Historický ústav akademie věd České republiky, v. v. i.

roč. 25, 2017, č. 1



Kateřina TVRDÁ
Heinrich Eduard Herz (1785–1849) Geschichte eines jüdischen
Zuckerfabrikanten [Heinrich Eduard Herz (1785–1849). The History of one Jewish Businessman]
s. 1‒40

Velmocenská politika carského Ruska a Osmanská říše za Velké války
[The Great Power Politics of Tsarist Russia and the Ottoman Empire during the Great War (1914‒1916)]
s. 41‒70

Marián MANÁK
Revizionistické aktivity Maďarska v správách československých diplomatov
v USA v rokoch 1919‒1921
[The revisionist activities of Hungary in the reports of Czechoslovak diplomats in the USA in the period 1919‒1921]
s. 71–88

Jaroslav ŠEBEK
Katolická akce jako nástroj papežského centralismu a její recepce
v meziválečném Československu
[Catholic Action as a tool of Papal centralism and its reception in interwar Czechoslovakia]
s. 89–111

Michal PEHR
Křesťanské odbory v meziválečném Československu
[Christian unions within interwar Czechoslovakia]
s. 113‒152

Budování státní řízené propagandy za druhé republiky (1938‒1939)
[Building of State Managed Propaganda in the Second Republic (1938‒1939)]
s. 153–166

Jak to bylo s vládním vojskem v roce 1943. (Sonda do dějin Protektorátu Čechy a Morava)
[How it was with the Government Army in 1943 (A Probe into the History of the Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia)]
s. 167‒199

Otázka slezské samosprávy a budování „lidové demokracie”
v Československu po roce 1945
[Silesian autonomy and building a ‘people’s democracy’ in Czechoslovakia post-1945]
s. 201‒230

Housing issues in Ostrava between 1918‒1948 from the perspective of social
[Housing issues in Ostrava between 1918‒1948 from the perspective of social workers]
s. 231‒259

Uvedení divadelní hry Rolfa Hochhutha „Náměstek“ v Československu
[Introduction of the Theatre play by Rolf Hochhuth in the Czechoslovakia]
s. 261‒278


Dálnice pohledem československého tisku koncem 30. let 20. století
[Expressways as viewed by the Czechoslovak press at the end of the 1930s]
s. 279‒297


Jan RATAJ a Miloslav MARTÍNEK, Česká politika 1848‒1918, Praha,
Metropolitan University Prague Press 2015, 577 s. ISBN 978-80-87956-12-0.
(Marie L. Neudorflová)
s. 299‒304

Jan RŮŽIČKA, Maloměšťáci s otevřenou myslí. Obecní reprezentace Bučovic
a Slavkova (1850‒1914), Brno, Matice moravská 2016, 401 s.
ISBN 978-80-87709-16-0.
(Andrea Pokludová)
s. 304‒306

Jaroslava HOFFMANNOVÁ, Prvenství žen. Ženy iniciativní, vzdělané a tvořivé,
Praha, Ústav T. G. Masaryka, o. p. s., a Masarykův ústav a Archiv AV ČR, v. v. i. 2016, 208 s. ISBN 978-80-86142-56-2, 978-80-87782-65-1.
(Marie L. Neudorflová)
s. 307‒308

Jaroslav JANDA, Moje vzpomínky na světovou válku 1914–1918. K vydání
připravila Jaroslava Hlaváčková, Praha, Národní archiv 2016, 272 s.
ISBN 978-80-7469-050-1.
(Vojtěch Kessler)
s. 308‒310

Dalibor VÁCHA, Ostrovy v bouři. Každodenní život československých legií
v ruské občanské válce (1918–1920), Praha, Epocha 2016, 440 s.
ISBN 978-80-7425-288-4.
(Vojtěch Kessler)
s. 310‒312

Tomáš PETRÁČEK, Církev, tradice, reforma. Odkaz Druhého vatikánského
koncilu, Praha, Vyšehrad 2016, 248 s.
ISBN 978-80-7429-643-7.
(Marek Šmíd)
s. 312‒316

