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The Czech Republic Fifteen Years Later

Written by Jan Keller, this article appeared on the fourth issue of volume 8 of the journal European Journal of Social Theory in 2005.
 
The article discusses some aspects of developments in the Czech Republic during the 15 years since the downfall of the Communist regime. At the level of social structures, the dominant trend has been a rapid growth of inequality, which has blocked the development of a middle-class society. At the political level, the most salient tendency is the growth of a ‘silent majority’, not least due to the murky methods of privatization and the manifest corruption among the new elite. The problems of the ecological movement exemplify the difficulties faced by nascent civil societies in post-Communist conditions. Finally, the author tries to identify likely trends linked to the dynamic of globalization. Here the most serious problem is the stagnation or even decline of the employees and small entrepreneurs who were once expected to become the backbone of civil society.

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