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Nature Protests

The End of Ecology in Slovakia

by Edward Snadjr

Publication Year: 2008

As societies around the world are challenged to respond to ever growing environmental crises, it has become increasingly important for activists, policy makers, and environmental practitioners to understand the dynamic relationship between environmental movements and the state. In communist Eastern Europe, environmental activism fueled the rise of democratic movements and the overthrow of totalitarianism. Yet, as this study of environmentalism in Slovakia shows, concern for the environment declined during the post-communist period, an ironic victim of its own earlier success.

Published by: University of Washington Press

Series: Culture, Place, and Nature

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Foreword by K. Sivaramakrishnan

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pp. vii-viii

The study of social movements has long been a central area of scholarly inquiry. Such movements range widely from political protests by and for indigenous peoples to aspirations of northern middle classes for cleaner air and water, safer playgrounds, and healthy food. Social science inquiry into social and political...


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pp. ix-x

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pp. xi-xiv

The research for this book was made possible by grants from the National Science Foundation, the International Research and Exchanges Board (irex), and the Fulbright Institute for International Education (iie), as well as by support from the American Council for Collaboration in Education and Language Study (accels) and the Thomas Kukuika Memorial Scholarship...

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pp. 3-21

On earth day, april 22, 1989, seven months before Czechoslovakia's Velvet Revolution, the Bratislava City Branch of the Slovak Union of Nature and Landscape Protectors...

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1. Communist Environmentality

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pp. 22-47

In the process of building socialism, nature was regarded as a passive entity and,with trademark Marxist rationality, designated with the simple status of material resource. Nature was not a political subject, such as literature, or a trade union, or religion. It was, rather, in the state-socialist imagination, a concern of the scientist and the engineer...

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2. Hatchets versus the Hammer and Sickle

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pp. 48-73

Against the efforts of the socialist regimes in the Eastern Bloc and the Soviet Union to subdue and control culture emerged the dissident.Dissidentswere peoplewho did not necessarily reject socialism but who were dissatisfied with the status quo, did not agree with the methods or the manner of the regime's power...

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3. "Bratislava Aloud"

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pp. 74-97

No one gazing on the landscape of east europe in 1987 would have predicted-and no one in the West did predict-that communism's total demise would occur only two years later. Hindsight now affords us the ability to tease out the clues-some glaring, some not so obvious-that suggested what was about to happen. Throughout Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union...

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4. Nation over Nature

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pp. 98-122

On december 10, 1989, slovaks were allowed to leave their country freely for the first time in over forty years. On that day, border officers cut through the barbed-wire fencing separating a corridor of overgrown grass along the perimeter of Petrzalka from the manicured meadows and fields of Austria...

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5. Argonauts of the Eastern Bloc

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pp. 123-156

Freedom is like an open sea. while one has the choice to go in any direction, there is also the possibility of losing one's way. If, by the end of 1992, freedom had emboldened Slovaks to part ways with their Czech partners, freedom also brought widespread and remarkable changes to the newly independent state...

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6. Returning to the Landscape

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pp. 157-180

If slovakia's landscapes had changed significantly since 1989, one thing remained the same: in the summer Slovaks still left the city for rest and relaxation. Like elsewhere throughout East Europe, in Slovakia August is the traditional vacation month.A visitor to the capital city during this month, perhaps on a side trip from Vienna...

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7. Conclusion: Slovakia in an Age of Post-Ecology

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pp. 181-194

In the early morning hours of a september saturday in 1995, a line of people waited patiently on the edge of a sleepy Bratislava square for Eduscho, a new Austrian-owned coffee chain, to open. They had responded to an advertisement in a city weekly for free packets of coffee, which the store was offering to promote...


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pp. 195-210


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pp. 211-226


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pp. 227-242

E-ISBN-13: 9780295800547
E-ISBN-10: 0295800542
Print-ISBN-13: 9780295988566
Print-ISBN-10: 0295988568

Publication Year: 2008

Series Title: Culture, Place, and Nature