Emília HRABOVEC, Slovensko a Svätá stolica v kontexte vatikánskej východnej
politiky (1962‒1989), Bratislava, Univerzita Komenského v Bratislave 2016, 400 s. ISBN 978-80-223-4070-0.
(Marek Šmíd)
s. 316‒320

Jiří PERNES, Zprávy z Prahy 1953, Praha, Academia 2016, 409 s.
ISBN 978-80-200-2568-5.
(Martin Dolejský)
s. 320‒321


Kateřina TVRDÁ
Heinrich Eduard Herz (1785–1849). The History of one Jewish Businessman

The objective of this study was to outline the life of one forgotten Czech entrepreneur of Jewish origin in the first half of the 19th century. Although sources on the figure of Heinrich Eduard Herz (1785–1849) are rather limited, I was able to at least partially reconstruct his life and works, as the first time this has ever been done. Documents on this topic are located not just in Czech territory, but also in Vienna. Herz came from an important Jewish family which had settled in Leipzig but he moved to Prague at the end of the first decade of the 19th century, became son-in-law to Leopold von Lämmel and started doing business in the sugar industry. He later founded his own sugar refinery in Libněves and also built a refinery in Prague. He converted to Christianity and is buried in Prague’s Olšany Cemetery. One of the benefits of this study is certain findings regarding Herz’s Prague refinery, as previously academic literature had only referred to its existence, with its precise address and the history of its establishment remaining hidden in archival sources. In some respects, this paper opens up questions for which answers are hard to come by. In the context of Czech history of the 19th century, this particularly includes ths issue of expressing the terms ‘patriotism’, ‘Czechness’, ‘Germanness’, and ‘Jewishness’, ideas which intermingle. The question of whether (and if so to what extent) H E Herz was a patriot, whether in the territorial or national meaning of the term, is very difficult to answer no matter how hard one tries. On the one hand, he was a member of a number of local cultural and economic associations, although on the other hand the archives do not contain any strong expressions of his nationalism or patriotism.
Keywords: History, 19th Century, Czech Lands, Economy, Sugar Industry, the Jews, Heinrich Eduard Herz

The Great Power Politics of Tsarist Russia and the Ottoman Empire during the Great War (1914‒1916)

For centuries, the Ottoman Empire had an important status in international relations, for which the term ‘the Eastern Question’ is generally used. It had its own imperial policy and was also subject to the imperial policies of European powers. During the second half of the 19th century and early 20th century in particular, financial loans from the other powers were important for its continued existence, allowing it to guide the Ottoman Empire’s domestic development and foreign policy. All its problems later came to a head during the course of the First World War. The Ottoman Empire’s traditional rival was Tsarist Russia, which eventually determined the principal objective of its policy regarding Istanbul as controlling the strategic straits of the Bosporus and Dardanelles between the Black and Mediterranean Sea. The First World War provided Russia with further opportunity to pursue its own imperial demands against the Ottoman Empire. Even during the course of the July crisis following the Sarajevo assassination, Russian diplomacy immediately got to work. Along with its British and French allies, Russia first tried to prevent the Ottoman Empire from joining the war on Germany and Austria-Hungary’s side. At the turn of October and November of 1914, the Ottoman Empire came out in opposition to the Entente. As such, Russia, France and Britain began discussions on dividing out the ‘legacy’ of the Ottoman Empire, during which the often contradictory interests of the Entente powers came into conflict, powers who also feared the outbreak of Islamic nationalism in the form of a ‘Holy war’. The first result was the agreement of March 1915 on the division of the Ottoman Empire into zones of influence. In the subsequent period, the powers to the agreement decided to exploit Arab and anti-Ottoman nationalism in the context of the overall course of the First World War. They promised to establish a ‘kingdom’ of independent Arab states in the Middle East in order to gain more allies against the Ottoman Empire. This resulted in the detailed agreement of May 1916 on the divison of the Ottoman Empire. Russia was to gain the European areas of Istanbul, the Bosporus, Dardenelles and Armenia; France was to gain Syria and Lebanon; and Great Britain Mesopotamia (Iraq). The agreement was based on the establishment of Arab states, with an international administration for Palestine and the city of Jerusalem. The holy sites of Mecca and Medina were to remain under Arab control. The revolution in Russia and the outcome of the First World War, however, transformed the original plans of the Middle East’s future in a significant manner. An independent Turkey was founded in Anatolia, while French and British interests began to encounter conflicts with Arab states who desired complete independence. There were also conflicts between the interests of the Christian, Jewish and Muslim religions, in particularly over the status of Jerusalem such that the whole Middle Eastern region became a focus of various conflicts, something it remains to this day and something the international community must still confront.
Keywords: History, 20th Century, Russia, Ottoman Empire, First World War, international relations

