Ivan Šusteršič was the last Provincial Governor of Carniola and one of the most important statesmen of the late Habsburg Monarchy. From the turn of the century to the First World War, he was the leader of the Slovene (and often also other South Slav) deputies in the Austrian parliament. “The Uncrowned Duke of Carniola” distinguished himself in the Austrian Reichsrat as an excellent speaker, a skilful tactician and an authoritative leader of the Slovene delegation. In his speeches, he evaluated confidently the foreign policy of the Monarchy especially on the Balkans. Also, his merits in the adoption of the general and equal male suffrage to the Austrian parliament in the years 1906/07 cannot be underestimated. The new biography by Andrej Rahten shows Šusteršič’s determined and successful politics as part of the Slovene Catholic movement in the times of the ever more aggressive nationalisms. The author describes in detail Šusteršič’s trialist reform plans which ended with an interesting proposal for the establishment of a Danube Federation as part of a larger European Community. The failure of these plans was not only the personal tragedy of Šusteršič, but became also the tragedy of the whole Central Europe.
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