Party (ČMSS) which no longer declared itself as a genuine Moravist regional party gained only 0.8 % of votes and 428 municipal mandates (Koudelka 1995: 64). This electoral fiasco of the major successor party of HSD-SMS which lost its orthodox Moravist electorate without gaining new, led to negotiations on its merger with the Liberal Social Union (LSU) and the Agrarian Party (ZS) which first resulted in an alliance with LSU and ZS, [10] called the Bohemian-Moravian Centre Union (ČMUS), in December 1994 and eventually in a merger congress in Prague in February 1996 (cf. Fiala, Mareš 1997b: 310-311). [11]

In the meantime, the conflict between the fractions within the Moravian National Party (the party leader Ivan Dřímal versus the deputies Jiří Bílý and Petr Kavan) ended with the victory of Dřímal. A new opposition platform called Moravian National Unification (MNSj) was formed whose representatives left in spring 1996 for the Movement of Self-Governing Moravia and Silesia (HSMS). An attempt to unify Moravist parties in the early 1996 brought but feeble results. The Moravian National Party made an effort to co-operate with SMV, MSH and HSMS, but all that was made more difficult by the separation of the Moravian National Unification (MNSj) group. The expected abolition of the Movement of Self-Governing Moravia and Silesia (HSMS) did not realise. The party was only reorganised and changed its name into the Movement of Self-Governing Moravia and Silesia - Moravian National Unification (HSMS-MNSj) (cf. Fiala, Mareš 1997b: 311, 315; Dallago 1999: 48-50). The Moravian National Party also changed its name in the Moravian National Party - Movement of Silesian and Moravian Unification (MNS-HSMS; the label ”Movement of Silesian and Moravian Unification” was chosen and added on purpose to use the same abbreviation ”HSMS”). Apart from the traditional Moravian issues, there were some explicitly conservative elements in the platform of both the formations worth of interest. [12] HSMS and later the Movement of Self-Governing Moravia and Silesia - Moravian National Unification had always presented themselves as traditionalist movements underlining the value orientation expressed in the tirade ”patriotism-self-government-conservatism”. [13] The national-conservative position of MNS-HSMS reflected in the demand to for anti-immigration measures, a stricter interruption law, suppression of pseudo-religious sects, and renewal of the death penalty. [14] However, this platform did not gain protest votes, which was probably the only possible way to re-gain and/or preserve some relevance of the Moravist parties. The electoral result was catastrophic and only confirmed the decline of the electoral and political potential of the Moravist parties: the Movement of Self-Governing Moravia and Silesia - Moravian National Unification (HSMS-MNSj) gained only 0.42 % of votes and MNS-HSMS 0.27 %. The Bohemian-Moravian Centre Union (ČMUS) gained 0.42 % of votes. [15] All these formations became marginal extra-parliamentary formations (cf. Dallago 1999: 52).

Having failed in the elections, MNS-HSMS which rehabilitated its original name ”MNS” (the Moravian National Party) began to negotiate eventual merger with HSMS-MNSj and ČMUS. As a result, a Moravian-Silesian Coalition was made to run for the November 1996 Senate elections. However, none of the candidates of this alliance was elected or proceeded to the second round of the elections. [16] The Movement of Self-Governing Moravia and Silesia - Moravian National Unification (HSMS-MNSj) decided to abstain from the merger project. The Moravian National Party and the Bohemian-Moravian Centre Union merged in the Moravian Democratic Party (MDS) in April 1997 in order to ”revive the Moravian spirit” (cf. Dallago 1999: 55). [17] A list of candidates was made for the 1998 parliamentary elections including both the Movement of Self-Governing Moravia and Silesia - Moravian National Unification and the Moravian Democratic Party candidates (under the denomination of the Moravian Democratic Party) which only gained 0.37 % of votes (Dallago 1999: 57). [18] In the subsequent 1998 municipal elections, the Moravian Democratic Party gained 0.35 % of votes, the Movement of Self-Governing Moravia and Silesia - Moravian National Unification (HSMS-MNSj) 0.2 % and the Moravian Country Party (SMV) 0.02 % of votes (which meant a gain of 142, 35 and 24 mandates, respectively) (cf. Dallago 1999: 58). [19] These elections confirmed the peripheral position of both MDS and HSMS-MNSj within the Czech party arrangement.

Tentative Conclusions and Hypotheses

As said at the beginning, the initial success of the Moravist movement should be viewed as a product of an extraordinary and unrepeatable coincidence of heterogeneous factors among which those of conjunctural and/or mixed nature prevailed. The chances for the Moravist movement to continue, in the medium and long run, a genuine major political actor were only minimal, regardless of the particular strategy invented and pursued by its leadership. Of crucial importance for further development was the moment of failure of the Moravist movement, namely of its main political component, in the initial phase of Czechoslovak transformation when the movement failed to achieve any significant and permanent success in its efforts for territorial and administrative reorganisation of the state (on federal or only sub-federal level). Not only suffered the prestige of the movement but also – and primarily – institutional conditions failed to be created allowing the Moravist movement to make the best use of its sources of political legitimacy and mobilisation.