Marián MANÁK
The revisionist activities of Hungary in the reports of Czechoslovak diplomats in the USA in the period 1919‒1921

After establishment of the Republic of Czechoslovakia in autumn of 1918, the country’s diplomatic missions were gradually created abroad, including the appointment of the first chargé d’affaires in the USA and creation of consulates in several American cities. The specific content of the work of Czechoslovak diplomats as the representatives of the newly established republic in this period was also adequate acquisition of information about the revisionist activities of countries (especially Hungary), which questioned the Versailles system. The Czechoslovak diplomats in the USA for this reason sensitively responded to the visits of the Hungarian political leaders and their comments on Czechoslovakia, which were carried by the American press. In response to this, the embassy made an effort to publish positive reports about the Republic of Czechoslovakia and Hungary and designated Hungarian propaganda as an extreme threat to peace and stability in post-war Europe, while the Czechoslovak diplomats did not hesitate in demanding an explanation of the problematic statements also from the President of the United States. From 1922, the number of reports on Hungarian propaganda in the reports of diplomats in the USA declined in connection with the adoption of the Act on the dethroning of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine in Hungary as well as for reason of signature of the, so-called, Treaty of Lány between the representatives of the Republic of Czechoslovakia and Austria and accession of Hungary to the United Nations. In Budapest, they drew the conclusion from the arisen situation that without the inevitable substantial changes in the foreign policy constellation of Europe, further attempts at the revision of the peace talks had no chance of success and in the international context, Hungary withdrew and assumed a passive attitude in the issue of revisionism only at the end of the 20s.
Keywords: History, 20th Century, international relations, Czechoslovakia, Czechoslovak-American relations, revisionism, Hungarian propaganda

Jaroslav ŠEBEK
Catholic Action as a tool of Papal centralism and its reception in interwar Czechoslovakia

Within Europe, the interwar era was a period of great community, social and political transformation set in motion by the First World War. The Catholic Church was not isolated from these dramatic processes and reversals, neither at a Europe-wide level nor within the Czech lands, and its leaders had to seek out methods and ways to respond to the dynamic developments occurring in post-war society. Furthermore, even before the First World War the Catholic Church had slowly been losing influence amongst large parts of the social classes, in particular amongst workers, the middle classes and within intellectual debate and had been unable to respond adequately to processes linked to social and cultural modernisation. As in other countries, Church circles were confronted with a growth in secular tendencies. Furthermore, the post-war trend in Czechoslovakia deepened the anti-clerical mood from before the war in many regards. The religious situation in Czechoslovakia did not just develop in response to the political, community and social context of the time, and it must also be viewed in a wider context as an escalation of conflict between modernisation and anti-modernisation tendencies expressed within the Catholic Church in the second half of the 19th century and early 20th century in particular. As a papal project, Catholic Action was an expression of an attempt at a spiritual reconstruction of Christianity and its adaptation to the modern conditions it was operating in, as seen in the response of leaders in papal circles to the development of the situation in Czechoslovakia. Catholic Action played a key role in seeking out methods for how to define itself towards the challenges and changes brought about through a secular method of thinking and considering the world, a militant anti-clericalism and last but not least the rise of dictatorial ideologies opposing the Church. Church leaders focused their activities against these ideologies on promoting Catholic discourses on all major topics. Catholic Action activities, which were undoubtedly a centralised papal project, helped in many countries including Czechoslovakia to develop autonomous modern spiritual discourses. Specifically, experience of Catholic Action influenced some of the post-war generation of Czech Catholics because the community founded on their ideas shaped the identity of lay people engaged in the battle against the Communist regime.
Keywords: History, 20th Century, Czechoslovakia, Vatican, Catholic Action, the Papacy, religion, Catholicism

