Meaning of SLOVAKIA in English

officially Slovak Republic, Slovak Slovensko, or Slovensk Republika, landlocked country of central Europe. It is roughly coextensive with the historic region of Slovakia, the easternmost of the two territories that from 1918 to 1992 constituted Czechoslovakia. Slovakia's independence dates from Jan. 1, 1993, slightly more than three years after the collapse of the communist regime that had controlled the Czechoslovak federation since 1948. The country is bordered by its former federal partnerthe Czech Republicto the west, Poland to the north, Ukraine to the east, Hungary to the south, and Austria to the southwest. It has an area of 18,932 square miles (49,035 square kilometres). The capital is Bratislava. Relief The Western Carpathian Mountains dominate the topography of Slovakia. They consist of a system of three regions of east-west-trending rangesOuter, Central, and Innerseparated by valleys and intermontane basins. Two large lowland areas north of the Hungarian border, the Little Alfold (called the Podunajsk, or Danubian, Lowland in Slovakia) in the southwest and the Eastern Slovakian Lowland in the east, comprise the Slovakian portion of the Inner Carpathian Depressions region. The Outer Western Carpathians to the north extend into the eastern Czech Republic and southern Poland and contain the Little Carpathian (Slovak: Bel Karpaty), Javornky, and Beskid (Beskydy) mountains. The Central Western Carpathians across central Slovakia include the country's highest ranges: the High Tatra (Vysok Tatry) Mountains, containing the highest point in the republic, Gerlachovsk Peak, at 8,711 feet (2,655 metres); and, to the south, the Low Tatra (Nzke Tatry) Mountains, which reach elevations of about 6,500 feet. Farther to the south are the Inner Western Tatra Mountains, which extend into Hungary and contain the economically important Slovak Ore (Slovensk Rudohorie) Mountains. Drainage and soils Slovakia drains predominantly southward into the Danube (Dunaj) River system. Two major rivers, the Morava and the Danube, form the republic's southwestern border. The principal rivers draining the mountains include the Vh, Hron, Hornd, and Bodrog, all flowing south, and the Poprad, draining northward. Flows vary seasonally from the torrents of spring snowmelt to late-summer lows. Mountain lakes and mineral and thermal springs are numerous. Relief and climate impose a striking variety of soil types in Slovakia. The country's richest soils, the black chernozems, occur in the southwest, though the alluvial deposit known as Zitn (Rye) Island occupies the core of the Slovakian Danube basin. The upper reaches of the southern river valleys are covered with brown forest soils, while podzols dominate the central and northern areas of middle elevation. Stony mountain soils cover the highest regions. officially Slovak Republic, Slovak Slovensko, or Slovensk Republika landlocked nation of central Europe, roughly coextensive with the historic region of Slovakia. Slovakia is bordered by its former federal partner, the Czech Republic, to the west, Poland to the north, Ukraine to the east, Hungary to the south, and Austria to the southwest. The capital is Bratislava. Area 18,933 square miles (49,035 square km). Pop. (1993 est.) 5,329,000. Physical and human geography. The Carpathian Mountains dominate the topography of Slovakia, the highest elevation occurring in the north at Gerlach Peak, 8,711 feet (2,655 m), in the High Tatras (Vysok Tatry) range. Lowlands occupy the southwestern and southeastern regions. Two major rivers, the Morava (March) and the Dunaj (Danube), form parts of the republic's southern border. The principal rivers draining the mountains include the Vh, Hron, Hornd, and Bodrog, all flowing south, and the Poprad, draining northward. Slovakia has a moderate continental climate, with hotter summers in the lowlands and colder winters in the mountainous areas. The annual precipitation is 22 inches (570 mm) in the Danube plains and more than 43 inches (1,100 mm) in windward mountain valleys. More than two-fifths of Slovakia's area is forested, with forest cover most extensive in the mountainous districts. The population is about nine-tenths Slovak. Hungarians, concentrated in the southern districts, form the largest minority. About 60 percent of the population is Roman Catholic; the remainder belong to Protestant or Orthodox denominations, other groups, or are nonreligious. Agriculture accounts for only about one-tenth of the net national product. About one-third of the land is cultivated. Wheat, barley, corn (maize), sugar beets, rye, and vegetables are grown in the lowlands, where pigs and cattle are the primary livestock. Potatoes, oats, and flax are grown in the mountain valleys, where sheep are the principal livestock. Tobacco and fruits