From Library Journal
When Czechoslovakia split into two separate nations in 1993, the world shrugged. Compared with the reunification of Germany and the disintegration of Yugoslavia, the creation of Slovakia and the Czech Republic was a minor political development. However, for Slovaks, their independence came after centuries of dominance by other nations. Kirschbaum (political science, York Univ.) has given the Western world the first popular history of Slovakia. Up until now, readers-and libraries-have had to make do with Jozef Lettrich's History of Modern Slovakia (Praeger, 1955) or Kirschbaum's own hard-to-find Slovak Politics: Essays on Slovak History (Slovak Inst. of Cleveland, 1983). Kirschbaum traces the development of Slovak culture from the Great Moravian Empire of the eighth century through the Middle Ages and Hapsburg rule. A Slovakian national identity finally emerged in the 1700s, and Kirschbaum skillfully chronicles the political fortunes of the 19th and 20th centuries. The impact of the world wars and Communist rule is balanced by the exhilaration of the democratic revolution in 1989 and the Slovaks' subsequent autonomy. This is a rich historical work, diligently researched (there are over 600 footnotes) and compellingly written. An important contribution to the literature on Eastern and Central Europe, it is highly recommended for academic or large public libraries.Thomas Karel, Franklin & Marshall Coll. Lib., Lancaster, Pa.
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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"Kirschbaum has given the Western world the first popular history of Slovakia...This is a rich historical work, diligently researched and compellingly written. An important contribution to the literature on Eastern and Central Europe...." - Library Journal