Michal PEHR
Christian unions within interwar Czechoslovakia

This study looks at First Republic Christian peoples’ unions, which comprised one of the key constituents of the union movement in Czechoslovakia at the time, built primarily on party principles. Only relatively little attention has been paid to this topic in Czechoslovak historiography. Within Czech society, these unions were established in 1902 and following the establishment of an independent Czechoslovakia, the organisations underwent significant development. The unions played a key role not just in improving the social status of workers, but Catholic unions were also of fundamental importance in maintaining the influence of Christianity (specifically the Catholic Church) amongst workers and served to maintain religiosity within the working class, which had been under threat from the modernising secular trends in interwar Czechoslovakia. In this regard, we should note that the objective of Christian (Catholic) trade unionists was essentially to limit the influence of socialist or generally left-wing unions. In this regard, their membership was modelled on Belgian Catholic unions which had become a significant counterbalance to socialist unions. The activity of the peoples’ unions ended with the dissolution of the Czechoslovak state and the creation of a single union organisation during the Nazi occupation. People’s unions, and all Christian unions in general, based their philosophy primarily on the promotion of Christian solidarity and the rejection of Marxism and liberalism. Religious unions were created not just within the Czech environment, but also within the different nationalities which lived in the First Republic, and over time these unions began to co-operate with each other. Paradoxically, this was assisted by the division within peoples’ unions. The crisis which occurred resulted in greater co-operation of Christian unions which were operating at the time and the creation of central offices bringing together Christian unions within Czechoslovakia. This portended the possible future creation of a Catholic bloc, something which was subject to lively discussion and speculation during the 1930s. Bearing in mind that it was a union organisation linked to the Czech Peoples’ Party which was in the government coalition and also Slovak unions linked to Hlinka’s party which was in opposition at the time, this was in certain regards a unique situation which commanded much public attention. After the Second World War, the original Christian unions became part of the nationwide trade union centre, ROH.
Keywords: History, 20th Century, Czechoslovakia, Catholic Church, union movement

Building of State Managed Propaganda in the Second Republic (1938‒1939)

The study, based on so far unpublished papers, documents what ways the regime of the Second Republic used to eliminate the liberal tradition of Czech free press and radio and made media serve the needs of ruling state-party – The Party of National Unity. In the first part it analyses the after-Munich, anti-democratic and anti-semitic media campaign which promoted the ascension of the extreme right wing to the power and was a part of political cleansing against the representatives of previous liberal democratic regime. The attention is also paid to the quietening state censorship, auto-censorship and elimination of free press and culture. The heart of the paper focuses on the institutional and content making of offensive propaganda whose implementation Prime Minister Rudolf Beran was in charge of. With the help of German Nazi specialists in the black propaganda it was to get over the enlightening, unbiased, non-party aim of propaganda of the First Republic and submit Czech society to pressure of equal, re-educational ideologization in the anti-democratic, radical, conservative and fascist spirit.
Keywords: History, 20th Century, Czechoslovakia, Nazi Germany, fascism, antisemitism, propaganda, the media

How it was with the Government Army in 1943
(A Probe into the History of the Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia)

