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Czechia 30 years On: An Imperfect Oligarchy Without Emancipatory Alternative

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Abstract

This chapter analyses the causes of the crisis of democracy in the Czech Republic and the possibilities of a chronological analysis of the transformation decades. The crisis of democracy is manifested in the Czech Republic above all by mass disillusionment with democratic politics, and by the open access of oligarchs to political power. Unlike approaches that see this turn as a discontinuity, the chapter describes it as one of the possible and logical results of the whole transformation process. This process is reconstructed as a competition between two capitalist factions and respective political projects: neoliberal nationalism and liberal globalism. The chapter presents a chronological analysis of the three post-communist decades based on the three periods of rule of various factions (1992–1998 neoliberal nationalist rule, 2002–2010 globalist rule, 2013–? oligarchic rule), and three interregna (1990–1992, 1997–2002, 2008–2013). The chapter describes the interests and composition of the factions which competed for power in the transformation decades, analyses the main problems they dealt with during the interregna (economic transformation, democracy, economic dependence) and then looks at the characteristics of the main competing discourses (the naturalness and morality of the market, civil society, democratic majoritarianism, discourse of colony, discourse of corruption).

Keywords

  • Czech Republic
  • Postsocialism
  • Disillusionment
  • Neoliberalism
  • Nationalism Globalism

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Correspondence to Ondřej Slačálek .

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Slačálek, O., Šitera, D. (2022). Czechia 30 years On: An Imperfect Oligarchy Without Emancipatory Alternative. In: Gagyi, A., Slačálek, O. (eds) The Political Economy of Eastern Europe 30 years into the ‘Transition’. International Political Economy Series. Palgrave Macmillan, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-78915-2_8

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