Czechs and Slovaks: long divorced but still close | Radio Prague
Czech Republic and Slovakia: Parted twins are grown-ups now In the newspapers of 17 years ago, discussions of Czech-Slovak relations were focused on more dramatic issues than the niceties of pronunciation . Write to us to get a quote. A look at the Czech and Slovak Republics twenty years after the Velvet Divorce. Czech historian J.V. Polišenský's History of Czechoslovakia in outline (), . colonized, feudal relations were established and market places developed into words that Masaryk loved to quote appear: "I too believe in God, that after the .
I have met people who told me that they love to hear my Slovak, that they miss Slovak a lot and think it is a beautiful language so why not use it or continue using it even if you are in the Czech Republic, but unfortunately I have also met people who said they were of a strong conviction that if you come to this country and settle here permanently you should learn the language and use it on all occasions.
Has that ever been a problem? I think the two mentalities, the two cultures are very similar and so there is no significant cultural gap between the two of us. And, if we are different, then it is more in terms of who we are as individuals, as people.
It is true that I am different from my husband —much more energetic and lively and impulsive, but we complement each other nicely. And I honestly do not think that it has that much to do with our cultural backgrounds. I think it is more about who we are as individual people. Will you be speaking Slovak to them and want them to be aware of their cultural heritage?
I think the best way would be for him to speak Czech and for me to speak Slovak so that the child is conscious of the two cultural backgrounds; conscious of the different cultural backgrounds that make him or her so to speak. So I would prefer keeping Slovak so that the child learns Slovak and is bilingual.
It is not like I really miss it — when the occasion arises and I feel like doing it then I simply go. So it is not a matter of nostalgia, just something that I love about Slovakia and that is worth seeing and experiencing in Slovakia.
And sometimes I miss Slovak. But other than that, I think I am fine. I am not talking about business now but relations on the human level.
Do you feel that Czechs and Slovaks have a very special relationship still or are the bonds coming loose?
Dissolution of Czechoslovakia
Merely on the linguistic level I am experiencing it more and more, especially in Prague, though not so much when I am in Moravia. People do not understand you, or they say they do not understand you, and you have to repeat your sentences two or three times before they get your meaning.Geography Now! Czech Republic (Czechia)
So on the linguistic level, we are definitely losing the close relationship that must have existed under in the communist era when the two nations were part of the same country. It IS a different country. Sometimes Czechs will tell me that it was the Slovaks who wanted the divorce. But I am not so sure about that, because, at least the people I know best and those are people from the western part of Slovakia definitely were not in favour of the country splitting.
I think it is a great pity that people were not given the chance to decide in a referendum whether they wanted the split or not. The Slovak gross national product GNPwhich includes citizens' incomes abroad and deducts the money multinational companies move out of the country, is higher than the Czech one.
Old-age pensions are more or less at the same level in both countries, and the consumption per capita is slightly higher in Slovakia. However, salaries are 10 percent lower on average in Slovakia than in the Czech Republic.
How mutually intelligible is Czech and Slovak?
In other words, a part of people's incomes comes from sources other than their main employment, and this reduces the real difference between the Czech and Slovak salaries, Respekt says. Slovakia has higher political stability than the Czech Republic: Slovaks have become a more integral part of the EU thanks to their adoption of the euro, and they are more resolved to take part in the banking and fiscal unions, Respekt writes. In the Czech Republic, the right wing opened the economy, and the left wing privatized banks and attracted foreign investors.
Until the GDP of the two countries was growing at a similar rate. But in —08, the Slovak economy grew faster than the Czech one.
How mutually intelligible is Czech and Slovak?
Why have the Czech reforms and modernization failed? This is rather unclear as the detailed reasons are obscured by the fog of the political operation.
The pension reform failed due to the left-wing's disapproval and the right wing lacking courage, while the healthcare reform failed due to the hospital lobby and government disunity. The university and labor market reforms have not even been prepared yet.
A reform making the civil service independent of politicians was approved but did not take effect because the government was afraid of losing influence over state bodies.
It says other serious problems of the Czech economy include complicated business rules, widespread corruption and a highly overpriced and slow motorway construction. Experts addressed by Respekt say the Czech economy might grow faster if the country were capable of using EU subsidies more effectively, modernizing the energy sector, attracting foreign investments, and quicker and cheaper building of motorways and modern railways.
Citizenship[ edit ] Since the federalization inCzechoslovakia had divided citizenship, either of the Czech Socialist Republic or of the Slovak Socialist Republic the word 'Socialist' was dropped from both names shortly after the Velvet Revolution.
This distinction, however, had little effect on the citizen's life. On January 1,all Czechoslovak citizens automatically became citizens either of the Czech Republic or the Slovak Republic, based on their previous citizenship, permanent residence address, birthplace, family ties, job, and other criteria.
Czech Republic–Slovakia relations - Wikipedia
Additionally, people had one year's time to claim the other citizenship under certain conditions. In the case of movement between the Czech Republic and Slovakia, this policy took effect from By contrast, the Czech Republic has formerly prohibited dual citizenship for naturalized citizens, requiring them to give up existing citizenship s prior to receiving citizenship of the Czech Republic.
This requirement could only be waived if giving up an existing citizenship might put the applicant or their relatives in danger of persecution in their homeland, which was not the case of applicants from Slovakia. Exempt from this law are only those Slovak citizens who obtain a foreign citizenship by virtue of marriage with a foreign national.
Some Slovak politicians have speculated in the media about softening the Citizenship Act, but no change has yet materialized as of January People of both countries were allowed to cross the border without a passport and were allowed to work anywhere without the need to obtain an official permit. Border checks were completely removed on 21 December when both countries joined the Schengen Agreement.
Customs union between the Czech Republic and Slovakia remained in place from the dissolution until May 1,when both countries entered the European Union.
Most of them did not re-register their official place of stay during the months before dissolution, and so the question of their citizenship was left open. The Czech Nationality Act allowed a grant of automatic citizenship only to those born on Czech territory. For others, the right to citizenship required proof of a five-year period of residence, an "unobjectionable" criminal record, significant fees and a complicated bureaucratic process; this reportedly excluded a rather large percentage of Roma.
Significant numbers of Roma living in Czech orphanages did not have their legal status clarified, and were released from care as adult non-citizens without any right to work or live in the Czech Republic.
This and the fact that the languages are very similar made almost all people of both nations passively bilinguali. After the dissolution in s the new TV channels in the Czech Republic practically stopped using Slovak, and young Czech people now have a much lower understanding of the Slovak language.
Also, the number of Slovak-language books and newspapers sold in the Czech Republic dropped drastically.