are grown in the Vh River valley, and vineyards thrive on the southern slopes of the Carpathian ranges. Mining and manufacturing account for more than 60 percent of the net national product. Substantial deposits of iron ore, copper, magnesite, lead, and zinc are mined in the mountains. The chief energy source for industry is hydroelectric power, generated by a series of dams on the Vh, Orava, Hornd, and Slan rivers. Heavy industry is centred in the towns along the Vh and at Bratislava and Koice. Major manufactured products include steel, cement, plastics, foods and beverages, and fertilizers. Additional reading General works As yet, there are few works that discuss the Czech Republic and Slovakia independently of the historical region of the former Czechoslovak federation. General descriptive information on the region is available in Ihor Gawdiak (ed.), Czechoslovakia: A Country Study, 3rd ed. (1989); David W. Paul, Czechoslovakia: Profile of a Socialist Republic at the Crossroads of Europe (1981), a brief survey; Sharon L. Wolchik, Czechoslovakia in Transition: Politics, Economics, and Society (1991); and two collections of essays: Hans Brisch and Ivan Volgyes (eds.), Czechoslovakia: The Heritage of Ages Past (1979); and Miloslav Rechcigl, Jr. (ed.), Czechoslovakia Past and Present, 2 vol. (1968). The land and the people Basic geographic information is discussed in Jaromr Demek et al., Geography of Czechoslovakia, trans. from Czech (1971); and Vlastislav Hufler, Ekonomick geografie Ceskoslovenska, 2nd rev. and enlarged ed. (1984). Works with sections on Czechoslovakia include Dean S. Rugg, Eastern Europe (1985); Andr Balanc, Pierre George, and Henri Smotkine, Les Rpubliques socialistes d'Europe centrale, 2nd ed. (1975); and Roy E.H. Mellor, Eastern Europe: A Geography of the COMECON Countries (1975). G.Z. Fldvary, Geology of the Carpathian Region (1988), includes coverage of much of Slovakia. Useful atlases are Jozef cipk and Jindrich Svoboda (eds.), Atlas CSSR, 8th ed. (1984); Emil Mazr (ed.), Atlas Slovenskej socialistickej republiky (1980), the text of which is available separately in English in Emil Mazr and Jozef Jakl (eds.), Atlas of the Slovak Socialist Republic (1983); Antonin Gtz (ed.), Atlas Ceskoslovensk socialistick republiky (1966); and Atlas Zivotnho Prostred a Zdrav Obyvatelstva CSFR (1992), in English and Czech, a survey of environmental conditions and the health of the population. One segment of the population is addressed in Otto Ulc, Gypsies in Czechoslovakia: A Case of Unfinished Integration, Eastern European Politics and Societies, 2(2):306332 (Spring 1988). Vladimr Hajko et al. (eds.), Encyklopdia slovenska, 6 vol. (197782), is a regional encyclopaedia stressing Slovak and Czech topics, personalities, and events since 1968; while Vladimr Prochzka (ed.), Prrucn slovnk naucn, 4 vol. (196267), is a concise Czech encyclopaedia. The economy, administration, and social conditions A historical overview is Alice Teichova, The Czechoslovak Economy, 19181980 (1988). The history of economic reform proposals from 1948 to 1982 is treated in John N. Stevens, Czechoslovakia at the Crossroads: The Economic Dilemmas of Communism in Postwar Czechoslovakia (1985); and Martin Myant, The Czechoslovak Economy, 19481988: The Battle for Economic Reform (1989). Also useful are the relevant sections in M.C. Kaser (ed.), The Economic History of Eastern Europe, 19191975, 3 vol. (198286); Frank W. Carter, Czechoslovakia: Geographical Prospects for Energy, Environment, and Economy, Geography, 75(328):253255 (July 1990); and two articles in Communist Economies and Economic Transformation, vol. 4, no. 1 (1992): Milica Zarkovic Bookman, Economic Issues Underlying Secession: The Case of Slovenia and Slovakia, pp. 111134; and Joshua Charap, Karel Dyba, and Martin Kupka, The Reform Process in Czechoslovakia: An Assessment of Recent Developments and Prospects for the Future, pp. 322. Jaroslav Krejc, Social Change and Stratification in Postwar Czechoslovakia (1972), is a socioeconomic study of Czechoslovak life in the communist period. Karel Joseph Kansky, Urbanization Under Socialism: The Case of Czechoslovakia (1976), is an urban geography and social history. Francis William Carter Cultural life Miloslav Rechcigl, Jr. (ed.), The Czechoslovak Contribution to World Culture (1964), is a collection of essays on all aspects of intellectual life, with an extensive bibliography. Czech and Slovak writers and their works are discussed in Robert B. Pynsent and S.I. Kanikova (eds.), Reader's Encyclopedia of Eastern European Literature (also published as The Everyman Companion to East European Literature, 1993). Specific studies of music and folk art include Vladimr tepnek and Bohumil Karsek, An Outline of Czech and Slovak Music, trans. from Czech, 2 vol. (196064); Rosa