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Stjepan Radic, The Croat Peasant Party, and the Politics of Mass Mobilization, 1904-1928

Stjepan Radic, The Croat Peasant Party, and the Politics of Mass Mobilization, 1904-1928

Copyright Date: 2000
Pages: 368
  • Book Info
    Stjepan Radic, The Croat Peasant Party, and the Politics of Mass Mobilization, 1904-1928
    Book Description:

    In 1904 Radic mobilized the peasantry into the Croatian Peasant Party that fought to reform Yugoslavia's centralist state system until his assassination in 1928 that ended the country's short democratic experience.

    eISBN: 978-1-4426-8020-3
    Subjects: Political Science

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-vi)
  3. Preface
    (pp. vii-xii)
  4. Abbreviations
    (pp. xiii-2)
  5. 1 Introduction and Historical Background
    (pp. 3-26)

    Two great forces have shaped the modern age. The first is nationalism, normally associated with the French Revolution of 1789, although its antecedents predate that event. The second is the Industrial Revolution. Combined, these two revolutions inaugurated a period of tremendous political, social, and economic upheaval in Europe, for they undermined the traditional loyalties and tenets of theancien régime. Although their impact was not felt immediately and uniformly throughout Europe, in the course of the nineteenth century they left an indelible mark on the entire continent. Old loyalties associated with feudal society, whether dynastic, corporate, regional, or religious, gradually...

  6. 2 Stjepan Radić: The Formative Years, 1871–1904
    (pp. 27-61)

    Stjepan Radić was born on 11 June 1871 in Trebarjevo Desno, a village on the banks of the Sava river to the southeast of Zagreb, near the provincial town of Sisak. Radić was near-sighted since birth, and of very limited material means; his future, like that of many other peasant children at the time, seemed far less than promising.¹ Yet, in spite of the imposing obstacles that lay in his path, he possessed a tremendous energy that would propel him through the most difficult of circumstances. His life is in many ways a testament to the important role that individuals...

  7. 3 Agrarianism and National Integration: The Ideology and Organization of Croat Peasantism
    (pp. 62-90)

    By the first years of the twentieth century a number of agrarian parties had been established in East Central Europe, which was part of a broader European process of the emergence of mass political parties since the 1890s. These parties shared a number of common characteristics, including the belief that society should be remodelled to reflect the peasant majority’s values and interests, a social and economic program that emphasized peasant needs, and the belief that the peasantry’s numeric preponderance necessitated a greater political role for that social group. That peasantist parties were formed at all demonstrated that a wide chasm...

  8. 4 Stjepan Radić, Croatianism, Yugoslavism, and the Habsburg Monarchy
    (pp. 91-119)

    In one form or another, the notion of Slavic reciprocity and the corresponding idea that the South Slavs constituted a single historical or linguistic-national community has long received considerable support in Croat intellectual circles. Ljudevit Gaj’s Illyrianist movement (1836—48), which represented the initial stage of the Croat national awakening, recognized this idea and attempted to construct a common culture for all South Slavs under the neutral Illyrian name while operating within the political framework of the kingdom of Croatia. Illyrianism was succeeded in the 1860s by the Yugoslavism of Bishop Josip Juraj Strossmayer and Canon Franjo Rački, both of...

  9. 5 The Revolt of the Masses: Stjepan Radić, the HPSS, and the Great War, 1914–1918
    (pp. 120-148)

    The First World War, or Great War as it was called until its more infamous successor, was a major turning-point for European society, including the South Slav lands and peoples. The attendant costs of this massive struggle, the human toll in dead and wounded, the economic dislocation, and the political turmoil contributed to tremendous changes in the postwar era. Of these changes ‘the revolt of the masses,’ to borrow José Ortega y Gasset’s phrase, was among the most significant. ‘The mass crushes beneath it everything that is different,’ Ortega wrote, ‘everything that is excellent, individual, qualified and select. Anybody who...

  10. 6 The Neutral Croat Peasant Republic and the Politics of National Mobilization, 1918–1925
    (pp. 149-206)

    After the First World War the seemingly innocuous HPSS of Stjepan Radić became the only significant political party in Croatia. The introduction of universal manhood suffrage and the party's republican platform, which overlapped with the sentiments of the Croat village, helped to transform the HPSS from a relatively insignificant outsider into a national mass movement that gradually penetrated every village and eventually commanded the loyalty of 80 per cent of the Croat populace. In the process the peasant movement overwhelmed the dominant prewar Croat parties. The HPSS transformation into a mass movement made it, by 1923, the second largest party...

  11. 7 Stjepan Radić and the Croat Question, 1925–1928
    (pp. 207-244)

    ‘Long live all our peasant people, long live our peasant and people’s king,’ were among the first words Radić uttered in July 1925 as he finally walked free from seven months of captivity.¹ Thirty-five months later Radić lay sprawled on the floor of the same Belgrade parliament that he had tried to avoid for years, the victim of an assassination attempt. If 1925 was theannée terribleof Radić and the HSS, it was only the first of many more to come. Having abandoned republicanism and Croat self-determination, Radić appeared to have been broken politically. His volte-face caused a great...

  12. 8 Conclusion
    (pp. 245-254)

    With Radić’s violent death in 1928 the HSS had solidified its status as the only significant political force among the Croats. By that point the HSS had penetrated virtually every village in Croatia and had taken its activism into other Croat-populated regions of the country, especially Bosnia-Herzegovina. Croat national unity had been achieved, and in August 1928 the Croat city and village stood more united than ever before. Compared with the situation just a decade earlier, this was a revolutionary transformation.

    The HSS’s central role in the completion of Croat national integration was based on its agrarian and national program....

  13. Notes
    (pp. 255-310)
  14. Bibliography
    (pp. 311-328)
  15. Index
    (pp. 329-344)