The article makes a probe into the history of the Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia focusing on an attempt of a Czech quisling Emanuel Moravec to send the Government Army to the front on the German side in 1943. The Government Army was established in July 1939 and formally put under the control of the State President Emil Hácha. Since the outbreak of the Second World War in September 1939 and especially German-Soviet war in June 1941 so-called Czech activists repeatedly tried to send the Government Army (or other Czech units) to the front. Adolf Hitler admittedly declared that the Czechs would not be compelled to combat under arms, but the demands of the collaborators in spite of it were a menace to the Czech national interests. The most important attempt to assert these demands began in January 1943. Emanuel Moravec, by the will of the occupying force the Minister of Education and Popular Enlightenment from 1942, then used an illness and decrease of physical and mental powers of President Hácha. The State President wanted to achieve an amnesty for Czech political prisoners on the tenth anniversary of the Nazi seizure of power in Germany. Moravec offered in the name of Hácha to the German State Secretary K. H. Frank to send the Government Army to the front as a counter-service for an eventual amnesty. Frank turned down President’s attempt at an amnesty and at the same time made it possible for Moravec to exert pressure on Hácha and the protectorate government in the issue of the offer of the Government Army. None of the ministers dared to dissociate himself explicitly from the offer for the fear of Moravec. The government left the decision to Dr Hácha. The State President, however, entirely lacked any will as a consequence of his illness (arteriosclerosis). He was utmost desperate and talked about his suicide, but he was not able to resist. The people round Hácha made the situation even more difficult for him: His daughter Milada Rádlová was decidedly against the offer of the Government Army, but the head of Hácha’s office August Popelka recommended to repeat, for tactical reasons, this offer which in every case would not be accepted by Hitler. In the end, Hácha in a conversation with Frank at the beginning of February accompanied the offer with a number of comments that invalidated it entirely. Frank consulted it with H. H. Lammers, the head of the office of the Chancellor of the Reich, and they decided not to submit it to Hitler. The worthless offer would have made an impression of mockery after the catastrophe of the German army by Stalingrad.
Keywords: History, the 20th Century, the Protectorate, the Government Army, front-line deployment, Emil Hácha, Emanuel Moravec

Silesian autonomy and building a ‘people’s democracy’ in Czechoslovakia post-1945

Endeavours to restore Silesian autonomy were an expression of traditional local patriotism and an attempt to transform the previous order in the spirit of a ‘revolutionary’ reconstruction of the Republic. The creation of the Ostrava branch of the Moravia-Silesian Lands Committee was perceived as a compromise which also expressed an acknowledgement of the specificity of the problems of Czech Silesia and neighbouring districts in north-eastern Moravia. Discussions on further branch perspectives revealed differing ideas on the further operation of the administrative system. The outcome of these different concepts was competency disputes between Ostrava and Brno and emotive rhetoric in the regional press. The dissolution of Silesia as an independent administrative unit in the interwar period was typically described as an injustice which did not respect Silesia’s importance and uniqueness. Thus calls for the restoration of Silesian autonomy were coupled with criticism of the First Republic, its administrative system being characterised as subject to excessive inconsiderate centralism and bureaucracy. In this interpretation, restoration of administrative independence was an expression of true ‘people’s democracy’. Typically, demands for the restoration of Silesian autonomy were linked with territorial demands, expressed together in memoranda and demonstrations practically throughout the whole of Czech Silesia. Efforts to acquire administrative autonomy were shared across the political spectrum within the region, and also influenced the branch’s relations with the National Lands Committee in Brno. Following the 1946 election, the communists began to implement a new form of administrative order, including at a local level, allowing them to say the branch was at a level below Region.
Keywords: History, 20th Century, Czechoslovakia, Silesia, public administration, national committees

Housing issues in Ostrava between 1918‒1948 from the perspective of social workers

Housing policy has been and continues to be a significant part of social policy. The interventions of housing policy maintain a balance in the housing market and certify financial affordability of adequate housing for even the lowest income groups. This article aims to analyze the involvement of social workers in addressing housing issues in the city of Ostrava in the context of housing policy of the former Czechoslovakia. Social work was actively involved in the application of housing policy measures, ensuring their practical realisation. In terms of chronology, the project focuses primarily on the first half of the 20th century, which is related to the professionalization of social work in Czechoslovakia. The goal is to describe and analyze the development of housing policy in the reporting period in Czechoslovakia and also to compare it with the interventions of social work in specific areas of the city. In terms of methodology, the project is anchored by historical research, i.e. the method of discourse analysis. The object of research is the primary documents deposited in the Archives of the City of Ostrava and the Archives of the District of Vítkovice, supplemented by available material of a secondary nature. The housing issue and the ways to deal with it in Ostrava more or less followed the developments in the whole country. The merging of the surrounding municipalities with Moravská Ostrava is dated to 1924. The newly established municipal authority was comprised of several departments. It also included a social care department, which functioned in operation without any interruption during WWII. Based on investigations carried out in the applicant's household, the staff member of a social care department elaborated a short report on the applicant’s family, property and income conditions, including his/her family members and status the applicant’s right of domicile. Professional training of social workers in Ostrava was documented after WWII with the establishment of a two-year school for the training of social workers. This educational establishment was run under the auspices of the vocational school for female occupations. From graduation reports it's apparent that the topic of housing policy and residential care appeared in the curriculum of the school. Thus the emphasis was laid on the readiness of future professional social workers for the performance of residential care within the departments of state institutions. It can be concluded that social work as a practical activity was actively involved in addressing the housing issue in Ostrava during the reporting period.
Keywords: History, 20th Century, Czechoslovakia, residential care, social care, social work, Ostrava

