A Hussite Wars Interpretation in the Slovak Historiography in the Second Half of the 20th Century

Interpretácia husitských vojen v slovenskej historiografii v druhej polovici 20. storočia

This study deals with changes and reversals in Hussite Wars´ interpretations which have been presented by the Slovak historiography since the 1960s until now. The Hussite Wars and their influence have been one of the most important topics of both Czech and Slovak national histories, either based on a nationalistic or class viewpoint. These wars were incorporated in both socialistic and nationalistic narrative.
Because of this reason, interpretative variations of this topic reflected changes of contemporary social and historical conditions more than changes of scientific paradigms. This paper analyses how interpretations of individual historical events or personalities were changing essentially in dependence on ideological changes (e.g. even in works of the same historian). The source base remained almost unaltered, though. The interpretations have been developing according to the ideological transformations in Czechoslovak and Slovak society, including changes of official ideological dogmata of the Communist power applied in historiography.
Interpretations in the last half of the century have been determined by the presence of two main ideologems: the ideologem of the class conflict and the ideologem of the Czech-Slovak unity. The year 1993 was a significant milestone as the state ideology was changed and both former ideologems lost their place within the Hussite Wars´ interpretation. The topic itself lost its exclusive position in the Slovak historiography and the national narrative either. As far as the perception of the Hussite Wars in Slovakia is concerned, after decades of a positive (though internally contradictory) evaluation, the negative assessment has started to prevail.