"Vráťme si mesto!" Prejavy nespokojnosti "mestského občana" v politickom diskurze v Prešove 1918 - 1938

"Vráťme si mesto!" Prejavy nespokojnosti "mestského občana" v politickom diskurze v Prešove 1918 - 1938
Abstract: 

The paper aims to provide an analysis of the politics of two local interest groups of Prešov, the so-called city parties, as specific forms of middle class dissatisfaction in the interwar period. Based on contemporary election results and archival sources, the first part of the study examines the political behaviour of the inhabitants of Prešov between 1920 and 1935, which helps to determine to what extent the city parties were popular among the multilingual and multi-religious voters. The second part investigates the social composition and the political discourse of the city parties. These local political groups were supported by 10-12% of the voters. Most of their followers were organized among the liberal middle classes, who were not able to identity with the politics of the big parliamentary parties. Their members defined themselves mainly against the Communist and Catholic movement. However, they also criticized the measures of the Czechoslovak government. And at the level of discourse they expressed dissatisfaction with the domestic policy of Czechoslovakia in the form of a virtual community of city burghers, regardless of their ethnic backgrounds. It is argued that because of the high percentage of Hungarian and Jewish intellectuals and entrepreneurs among the leaders and supporters of the local parties, this type of local politics might have been an alternative to the Jewish and Hungarian national politics at a local level.