Introduction of the Theatre play by Rolf Hochhuth in the Czechoslovakia

It is not an easy task to evaluate the play Náměstek’s tour of Czech theatres. Undoubtedly, the performance of this play was one of the most noted media events of 1966; compared to other productions, Náměstek was subjected to unprecedented media coverage and drew the attention of all the newspapers of the time. The play’s artistic quality was entirely overshadowed by the play’s political dimension, on which most attention was focused. As can be expected to some extent, the matter was exploited as a propaganda tool in the fight against the Roman Catholic Church. One can claim that in Czechoslovakia Hochhuth’s play became a tool of state cultural and anti-Church policy. It is thus all the more striking that the production did not become a more permanent feature of theatrical repertoire and instead receded into the background following its great success in its first season. Audience interest fell away very fast following the undoubtedly escalated media campaign, and this can be seen in a reduced number of performances and falling visitor numbers. The not particularly high quality of individual productions in general likely played a part in this fall in interest. Even art critics of the time, entirely faithful to communist ideology, with rare exceptions did not evaluate the play as being of high theatrical quality. Practically the only argument in the play’s favour was its historicity, anti-clericism and documentary quality. As later research of Pope Pius XII demonstrated, the historical accuracy and veracity of the play is highly dubious.
Keywords: History, 20th Century, Czechoslovakia, Culture, Theatre, Rolf Hohchhuth, the Deputy, Pius XII., Roman Catholic Church, Holocaust

Expressways as viewed by the Czechoslovak press at the end of the 1930s

This article looks at motorway construction within the former Czechoslovakia, in particular between 1938 and 1940 as viewed by the press at the time. The Munich Agreement led to many regions seceding from Czechoslovakia, which also led to a disruption to transport infrastructure, in particular in the east-west direction. Leaders of the Second Republic endeavoured to overcome this problem by constructing a motorway from Prague to Brno and the border with Slovakia. This was a highly complex project and it drew a lot of media attention. Periodicals at the time focused primarily on the reasons for the construction itself, and in particular showcased the whole plan to the public at a time when construction plans had not yet been completed. There was also a lot of speculation about the direction the motorway was to take, and, e.g., construction of a ringroad around Prague. It was also important for the media to inform future motorway users of the rules for future use of the motorway. At the same time, periodicals looked at various aspects of the construction, such as its impact on tourism, travel and business. Construction was restricted during the war, and it was stopped completely in April 1943. Media articles, however, did not just focus on the motorway from Prague to Slovakia, but also the construction of another national motorway, specifically the motorway from Wroclaw to Vienna. Although this was an unwanted road dictated by the Third Reich, the vast majority of periodicals gave a positive spin on its importance. Almost all magazines compared domestic motorways and those abroad. Particularly popular were records in construction speed and motoway size. Events before the Second World War and shortly after it broke out meant that the media was essentially unable to give a negative picture of German allies, and as such costly motorway constructions in Italian-occupied Ethiopia were evaluated as being of great benefit. On the other hand, evaluations of motorways in the USA were not very positive in nature, despite the fact that the greatest number of motorways in the world had been built there before the Second World War.
Keywords: History, 20th Century, Czechoslovakia, transport, motorways, journalism