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スロヴァキアの「首都」をめぐる戦間期の議論 : フェドル・ルッペルトの中心都市論を手掛かりに

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Title: スロヴァキアの「首都」をめぐる戦間期の議論 : フェドル・ルッペルトの中心都市論を手掛かりに
Other Titles: Fedor Ruppeldt's Arguments about the "Capital City" of Slovakia during the Inter-war Period
Authors: 香坂, 直樹1 Browse this author
Authors(alt): Kosaka, Naoki1
Issue Date: 2010
Publisher: 北海道大学スラブ研究センター
Journal Title: スラヴ研究
Journal Title(alt): Slavic Studies
Volume: 57
Start Page: 123
End Page: 156
Abstract: This article focuses on Fedor Ruppeldt's arguments concerning the "capital city" of Slovakia, which he wrote and published in several articles during the inter-war period. Through analyses of them, the author describes Ruppeldt's notion of Slovak national culture and the territory of Slovakia, and compares it with the opinions of other Slovak intellectuals. Before 1918, in the Kingdom of Hungary, Slovakia did not form an administrative unit, and it also lacked its own political-administrative center. This situation changed after the foundation of the Czechoslovak Republic and the incorporation of Slovakia into the new nation-state of Czechs and Slovaks. In February 1919, Bratislava, the westernmost and biggest city of Slovakia, was selected to be the seat of the minister for administration of Slovakia, and became the seat of the newly formed Slovak Provincial Office in 1928. Many Slovak leaders also considered Bratislava to be the political-administrative and national-cultural center, the "capital city" of Slovakia, although the majority of inhabitants in Bratislava had been Magyars and Germans throughout the inter-war period, and their cultural and economic influences in the city were still manifest. Fedor Ruppeldt, a Slovak evangelic intellectual and collaborator with R. W. Seton-Watson, was an ardent opponent of the consolidation of Bratislava as the "capital city" of Slovakia. In his articles, he argued for the town of Martin, the center of the Turiec region in central Slovakia and the recognized center of the Slovak national movement during the second half of the nineteenth century. Ruppeldt claimed that Martin was suitable as the "capital city" of Slovakia using two arguments: analysis of the "center of Slovakia" and the argument about the "concentration of Slovakia." Ruppeldt sought the "center of Slovakia" from two standpoints: the national-cultural and the geographical-transportational. According to him, Turiec and Martin composed the true center of Slovakia from both standpoints, being located in the center of the territory inhabited by the Slovak people and having an important railway network junction in Slovakia. In contrast, he considered Bratislava unsuitable as Slovakia's center, as it stood on the national and geographical periphery of Slovakia. Ruppeldt argued about the "concentration of Slovakia" as questions of both national economy and national consciousness. As for the question of national economy, Ruppeldt fiercely criticized continuous investments in Bratislava by the Czechoslovak government. According to him, the land price in Bratislava was very high and landowners were mainly the "old inhabitants," namely not Slovaks, but Magyars, Germans, and Jews, who were the traditional elites of the city. Therefore, further construction of Bratislava was not only economically irrational but also a mere waste of the national property of Slovaks, because investments in it only resulted in benefit to these "old inhabitants," not to Slovaks. On the other hand, the inhabitants of Turiec and Martin were almost totally Slovaks, but they suffered from poverty and economical devastation after WWI. He considered investment in Martin and a project to reconstruct it to be a remedy for their sufferings, the impetus for recovery of industry in central Slovakia, and thereby the driving force behind the emergence of a new Slovak middle class. In questions of national consciousness, Ruppeldt criticized the cosmopolitan atmosphere in Bratislava as the source of the degeneration of young Slovak intellectuals. He demanded the relocation of Comenius University from Bratislava to Martin. More generally, he argued for the psychological effects of the construction project itself. According to him, such a large national project would require cooperation among all Slovak intellectuals beyond party confrontation, and as a result, it would reverse the political fragmentation among the Slovak intellectuals that surfaced after the foundation of Czechoslovakia. Ruppeldt also expected that the participation of the ordinary Slovak people in this project would strengthen their national consciousness. Ruppeldt's arguments were based on strong caution against foreign culture. He thought that Slovak national culture was still weak and that it did not have sufficient strength to compete with the German and Magyar culture in multi-cultural Bratislava. In contrast, he recognized Martin and its local national associations as the epitome of efforts of Slovak national-oriented intellectuals who longed for the formation of their own center. Therefore, Ruppeldt demanded retreat to Martin and its further development as the source of Slovak culture. Although Ruppeldt presented rather ambitious projects for the reconstruction of Martin, his notion of Slovak culture and the Slovak territory was substantially defensive. On the other hand, other Slovak political leaders and intellectuals, who supported Bratislava being the center of Slovakia, not only highly evaluated its economic importance as the exit to the Danube, but also believed in the strength of the Slovak cultural influence and in the possibility of "Slovakization" of this multi-cultural city. As a conclusion, it is possible to say that this difference in recognition concerning the powers of Slovaks lay behind the disputes about the "capital city" of Slovakia.
Type: bulletin (article)
Appears in Collections:スラヴ研究 = Slavic Studies > 57

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