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2014 | 22 | 1 | 299-304

Article title

Závěrečné slovo. Shrnutí průběhu a výsledků vědecké konference „Okupací nezlomeni“. K 75. výročí 15. března 1939


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Closing Word Summarizing the Proceedings and Results of the Scientific Conference “Unbroken by the Occupation” Marking the 75th Anniversary of the 15th March 1939

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This year we mark a centenary of the outbreak of World War I. This event is closely related to our topic: the beginning of German occupation of the Bohemian Lands in March 1939. To follow the genesis of this relation we must go back to the Frankfurt Vorparlament in 1848. That institution was seeking an answer to the question what would a unified Germany look like, whether it would be “Big” or “Small”. The first idea of German Central Europe appeared in the notion of Mitteleuropa. The Germans, as the authors of the idea believed and propagated, were entitled to the leading role in that area owing to their civilization, cultural and economic maturity. Such a large, Central-Europe-wide Germany was also the aim of the Sudetengerman nationalists and their conflict with the Czech policy in Austria was thus motivated more geopolitically than just as a “mere” ethnic conflict. Mitteleuropa constituted Germany’s main war goal in the First World War, as proved by Prof. Fritz Fischer in his huge work that German historians, particularly those of older generation, initially opposed, and even hated. The occupation of Bohemian Lands by Germany in March 1939 constituted one of the new chapters of the Mitteleuropa Project adopted and implemented by the Nazis. It was supposed to be extended and include all New Europe controlled by them. Its historical genesis must not fall into oblivion, as without it an important part of explanation of the causes, sense and events of the 15 March 1939 would be missing. Contemporaries can feel it, historians should identify it.



  • Filozofická fakulta Univerzity Karlovy Praha, Czech Republic


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Publication order reference


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