The Myth of the Golden Republic: Czechoslovak Myth and Propaganda, 1914-1948

Thursday, September 18, 2008
4:00 pm - 6:00 pm
1118 IAB

The Great War ushered in the modern propaganda age. Every postwar European state used nationalist myth and propaganda to re-establish the boundaries of the national community and to renovate public concepts of good, evil, redemption, and sacrifice in the face of seeming threat. Czechoslovakia has been hailed as postwar Europe's most devoted democracy, an outpost of Western ideals in an Eastern Europe leaning dangerously toward fascism. In fact, that impression -- of the Czechs as native democrats, more Western than the West -- was carefully crafted and cultivated, and used for propaganda purposes both at home and abroad.

Andrea Orzoff, of New Mexico State University, will describe the Czechoslovak propaganda effort, and the nationalist myth contained within it, in a talk presenting the argument of her forthcoming book, Battle for the Castle: Czechoslovak Myth and Propaganda, 1914-1948: Oxford University Press, 2009.