As a result, the movement failed to create the necessary political space and to gain a time enough to go through a test of its ability or inability to act as an instrument of aggregation and representation of territory based interests. The circumstance of the Movement for Self-Governing Democracy - Association for Moravia and Silesia having offered a broad circle of Moravian electorate an acceptable, ”soft” identitary option in 1990, including a self-definition against Prague and Bratislava, soon lost importance. Yet the stress laid on the nationalist element in the Moravist platform was rather a pragmatic, concomitant and basically reactive element resulting from the Slovak elites opposing themselves to the project of a territorial – and conscientiously not nationalist or ethno-nationalist – federalism (i.e. tripartite or trilateral federate system). Hence the need to ”have a Moravian nation to run for elections.” Soon it became clear that –politically speaking – this pragmatic nationalisation of the ”Moravian issue” was a mistake: it could have been an advantage only on the level of federal policy, while this precise level was relatively soon devalued due to the split of the federal Czechoslovak state. The strategy of combining regionalism {local patriotism} and a sort of ancillary nationalism or quasi-nationalism as interpreted by HSD-SMS for a number of reasons, both exogenous and endogenous, did not work. The federal model got in crisis anyway and the transfer of stress from a Czechoslovak tripartite federate state concept to a federate ”land” system model within the Czech Republic failed. This kind of nationalisation was counterproductive in the sphere of the Czech sub-federal politics and policies also because of being incomplete and unable to serve any meaningful political purpose. A genuine regionalist option and strategy would have been more advantageous in the medium and long run, provided it would have been able to the valorise Moravian regional and ”land” traditions, to profile specific interests of Moravian regional communities (in the framework of the conflict core – periphery) and to effectively interconnect the different local and sub-regional identities with the land-regional or macro-regional identity, which was necessary due to a marked polycephalous character of Moravia as a particular geopolitical space. It is yet possible and in a way probable that mere politicising the land-regional identity and cultivation of Moravian (land-regional and sub-regional) patriotism would have been insufficient to gain the potential of a relevant political actor. This however could not have been compensated by developing a sort of quasi-nationalist strategy, especially in a situation of absence of well defined ethnic, racial or religious differences that could be used for the construction of a national-regional Moravian identity and therefore it was impossible to separate effectively the regional community from the rest of the Czech nation in this ”nationalistic” way. [20] Identitary mobilisation could not be in the case of Moravia based on evident pre-constituted politically relevant ethnic and cultural and/or language differences. Of course, it was possible and advantageous to stress historical and cultural differences and examples of injustice committed by the centre on the periphery, but in the long run, it was an insufficient raison d’être of the Moravist political movement. Even less could such weak sources of political legitimacy and mobilisation be compensated by a transformation of the Moravist movement into a ”normal,” moderate Czech (Bohemian-Moravian-Silesian) or Czechoslovak party – thus scarifying or suppressing its Moravian characteristics (cf. Pernes 1996: 249-250). Such sacrifice would have only made sense in the case of a merger with a big and strong political party; otherwise it would be a self-destructive behaviour – as was eventually the case of the Bohemian-Moravian Centre Party and the Bohemian-Moravian Centre Union. As an independent minor – and under certain circumstances relevant – political actor, the Moravist movement or at least its core could have survived only if it had preserved the necessary coherence to be able to run the risk of laying stress on its being different from other parties, on cultivating its own sources of political legitimacy and developing a strategy of peripheral mobilisation. This coherence, however, was not preserved. The political suicide committed by Kryčer’s Movement for Self-Governing Democracy of Moravia and Silesia (HSDMS; then ČMSS) and the fragmentation of Moravist parties only underlined the trend towards disintegration and decline of the movement. Even though the Moravist parties drawn to the position of marginal actors eventually managed to change this trend, they have never managed to revert the situation, in spite of all the experiments in organisation, program innovations and attempts to unify or at least to co-operate more effectively. [21]

Abbreviations

ČMSS (Bohemian-Moravian Centre Party)
ČMUS (Bohemian-Moravian Centre Union)
HSD-SMS (Movement for Self-Governing Democracy -- Association for Moravia and Silesia)
HSDMS (Movement for Self-Governing Democracy of Moravia and Silesia)
HSMS (Movement of Self-Governing Moravia and Silesia)
HSMS-MNSj (Movement of Self-Governing Moravia and Silesia - Moravian National Unification)
MNS (Moravian National Party)
MNS-HSMS (Moravian National Party - Movement of Moravian-Silesian Unification)
MDS or MoDS (Moravian Democratic Party)
MOH (Moravian Civic Movement)
MSH (Moravian-Silesian Movement)
MSK (Moravian-Silesian Coalition)
SMV (Moravian Country Party)

