The Prague Spring as a Social Movement

  • Zdenĕk Strmiska


At first sight the Prague Spring seems like a vast wave, amazing in its width and singleness. And this is no deception: history offers few opportunities to observe a social movement so extensive as to embrace a whole nation, leaving little room either for opponents or for those passive elements in society that play no part in it. Its unity is apparent from the unanimous ‘thumbs-down’ given to the monocratic system that preceded the reforms, as much as from the enthusiastic support given to the reforms themselves with their promise of democracy. Public opinion polls showed more than 90 or even 95 per cent over some issues backing the basic ideas of the movement and reassuring its leaders of their approval. Even if we limit ourselves to the overall results of the polls that were carried out we reach the remarkable conclusion that more than four-fifths of those questioned were active supporters of the movement, or were at least on its side.


Political Party Social Movement Communist Party Party Member Public Opinion Poll 
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© British Broadcasting Corporation 1989

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  • Zdenĕk Strmiska

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