Newmarch, The Music of Czechoslovakia (1942, reprinted 1978); and Vera Hasalov and Jaroslav Vajdi, Folk Art of Czechoslovakia, trans. from Czech (1974), on the art and architecture of both Slovaks and Czechs. Z.A.B. Zeman Administration and social conditions Government Constitutional framework The Slovak National Council adopted a new constitution for the republic on Sept. 1, 1992, four months before the partition of the federation. In general philosophy, this documentlike its Czech counterpartreflects the Charter of Fundamental Rights and Freedoms passed by the former Czechoslovak Federal Assembly in 1991. The constitution provides for a unicameral legislature called the National Council, consisting of 150 deputies chosen by direct general election. The head of state, the president, is elected for a five-year term by a three-fifths majority of the National Council. The supreme executive body of the republic is the government formed by the prime minister, whom the president appoints. Local government The constitution addresses the issue of local administration only cursorily, defining the single unit of municipality as a territorial and administrative entity exercising jurisdiction over its permanent residents. The extent of municipal autonomy, and in particular the relationship between the municipalities and the state, remained to be clarified. The designation of three regions (kraje)Stredn Slovensko, Vchodn Slovensko, and Zpadn Slovenskoalong with the separate capital area of Bratislava remained in effect for some administrative purposes. Cultural life The antecedents of a distinct Slovak culture date from the mission sent to Moravia in AD 863 by the Byzantine emperor Michael III at the request of the Moravian prince Rostislav; the Moravian state then encompassed at least part of the territory of present-day Slovakia. Byzantine influence was short-lived, however, disappearing from the region after the invasions by nomadic Magyar tribes toward the end of the 9th century. The South Slavs were separated from the Slavs living north of the Danube River, and, as the territory of Slovakia came under Magyar control, it became known as Upper Hungary. Literature Slovak dialects are related to Czech, but they have been distinct since the Middle Ages. No systematic attempt was made, however, to develop a Slovak literary language, although in the 18th century devotional texts were produced with increasingly local flavour, and Josef Ignc Bajza wrote the didactic novel Ren (178385) in heavily Slovak-influenced Czech. Finally, Anton Bernolk consolidated a Slovak literary form in a grammar (1790) and a six-volume dictionary (182527), using the western Slovak dialect as a base. The poet Jn Kollr, using this language, completed Slvy dcera (The Daughter of Slva) in 1824, which, in the Romantic literary tradition, celebrated the common past of the Slavs. Bernolk's language also was used by Jn Holl, who wrote lyrics, idylls, and national epics. The Slovak Protestant minority, however, continued to use Czech as their liturgical language. Another attempt to codify literary Slovak was made by L'udovt tr, this time based on the more commonly spoken dialect of central Slovakia. tr's new idiom was quickly taken up by a group of talented poets, including Andrej Sldkovic (Andrej Braxatoris), whose Marna (1846) became a national epic. The most significant figure was Janko Krl', whose exploits in the Revolutions of 1848 made him a legend. His writings are among the most original products of Slavonic Romanticism. In the 20th century, the chief strength of Slovak literature continued to be in lyric poetry. The preeminent poet before World War I was Hviezdoslav (Pavol Orszgh), who enriched Slovak poetic language by original work and by translations. Other notable poets were Svetozr Hurban Vajansk and Ivan Krasko (the pseudonym of Jn Botto), whose volumes of verse, Nox et solitudo (1909) and Vere (1912), were among the finest achievements of Slovak literature. After the war, the leading lyric poets were Martin Rzus, Janko Jesensk, Emil Boleslav Lukc, Jn Smrek (Jn Cietek), Jn Ponican, and Laco Novomesk. In fiction, the country tales by Timrava (Bozena Slanckova), a vast chronicle of 20th-century Slovakia by Milo Urban, and the lyrical prose of Margita Figuli were outstanding. The problems of World War II and its aftermath of communist rule found vivid, personal expression in the work of Ladislav Mnacko, Alfonz Bednr, and Dominik Tatarka. While Mnacko was among the first eastern European writers to criticize Stalinism in his popular novel Ako chut moc (1967; The Taste of Power), Tatarka attacked the Husk regime's process of normalization in Czechoslovakia after 1969 in Sm proti noci (1984; Alone Against the Night). Robert Auty Z.A.B. Zeman

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