The Celebrations of the Slovak National Uprising as a Platform for the Creation of Enemies of Slovakia

Abstract

The focus of this study lies in the instrumental use of history as a tool for the legitimization of political claims. Our paper is related to the Slovak National Uprising, which plays a crucial role in the national mythology of Slovakia. This role is a reason why the annual celebrations of this historical event are one of the most important political occasions in the country. Many politicians use the celebrations as an opportunity to highlight many political issues and address a broad audience. Using semi-participant observation, we analysed five anniversary celebrations of the event (2015–2019) and the securitization strategies inherited in the speeches of politicians at the celebrations. We showed that not only topics related to the legacy of the anti-fascist uprising (e.g. contemporary right-wing extremism) are securitized or serve as objects of the creation of moral panic during these events. Some other, unrelated actors/phenomena are securitized or labelled as a threat as well – especially immigration and the politics of the EU. This fact notwithstanding, the legacy of the SNU was always used for the legitimization of securitization/creation of moral panic. 

Author Biographies

Vladimír Naxera, University of West Bohemia, Pilsen, Czech Republic, vnaxera@kap.czu.cz

Vladimír Naxera is an Assistant Professor at the Department of Politics and International Relations, the University of West Bohemia. His current field of interest lies in the research of political populism, anti-immigrant and anti-corruption rhetorics of political actors, the instrumental use of history, and field research of public ceremonies and their political consequences.

Petr Krčál, University of West Bohemia, Pilsen, Czech Republic, petrkrcal@gmail.com

Petr Krčál is a lecturer and researcher at the Department of Politics and International Relations, the University of West Bohemia. His main research interest lies in the research of political populism, performance of politics and the instrumental use of history.

Section
Research Articles