Poznámky / Notes

1) It should be remembered, for example, that the ”Moravist” vote bank, especially during the early 1990s, could not be reduced to the actually mobilised electorates of HSD-SMS and of other minor Moravist parties and groupings. An attention must be paid to the fact, that in the 1991 population census 1.4 million inhabitants (i.e. 13.6% of population) declared themselves as being Moravian and Silesian nationality not existing before (cf. Daněk 1993: 249, 252).
2) A similar development was registered with the Moravian Country Party (SMV) which became part of the coalition Union of Farmers and Country People and experienced a complete electoral failure. Unlike MOH, the Moravian Country Party survived as a marginal (”countryside”) party of local character.
3) This ”tripartite” line (sometimes called ” trialismus”) was based on a ”trilateral” federalist concept of re-organising Czechoslovakia into a genuine federate state (Bohemia - Moravia and Silesia - Slovakia) (cf. Pernes 1996: 198-202).
4) The most important document from that period being the Charter for Moravia and Silesia of 20th January 1990.
5) Cf. Bárta, B. (1990): Co chce Hnutí za samosprávnou demokracii - Společnost pro Moravu a Slezsko, Informační bulletin HSM-SMS, n. 4, 1990, pp. 6-10. Cf. Fiala, Mareš 1997a: 117.
6) Moravskoslezská deklarace, in: Moravskoslezská neděle, (1990). Cit. in: Dallago 1999: 10.
7) Cf. various leaflets and materials of HSD-SMS from the electoral campaign in 1990.
8) However, this electoral success was not repeated in the municipal elections in November 1990: HSD-SMS gained only 4.16% of votes.
9) Struggling for the sources of political legitimacy, ČMSS had new political organisations registered to ”preserve” the label of HSD-SMS (Movement for Self-Governing Democracy - Association for Moravia and Silesia) and HSDMS (Movement for Self-Governing Democracy of Moravia and Silesia). This new HSD-SMS eventually ceased to exist while HSDMS, under the leadership of Aleš Kladivo played a role in the reorganisation attempts of the Moravian movement (cf. Dallago 1999: 39).
10) The Christian Social Union (KSU) became a member of the alliance, too.
11) Jan Jegla had been the chairman of the Bohemian-Moravian Centre Union (alliance) and then he was re-elected the chairman of the Bohemian-Moravian Centre Union (unified party).
12) There has been a strong predisposition toward a conservative social (and political) outlooks manifested by the ”paternalist values” orientation of the supporters and voters of HSD-SMS in 1990-1991 (cf. Musil, Rabušic, Mareš 1991).
13) Cf. for example Electoral Program of HSMS-MNSj (Šance Moravy 19. Volební noviny HSMS-MNSj; 1996) Cf. also Dallago 1999: 42.
14) Cf. leaflets and materials (including ”The Principles of Electoral Program of MNS”, 1996) of MNS from the period of electoral campaigns (for parliamentary and then for municipal elections) in 1996.
15) Cf. Elections results, 1996 (http://www.volby.cz/).
16) The candidates of the Moravian-Silesian Coalition participated in the competition in the 28 Moravian and Silesian electoral districts. The exception was represented by one Bohemian electoral district (n. 13 - Tábor); the candidate was nominated by the Bohemian-Moravian Centre Union. (cf. Dallago 1999: 54).
17) On which occasion some of the nationalist elements which in the past characterised the MNS platform were suppressed. Arguments used by MDS in the campaign before the parliamentary and municipal elections in 1998 as well as in the post-electoral period have been more ”moderate” with regard to those previously used by MNS. Cf. Political Program of MDS (January 1999), leaflet ”The Moravian Democratic Party is the Party of the Future of Moravia and Silesia”, MDS) etc.
18) Cf. Elections results, 1998 (http://www.volby.cz/).
19) Cf. Parliamentary and municipal elections on-line results (http://www.volby.cz/).
20) It is, however, difficult to assess properly the results of the 1991 population census (1.4 million inhabitants declared themselves as being Moravian and Silesian nationality) - now largely ignored - within this context.
21) However, I should emphasize that I do not aspire to make any definite conclusion with regard to the future of the Moravist movement and of the individual Moravist parties. It remains to be seen, for instance, how the emerging regional political arenas could and would be used by the Moravist parties. Of course, we have at least to wait for the results of regional elections in November 2000 to assess the performance of regional alliances of Moravist parties (The Moravian Coalition; The Moravian-Silesian Coalition; The Highlands Prosperity).

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    ISSN 1212-7817

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vydává Mezinárodní politologický
ústav Fakulty sociálních studií, Masarykova univerzita

A peer-reviewed on-line journal
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