Modernisation or Decline? Slovak Farmers in the Mirror of Technology in 1938 - 1945

Modernizácia alebo úpadok? Slovensky roľník v zrkadle techniky v rokoch 1938-1945

The most numerous section of the Slovak society in the interwar period of 1918-1938 was formed by farmer families. Although agriculture was the most important branch of the national economy, it lagged behind the developed European countries. At the end of the 1930s, modern technologies found way also to the Slovak farmer families. This new phenomenon was clearly visible in the most fertile regions in the south and west of Slovakia. However, the Vienna Arbitration deprived the Slovak agriculture of its best land. During the Slovak war state (1939-1945), there was a sharp drop in the production of basic agricultural commodities. Farmer families struggling with inefficient technological equipment of their farms started using the first electric engines and other electric devices although, in the beginning, with little confidence. War events, traditional ways of cultivating soil, resistance against innovations and introduction of modern methods in agricultural production caused that the Slovak agriculture fell back by several years and became a serious danger to the alimentary base of the state.