Regina Wonisch (ed): Tschechen in Wien. Zwischen nationaler Selbstbehauptung und Assimilation(en)

(Czechs in Vienna. Between National Self-Assertion and Assimilation)

From the mid-19th century onwards, Vienna, as the capital of the Habsburg Monarchy, has attracted workers from the nearby regions of Southern Moravia and Southern Bohemia. The Czech and Slovak immigrants were needed in industry and in the craft trades but also as service staff – the famous “Bohemian cooks” – in the well-to-do households of the economically flourishing city.

No doubt, mutual cultural exchange has taken place. Nevertheless, the myth of Vienna as a tolerant, cosmopolitan fin-de-siècle metropolis might be challenged: Can the integration of the Viennese Czechs – taking place under considerable pressure – really be called an example of successful assimilation unique in Europe? Could it be that what at first glance appears such a smooth story of success is accompanied by hidden fractures, fragmentation and inconsistencies – due to social pressure exerted by the majority population or in the wake of changing frontiers and political systems? This question is to be analysed by looking more closely at individual phenomena of community life – fighting for the establishment of Czech schools, the significance of sports for society, Czech resistance during the Nazi occupation, but also the position of the Viennese Czechs in post-World-War-II Austria. The documentation of an exhibition organised by the Research Centre for the History of Minorities about “Ceská Víden – Czech Vienna” shows that the history of the Viennese Czechs may also be considered a paradigm in the debate about more recent migratory movements.

With articles by: Karl Brousek, Gero Fischer, Peter Hallama, Michael John, Margita Jonas, Wolfgang Maderthaner, Jana Pospíšilová, Viktor Velek and Regina Wonisch.

Löcker Verlag
12,5 x 20,5 cm
200 Seiten,ca. 20 s/w Abbildungen
€ 19,80
ISBN 978-3-85409-485-2